I had an interesting voting experience.
First, the back story: my wife and I moved from one part of the Upper West Side in New York to another part of the Upper West Side. Considering we’ve never left the neighborhood, this was a big bold step.
At the time of our relocation, my wife, Jenny, filled out a new voter registration form that noted the address change. I did not. She mocked me and said I would have to walk 10 blocks to vote while she just had to saunter over to the Public School 8 across our street and cast her ballot.
This morning, Jenny grabbed a coat and a cup of coffee and headed over to the school. My daughter and I strolled quietly behind her. Inside the polling center, a volunteer informed Jenny that her name was not on their manifest. Jenny asked the worker to check again. He did. The same result. Maybe you’re still registered at the old address?
My wife turned around to me and did what she usually does – insist this was all my fault. I have been married long enough to know she was right. (A helpful hint to husbands: when your wife calls and you answer the phone, don’t say hello – just say I’m sorry.)
So Jenny, Emily and I walked down Amsterdam Avenue to our original polling center. It’s also a school. But instead of the 15-minute wait at P.S. 8, this one was packed with hundreds of voters. The line snaked back to Amsterdam before doubling back up to the front of the school.
Jenny was not happy. But we waited. And waited. And waited.
An hour and a half later, we were inside the cafeteria. I noticed a Republican inspector sitting by himself in a corner. He said business has been slow. I suggested he move to Texas.
I walked up to the counter, gave them my name, received a voting card, pulled the lever and that was that.
When I emerged from the booth, I heard my wife. I didn’t see her. I didn’t have to. She was having an argument with another official. “What do you mean you don’t have my name? What is going on here?”
She was furious. Somehow, her identification was in election limbo. “You can fill out a paper ballot,” she was informed. That didn’t go over well with her. But Jenny signed the form and handed it back to the official.
She then did what I knew was coming. She yelled at me.
And I told her she was right to yell at me. Because it was my fault. It always is.
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