Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Voting Was Torture in
Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Voting was torture. It took three hours. The Florida day was dank and cool. I was close to tears by the time I reached the polling booths, from the pain in my hip and the arthritis in my neck and shoulders.

I finished the last three-quarters of a trashy werewolf novel and had time to knock off a few pages in an internet marketing book I am slowly reading.

A man started standing next to me as I read. He didn’t seem to have been there before. I whisperingly asked the older woman behind me if he’d always been there. She said no. As he inched in front of me, I softly said, “Sir, I was wondering where you came from. Because I’m right behind him (I gestured to a man with a baby in carriage), and she’s right behind me.”

“I was always here,” he said.

The elders in line started shaking their heads at this bald-faced lie. “No, you were back there,” several gestured. He didn’t fall back, but waited where he had been standing as we moved forward. I expect he’d try to find another unaware person – as he must have thought I was buried in my book – or a more timid soul than I who would not challenge him. My hip simply hurt too much after two hours in line to put up with a young buttinsky.

Just as we reached the door into the voting room – a cafeteria in this small development of 10 condominium apartment buildings that served three districts – a busload of handicapped elders came in. They were given chairs and ushered into line before us. I mentioned that I was in severe pain, even though I wasn’t handicapped. People even older than I who had been standing near me also started to grumble. the woman behind me insisted that she go to the check-in ahead of two people who were pushed in front of her. She was 70, at least.

No one wants to be unkind to the handicapped, but after two and a half hours on our feet, our own aches and pains were screaming for attention.

I will never again vote at a polling place. Never, never, never. Absentee ballots are inconvenient, because often they are due before I have all the information I need about the local propositions and local candidates. Nonetheless, when a 19th century voting system is in place, absentee ballot is how I shall have to do it.

1 comment:

Dogwalkmusings said...

Boy, I hear you on this one! I vote absentee all the time because of the pain I have from the same assortment of ailments you seem to have.

Are we to be penalized for fighting for our independence when it comes to health issues? You may have just given me a new crusade! Lol.