-assumed to be a Republican (because my mother is a registered Republican and has worked at the polls for years)
-mistaken for some recently-married lady ("Do you remember me? I'm S----'s mother! Don't you know who I am? Your husband's..." umm, I'm not married! I think you're confusing me with someone else "Well, I hope you get married soon!")
-asked if I was married (by a different person)
-given an offer to be set up with a fellow election judge's clients (he's an accountant, and immediately started going through all of his single male clients to see which ones he could set me up with. he wasn't too put off when I told him that I'm not Orthodox anymore, either!)
-explained how primaries work to a fellow election judge
-told a fellow election judge that Bush is, in fact, in his second term of office and cannot run for president again
-was asked (again by a fellow election judge) to explain the difference between Republicans and Democrats. I told him that it wasn't something that could be summarized accurately in a few sentences, even if I were less rusty on the "real" differences. (liberal/conservative just doesn't do it justice, and even if the current Republican party is sucky, that's not necessarily because of the overarching Republican ideals.)
-when I wasn't able to do that, was asked which party likes the death penalty more
[This election judge is a Republican, and had said, minutes before, that he is a *strong* Republican...whatever that means. Actually, though, he wasn't born in the US, and I'm kind of thinking it's possible he's not actually registered or qualified to vote. See, he's a city employee, and they really pushed city employees to sign up as election judges the day before the election...I'm thinking they may have been lax on some of the details.]
-explained various weird practices of the Orthodox Jewish community (Sabbath, Passover, wearing wigs, Shidduch-dating)
-voted for the Green Party candidate for Governor (I didn't feel strongly enough about either Ehrlich or O'Malley)
and yet more:
-was asked whether I have kids
-was asked whether I plan to have kids
-was told that whether or not I want kids is something I should have already made a decision about
(funnily enough, this wasn't the same person who was trying to fix me up with single guys)
-vowed never to do this again
-realized that it gets easier as the day wears on and you figure out what you're doing
-decided that I'll work at the polls again if they continue to use the e-Pollbooks
-encountered a voter who really wanted to vote at our polling place because that's where he always votes, even though he'd moved (During training they brought up that hypothetical scenario, and I didn't believe anyone would actually feel that way.)
-explained to people that you can get called up for jury duty even if you aren't registered to vote, so you might as well register
-issued a provisional ballot to a lady who was really incredibly excited about voting, whether it was on a machine or on the provisional paper ballots, and brought her own special twirly pen to fill out the ballot with. (People like that make me happy.)
-was asked what ethnicity I was. White/Caucasian/Jewish/European/my grandparents came over from Russia was not enough. I think what she was trying to find out was whether I was born in the US. Dude, I'm an election judge, I have no accent, I'm 23 and I can vote, so I'm clearly a citizen. You know that my mother is also working at the polls and has no accent. Where do you think I was born?
Today on Fresh Air, Terry Gross interviewed Wayne Slater, who just wrote a biography of Karl Rove.
One of the most fascinating bits: he (Slater) describes how throughout 2004 Karl Rove lovingly attended to the needs of his dying stepfather--who was gay--while constructing "the most effective anti-gay political campaign ever put together...designed to re-elect President Bush"
Slater explains that Rove is simply very good at focusing at the task at hand: what does it take to crush the opposition?--regardless of his personal feelings.
A woman's face with Nature's own hand painted
Hast thou, the master-mistress of my passion;
A woman's gentle heart, but not acquainted
With shifting change, as is false women's fashion;
An eye more bright than theirs, less false in rolling,
Gilding the object whereupon it gazeth;
A man in hue, all 'hues' in his controlling,
Much steals men's eyes and women's souls amazeth.
And for a woman wert thou first created;
Till Nature, as she wrought thee, fell a-doting,
And by addition me of thee defeated,
By adding one thing to my purpose nothing.
But since she prick'd thee out for women's pleasure,
Mine be thy love and thy love's use their treasure.
Online Etymology Dictionary (a superb resource, incidentally) informs me that the "earliest recorded use [of "prick"] for "penis" is 1592. My prick was used 16c.-17c. as a term of endearment by "immodest maids" for their boyfriends."
After vowing to avoid my standard internet timewasters (and blocking them using a HOSTS file), I ended up browsing a bulletin board. An Orthodox Jewish one, as it were.
There's a post from someone who has been a teacher for 15 years. She asks for suggestions on how she should help female students who inform her that they are being "visited" at night by their fathers, or molested by their male teachers, to get the fathers/teachers to back away. Yes, that's right, because these men are just letting their 'evil inclination' get the better of them, but that doesn't mean they're bad. (Apparently this has happened several times over the years.)
I don't ever post on that bulletin board. I really have no desire to engage in discussion with these people, and frankly, if they want to live their lives by some very strange laws that I may not agree with, that's fine with me.
I had to post, to say FOR SHAME in the biggest, blackest letters you can use on that forum, for suggesting that a girl being abused by her father should continue to respect him and just attempt to get him to come to his senses. That it is incumbent upon her, especially as an authority figure, to actually do something. A few people had asked why she hadn't gone to child protective services, but no one had scolded her, and I felt it was necessary.
She had the nerve to post back that the father would probably then be separated from the family, and wasn't it better to deal with this than to grow up with no father at all? Holy crap. Now, I may not be the paragon of virtue to these people, but I grew up without a father, and I think I came out okay if I do say so myself. Certainly healthier than children who have been abused. You can't even compare growing up without a father to growing up with a father who abuses. One of them's unfortunate and a little difficult, the other one causes irreparable psychological damage. The only person I ever knew who committed suicide had been molested by her father as a teenager. Thirty years later, she still couldn't deal with it, and she decided to end her life.
Are people fucking crazy?