Tuesday, May 3, 2016

The great campaign of 2016

Where have I been?
I've been here, buried under mounds of work and responsibility since Michael decided to make a run for district 1 commissioner. This game is not for the faint of heart. I watch the national political campaigns and can only react with severe sympathy no matter who the candidate. The seat Michael is running for is local government. However this entire process has given me great insight into the inner workings of the American voter and the backward processes that every candidate must go through.
Knocking on doors is a personal favorite of mine. Everyone needs to knock on a door at some point in their life. Older people don't mind your visit; that was the way it was done back in the day. Younger people are scared to open the door. I'm convinced it's because of their insane amount of time being plugged in all the time to TV, phones, computers, video games, etc. Real people are scary!
First of all you have to realize that you are deemed the enemy right off. "What are you selling?  Did you see my 'no soliciting' sign?"
I smile..a lot. I probably am not as intimidating as a man..hey, there's at least one perk to being a woman.
Next you have to blurt out the reason you are there and try and get their attention just enough to have some actual interest.
Some people just accept the literature and close the door as quickly as possible. Others put you on the spot, as if you're the candidate. I have to push away the urge to say, "Can you just go to the website and leave me alone?" It's usually 99 degrees out there and I've already walked 5 miles.
If you can find someone who, out of the goodness of their heart, has stopped to actually retain what you say, you have a chance. However, one of the most amusing facts that I've learned during my neighborhood walks is that people base their votes on the most frivolous things. One woman told me that she would vote for us because we were from South Augusta, where she lived. Many said that we were the first to knock on their door so they would vote for Michael. They seriously think someone should visit them personally. Just a heads up, there are over 16000 voters in our district alone. That's a lot of doors.
My favorite was a little old lady who, through a sneaky little grin, told Michael that she'd vote for him...because he was handsome.
In short, most voters are petty. I myself have gone to the polls on more than one occasion knowing nothing at all of the candidates.  I am ashamed to say that before this election, I had never been to a political forum to hear the candidates talk. I have even cast my vote based on which name I liked more. It's really sad that such a great privilege is squandered by so many, including my past self. But no more. I know the ins and outs, the sacrifice of time, money and energy that it takes to do anything political. It's a shame that it took running a campaign to earn that appreciation.
I must give a final shout out during this post to my all time most memorable citizen. I knocked on one door and out came a 200lb rottweiler...who proceeded to jump up on me. To say I nearly wet my pants is an understatement.  Luckily that dog was just as sweet as she was big. THANK GOD!