Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Absent-minded ballot

I have tried and failed to vote by absentee ballot in the last two presidential elections. In 2000 I opened my ballot to find I had only a state ballot, not a national one. I don't know how that's possible, but since I hadn't been in the U.S. for a year and had no idea who was running, I couldn't in good conscious vote for any of the people on it.

In 2004, we had just moved to Singapore, so I had my dad go to the court house and request an absentee ballot on my behalf. Something didn't go through, so I requested another one online. It showed up in my post box on the day of the election. I still have it. It will make a good social studies lesson one of these days.

This year, I will not fail. I have just gone online to request a ballot, and I was confronted with this interesting question:

Last Residential Address
a. I know my exact address
b. I will describe my former address
c. My last address was a rural route.

I was tempted to click on the second option, just to see how they wanted me to proceed. How do you describe your former address? Do you say, "Well, it was this kind of slate blue craftsman style house about a block past the Blockbuster downtown"? Or describe like, "We lived in this suburb outside of Minneapolis. I want to say it started with a P. Does that help?" And the person on the other end of cyberspace goes, "Oh, ok, yeah, I know just the house you're talking about!"

And how cluttered does your mind have to be that you don't remember your last known address?

Well, I do know my last known address, so I'm right now ensuring that my husband will also be permitted to vote this year. Speaking of the presidential elections, you have to watch this funny clip from David Letterman.

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