"Sometimes people who are very idealistic and have great
dreams, as young people do, are apt to stay at arm's length
from the political process because they think their good
hearts might be brittle, and if they invest their hopes and
allow themselves to believe, then they're going to be let down
"But thank goodness we've always had enough people who have been willing in every generation to push past the fear of a broken heart and become deeply involved in forming a more perfect union. We're America. And we believe in our future, and we know we have the ability to shape our future. "
~~Vice President Albert Gore, Jr.
Washington University, St. Louis
|The sun hasn't risen yet, but you have. You just can't sleep another minute. You've got eighteen things to do before you leave for class in an hour, and there's something about the air this morning, the way it's circulating, the way it still tastes like October and makes you forget November's come.
Except that it's election day, and this you do remember. And it excites you, even though you know your mom would laugh if you tried to explain it. She didn't raise you into politics, but you've gone there anyway, like a moth to a bug light, and you're terrified you're going to get zapped by nightfall.
What if he loses?
You tell yourself it doesn't matter. So what if he loses? It's just an office. It's just the Presidency. Does it really affect you? Does it really make a difference in everything, in anything you do?
Your mom said those words last night, and you shook your head sadly, but this morning, as the sky turns pink, you think you understand why she feels that way. It's easier to feel that way. It's not so scary when it's meaningless.
But the VOLUNTEER pass dangling off the mirror snaps you back to your senses. You watched this man speak. You saw him close his eyes and mean it. You saw him set his jaw with a determination lacking in the other guy, a determination to do the things you need done. So you put on your jacket, the one you wore in October, and you fumble on the nightstand for your keys. It's time to go cast one vote among millions and then hold your breath all day.