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Tell Us Your Voting Story; Here, I'll Start

By Margaret Lyons in Miscellaneous on Nov 2, 2004 4:27PM

2004_11_2.ivoted.jpgWe usually try to write stuff for Chicagoist in the royalblogger we—beyond keepin' it real, we like the idea that Chicagoist is an entity not exactly the same as but not entirely different from each of its contributors and editors. But today's a special day, and we're, ahem, I'm going to break the trend. Here's my story about voting. Take this as your cue to leave a story about YOUR voting. Where'd you vote? Was it your first time? Did you meet some neighbors? Were you and are you excited or nervous? Let 'er rip: tell your story either in the comments, or e-mail it to me and I'll post a bunch later today. If you have a picture, send that along too. In any case, vote vote vote!

I was all jazzed up this morning, pleased that I had the energy and capacity to get up early and do something, anything, before work. Yay! Election Day! My polling place is only two blocks from my apartment, but the school has like a jiznillion doors and I wound up walking the entire perimeter looking for the main one. Finally spotting the election signs, I bounded up the five or six stairs (handicapped entrance around the corner), thinking "whee! Voting!" rather than "Hey, stairs. One at a time." My voting glee was quickly shattered by wiping the fuck out on the steps. We're talking down on the ground, scraped knee, ripped stockings, gravely dirt mushed into my palms, my bag inexplicably 12 feet away: Total Wipe-Out. At least there was no one around. Oh wait, there totally tons and tons of people stunned by my exquisite grace and poise. The school security guard helped me to my feet—adios, pride—and smiled. "You must be very excited to vote," she chuckled. "I really am!" I replied as she helped me dust myself off.

So there you go. Voting was fun even if it involved me possibly needing stitches later today. Today is my first time voting in Illinois, and my third time voting in anything ever; I voted once in a senate primary and I absentee voted in the last presidential election. But today was the first time I felt like a real grown-up doing a real grown-up thing. I'm proud of myself today. I wanted to tell people on the bus on the way to work, "Hey, did you vote? Did you look up what judges to vote for? Don't forget to vote yes on 346. By the way, do I look different? More American? Mature? Responsible?"

I feel a little more American, more mature, more responsible. I voted at an elementary school literally under a banner that said Take Hold of Your Future with a hand holding a globe. Though the banner was addressed to the kindergarteners entering the classroom, its message wasn't lost on those of us lined up beneath it.

Now back to your regularly scheduling blogging.