Dear Holy God, Another Month To Go
Posted on October 4, 2008 Posted by John Scalzi 92 Comments
We’re now exactly a month away from the election. What will you be doing to preserve your sanity?
Posted on October 4, 2008 Posted by John Scalzi 92 Comments
We’re now exactly a month away from the election. What will you be doing to preserve your sanity?
Taunting the tauntable since 1998
John Scalzi, proprietor – JS
Athena Scalzi, contributor – AMS
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Here in California we have Proposition 8 to worry about, so I’m just pretending that’s all that’s coming up in November.
That and watching X-Files reruns. It’s cheaper than drinking.
I am not sure if this will be improving my sanity but I will be checking every few days to make sure my voter registration went through in time. (I just moved. Don’t try this at home, kids. Moving right before a major election, I mean.)
Well, John, your mistake is that you assume that I even have any sanity to begin with. I hate to break it to you, but that tank was emptied a long, long time ago.
Living in Canada.
Where we are desperately trying to squash, or at least muzzle, our own version of bush-in-a-blue-sweatervest in less than two weeks.
May the god of your choice save us all.
Following the Cubs’ progress through the post-season.
I have installed fresh batteries in the remote and made sure that the Next Channel key is working correctly so that, at the slightest mention of politics I can get away in a jiff.
A Canadian friend of mine who doesn’t follow US politics asked when the election was. My reply? “Not soon enough”
I’ll be too busy stockpiling beans, flour, and drinking water to pay attention to politics.
Reading about 1930s fascism!
Hmm. Now that I write it down like that, it’s not looking quite so sane-making.
2) Team Fortress 2
3) 3D animation
If I need more than that to survive, then it ain’t worth it. ;)
I’m with you Marko. Only I am also thinking of adding firearms to the list. Or at least getting extra chummy with the people I know who have one. Can’t be too careful during an apocalypse and all.
Drinking, mostly. I intend to stay liquored up until well after January.
…phone banking for Obama. I won’t wake up on Nov. 5th asking myself “what more could I have done?” like I did in 2004.
1) I don’t even touch televisions.
2) I don’t leave New Zealand.
Sweet, sweet nyquil.
Perfecting our homebrewing. It gives us an excuse to drink a lot.
Hugging my Scalzi doll and praying to God Obama wins.
Or drunk. Whichever comes first.
Planning what I’ll be writing for NaNoWriMo.
For some reason I’m pleased now that most everybody in the US, no matter what persuasion or affiliation, is probably saying: [address, optional] [adjective(s), optional] [deity, saint, or supernatural being of preference; or perhaps some famous personage, kind of like “Dear Isaac Newton” or something; plurality is quite alright; optional] [preposition of choice, optional] please let this [swear or pseudo-swear word of choice; plurality fine; optional] election be over!
Like in my case: Dear marinara-sauce-drenched Spaghetti Monster above, please let this f*cking election be over!
Unison! Or, like, the closest we ever get to it.
Enjoying the month before the 2012 election’s going to start.
Lucky me, I will be leaving on the 15th to drive to Tuxla-Gutierrez, Mexico, to race in La Carrera Panamericana 2008. I’ll spend seven days rally racing through Mexico, seven nights getting hammered on mescal, and I won’t be back home until just after the election!
I’m just tuning it all out except for the comedic/satirical commentary if it’s funny. I already know who I am voting for and no one will sway me, so I don’t need to pay attention anymore. I just tell everyone that yes, I’ve been registered to vote; I actually *pre*registered at age 17 which makes me that much more hardcore than anyone else, and yes I will vote, and why don’t we discuss hurricane season instead? *shrug*
Looking forward to SNL tonight, and working for local/national candidates this week & registering voters.
I’ve already voted and even got a paper ballot so I have a paper trail (and yes, I made sure that I had a #2 pencil and filled in all of the ovals.
Normally horse races don’t do much for me but every four years I appreciate the Melbourne Cup being run on the first Tuesday in November: it helps to keep the coverage of presidential elections muted a bit down here.
Wondering why so many who spend so much time tracking the campaign to the most minute, gossipy detail at the same time feel obliged to groan about how torturous and brain-numbing it all is.
I suspect they’d say they have to make the sacrifice for the good of the country…but I get the feeling I’m not the only one that’s going to miss election season (all two years of it) when it’s over, despite all the hand wringing.
(I mean, what else am I going to watch? Football???)
Indulging my new superstition that if I stop keeping track of the campaign for one minute, McCain/Palin will do something nuts that turns the whole fucking thing around. As long as I am diligent, Obama will continue to pull ahead.
That sounds like I think I’m the center of the universe, but in fact I just have a profound belief in Murphy’s Law.
Ohio is a swing state, isn’t it?
Lately I’ve been cranking the opera on my mp3 player to drown out the various pundits/debates/etc that co-workers insist on listening to at ridiculous volumes. And of course one of them will be listening to the over-the-air feed in one room and the other is listening to the cable feed in a different room so they’re out of synch by a few seconds. Which doesn’t make me want to kill someone at all!
On a completely different subject… my copy of Your Hate Mail Will Be Graded showed up today. Can’t wait to read it! And the letter to Athena in the chapbook totally made me cry.
Graduate school. Not owning a TV helps, too.
Sanity? SANITY!?! BWAHAHAHAHAAAAA!
Working my three jobs helps keep me too busy to pay attention to much more than headlines. Thank the gods.
LittleBigPlanet. Oh, so much LittleBigPlanet.
That said, I still watch the debates with friends so we can make snarky comments.
Drinking heavily and praying to the gods that do not exist that some how every current candidate for president is abducted by aliens and replaced with people who aren’t useless wastes of my oxygen.
Well the news channels in the UK have finally woken up to there being some home grown political fun and games going on so we are seeing much less of Mcain and Obama.
If anyone over there cares, Stalin (Gordon Brown, PM) has reshuffled his cabinet (Administration) and brought back “The Prince of Darkness” from exile in Strasbourg. With a nickname like that you’d be right in thinking Peter (soon to be Lord) Mandleson has something of a reputation – I imagine his copy of “The Prince” is heavily annnotated, correcting Machiavelli’s mistakes.
If that wasn’t enough, “Mad Boris”, Lord Mayor of London has unilaterally fired the country’s most senior policeman, despite not actually being allowed to do so. Boris Johnson was that that blond floppy-haired idiot waving the olympic flag on top of a London bus at the Bejing closing ceremony. It’s generally acknowledged that he was elected on a comedy ticket becuase his predessessor (Red Ken) was getting far too sensible. He’s a descendant of George II – which may explain a few things.
With most of Europe sneering at Brown (and Sarkozy has the nose for it) over the nosedive the UK economy is taking in tandem with the US, we are gettng a short break from the endless analysis.
No doubt they’ll be back as soon as one of the candidates says something particularly amusing. We get as much coverage of the US elections as we do of our own (actually slightly more, because the reporters don’t have to be quite as careful) – so no doubt come November I’ll be as sick of it as the rest of you!
Reading some new novel – Zooey’s Story, something like that, and NaNoWriMo.
I press the mute button when a political commercial comes while I’m watching TV or when McCain or Palin wind up on NPR.
I’ve chosen to embrace the chaos, in part by (verbally) poking some of the super-liberals and super-conservatives I know for my own amusement. Passing on ridiculous stories and referencing Democracy Now! and The Sean Hannity Show in the same sentence. Things like that….
I don’t watch TV or listen to the radio or even browse news sites much, so aside from reading about it on people’s blogs, I’m pretty well protected from insanity. ;) Snarking along with a big group of people during the debates is fun, but for the most part I ignore the analyses. I can make up my own mind on what I think without help, thanks.
Hurricane Ike knocked most of the election drivel off the local TV, by first knocking out electricity and then enticing every local channel to cover the Hurricane aftermath 24×7 in infinite minutia…come to think of it, just like they cover the election. I’m not sure which is worse, one more month of campaigning or another hurricane.
I think I’ll read Anathem straight through.
Reading _Whatever_. Yes, I am a hopeless suck-up. But Sane, SANE, I tell you bwah hah hah haaaa! Oh, and embroidering dust-masks with semi-precious stones. No reason.
Just think, only 49 months til someone other than these 2 bozos that got the nomination this time around will have a chance.
It’s going to be a loooong 4 years, no matter how the election comes out. Democrats should be happy, they get either a hardcore leftist to win, or a moderate Democrat on the Republican ticket.
As for what I’m going to do? Play lots of xbox, currently mostly Rock Band 2 and Duke Nukem 3d, but with Fallout 3 coming out RSN, that will probably hold me over.
Telling every Obama representative that accosts me on the street that, yes, I have indeed registered to vote in Ohio!
I will be spending 2 of those 4 weeks manning an early voting location. No, I am not a masochist. Whatever gave you that idea?
#40 You think you get different bozos? Nah. Win or lose, Obama will almost certainly be in the next round. And Hillary certainly won’t give up while there’s breath in that body. McCain may not live so long, but if he does, he’ll ba back too. And of course Nader will be there to siphon off a few liberal votes in every state that puts him on the ballot. Any new players will probably be worse.
Eh. I like politics. Actually, I’m a politics junkie. And, as a partisan liberal Democrat to the very bone, I am (for a change) enjoying this election season.
But even I draw the line at TV political ads and endless pundit blather.
So I’m keeping the TV off, mostly: just tuning in for debates and Tina Fey.
Just got my copy of “Hate Mail,” which also helps. I don’t want to get all fangirl here but, my god, I really enjoy your writing.
Reading Zoe’s Tale, which I just bought today :D
Also, ditto what Chris said. We have our own puppets to cast ballots on up here.
I’m a psych nurse, so my sanity is already in question. I turn off NPR when they discuss the election now, and from this point forward will only tolerate election coverage from the Daily Show and Colbert Report.
If you live in or near any of these states:
Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin,
please think about calling up your local campaign office and volunteering for a few hours if you care about which way the election’s going to go. Each state could potentially be in play on Election Day, and statistically, working two hours on a weekend afternoon knocking on doors or a weekday evening manning the phones turns out three or four people who wouldn’t have voted otherwise. That’s like getting to vote four or five times yourself.
Ignoring everything except the local candidates and the stupid Prop 102 which defines marriage as between 1 woman and 1 man, among other fundie nonsense.
Some weeks ago you posted a semi-gleeful entry about conservatives deserting the GOP for Bob Barr–thereby siphoning votes away from McCain.
I suppose I am proving out your theory.
As a conservative, I’ve decided to vote for Bob Barr. McCain’s complicity in the bailout bill finally convinced me that I cannot vote for him with a clear conscience. (I had been tending in this direction previously.)
I realize that Bob Barr has zero chances of winning, and that this is effectively a vote for Obama. If you look at the numbers in the swing states, Obama is going to win anyway.
I would rather use my vote to send a message to the GOP. The GOP can no longer claim to be the party of fiscal conservatism. The GOP is now just another big-government party that occasionally thumps the Bible to placate the Religious Right. The current GOP leaders are no better than Pelosi & Company. Sad but true.
I only hope that Obama will not be the disaster that his record and his rhetoric suggest. We’ll see.
Beaming down to a terraformed cavern inside an asteroid, and waiting the election out.
Wading right into the middle of it, reading every blog, watching every cable channel, checking every polling site on a daily basis.
I’ve become a political junkie this year. It eats at my soul, and yet I can’t get enough. The only way out is through.
>> What will you be doing to preserve your sanity?
1. Continuing to live in Brighton, England.
2. Drinking to excess – almost nightly? (until marriage/happiness ensues – whichever is sooner)
3. Consoling myself with the fact that, no matter how stupid Palin is or is not, it’s not quite as ridiculous as the fact that our (probable) next Prime Minister is a great, great, great, great, great grandson of William IV (via several shags out of wedlock with Dorothy Jordan)
I work on Capitol Hill, so my odds of sanity preservation are poor. So far, I’ve been getting by with Star Trek reruns, elephant macros, and Sudoku.
Being someone who used to work in politics it doesn’t bother me that much; I’m just waiting for McCain’s next “Crazy Ivan” move. Being someone who has a BA in Economics I prefer to reserve my doom and gloom for the economy. Drinking, the NFL, and the tail end of the Formula 1 season also help.
I persist in thinking of it as the day my next book comes out. And oh, yeah, working on revisions for the next one. That’s all crazy-making enough. Oh, and I refuse to watch any political commercials.
Not answering the phone is key to keeping my sanity. I may actually turn off the landline for the duration.
I’ll be watching this man’s speech when I get down. I know he’s got a lot to do as president of one of our biggest unions, but perhaps he could be persuaded to take a position in Obama’s cabinet, come 2009.
I will be thanking my lucky stars I live in Canada and we have less than weeks to go. Mind you our choices are not, shall we say, as spectacular as yours . . .
les than TWO weeks, that should have read . . .
I’ve been reading a great deal to keep me sane. That and avoiding the news as much as possible.
However I’ll probably volunteer to defeat props 4 and 8 here in California.
Oh yeah, and Mystery Science Theatre 3000.
That helps too.
1. Stay in India.
2. Have a baby due in November.
OK, (2) is not really sanity-preserving. Its just that I’m freaking out about something _other_ than an election in which I can’t vote.
Mailing in my last-second voter registration… (It’s not that I don’t care, it’s just… I procrastinate in *everything*.)
Not that this is preserving my sanity in any way… in VA my vote might actually count.
Andy W I see once again we are sympatico. I was going to say ‘how could anyone in their right minds bring back Mandleson’ when I caught myself just in time – Brown- right mind?? Nah. I did wonder if it was Brown’s way of getting the publicity back on his government rather than the republicans in the US but surely even he isn’t that stupid. Oh what am I saying???
Anyway, it didn’t take the press long to get back on the US election bus did it? Sarah Palin’s comment about Obama partying with terrorists brings everything back to the forefront. Note she didn’t mention the fact that the Bush administration got the Bin Laden family out of the US immediately after 9/11 but then Bush wasn’t partying with the Bin Laden’s, he was merely taking their money. Obviously different, no?
Anyway, personally I love all this election stuff, it’s free entertainment and takes my mind off the rising cost of non-essentials like food and heating!
Dear God – that woman really is totally unhinged!
At this point I can’t help wondering how many Senators/Goveners/etc were former champions for debating societies like the IRA when it was active.
She really, really shouldn’t have gone there…………..
My family and I went to the Obama/Bruce Springsteen rally in Philly yesterday, and I must say that I’m started to get excited about the election. I can’t remember the last time I felt real enthusiasm about a candidate. McCain and Palin were not mentioned by name at all, there was just talk about what is wrong now and what positives there could be if we actually worked on the problems. Maybe I’m naive, but I like the “hope” spin much better than the b/s scare tactic of “your candidate had a tangential association years ago with a bad guy and his name sounds like Osama so he’s a TERRORIST!” This horrendous negative spin against an obviously dedicated and talented candidate has inspired many lazy liberals like me to finally volunteer to canvass. “Yes, we can!”
As I’ve completely lost the ability to discuss politics without losing my shit, I’ll be avoiding all of it like the plague. I know who I’m voting for, and whatever I say isn’t really going to change anyone else’s mind. Plus, staying away from the TV gives me a good excuse to, yanno, *write*!
I’m devoting myself to panic over the melting methane clathrates. Makes the election look positively trivial and cuddly.
Spending time at the farm where we have no cable/dish or antenna – we watch DVDs and the fall colors change for entertainment.
Trying my hardest to ignore it.
As previously I mentioned I don’t live or vote in the US. BUT: for those of you who do, please, please, please, for the sake of each and everyone of us: GET OUT THERE AND VOTE! That is the only way you’ll ever make the madness go away.
Writing about chocolate. That always does good things for my mental state. Well, maybe not so much the writing itself as much as the research I have to do for my reviews . . .
Who said I wanted to preserve it? I’ve been letting election news throttle it since the conventions. I got a tv this year partly so that I can watch the debates and election night in real time. I’ve even started reading new poliblogs on a regular basis, and if that isn’t a sign that I’m giving up my sanity, I don’t know what is.
Oh, and also playing Tetris and watching my favorite TV shows online… that way, I miss not only the repetitive and too-easy-to-see-the-lies-coming-straight-from-McCain’s-mouth commercials, but also the spoilers which SciFi has been airing pretty regularly… almost like they don’t care about ratings!
Since I already read Anathem I’m working on the Baroque Cycle. Unfortunately that will only take a week.
Beyond that, spending my time wondering why Marvel comics sells better than DC even when DC wins all the Harvey awards.
Buying more ammo. Here in the midwest, it’s like a recreational thing. (Don’t worry, John. I have extra for you so you can fit in with your neighbors.)
Fleeing the country for the duration… hopefully the riots will have subsided by the 7th, ’cause that’s when I get back Stateside (via DC, no less! Oy!).
Why, by reading my just-purchased copy of The Last Colony, of course. :)
Actually, I found out that my sanity is a lot easier to maintain now that I’m a journalist in Illinois as opposed to being a journalist in Ohio, as I was in 2000 and 2004. Nobody can claim blame voting machines for the presidential results here.
#75 – For the same reason the lousy TV shows get better ratings than the ones that win Emmy Awards: no one ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people.
As for my sanity, I’ll be reading my pet blogs for reality checks, ranting where I can (like the site that’s turning my handle blue), and sticking my nose into Second Life when the first one gets too much. It’s like my own dandelion patch.
Volunteering for the Obama campaign. 6 days a week.
I’ve stopped watching pundits, analysts, commentators, etc. I’ll watch the actual candidates talk if I’m in the mood. I’ll read the news on the internets. But I am on a “news channel” strike at my place, and it’s because as soon as any one of those idiots starts talking, I feel this strong urge to throw something Very Large and Solid at the television. And, you know, I can’t afford to replace the tv.
So that’s it. No pundits.
Finishing Never Let Me Go by Ishiguro and starting Love in the Time of Cholera. And of course, waiting for the next book in the Android’s Dream Universe.
Maybe, the muse will bless me with a poem about the existential angst I get everytime I see McCain’s constipated smile.
Working a hell of a lot of overtime and donating as much of it as I can to the Obama campaign. Like #62 Bryan, realizing that in Virginia this time, my vote may help.
Listening to bad 80s rock and styling my hair.
Being a certified political junkie, my main worry is not about losing my sanity before November 4th, 2008.* It is about losing my sanity after November 4th, 2008 due to political withdrawal.
I may have to take up some form of hobby. Any suggestions.
*of course there are folks who might consider that, being a political junkie, I am already insane. That said the only risk I take is regaining my sanity on November 5, 2008. ;-)
The, as Conrad put it, “fascination of the abomination” has me in its bloodstained grip. Can’t turn it off.
The original question assumes facts not in evidence. I’m afraid I’ll need to see documentation of this alleged “sanity” before I can answer.
I’ll be celebrating the publication of my first book on the 21st (two weeks before Election Day), and then heralding its arrival with a publication party on the 28th (one week before Election Day).
The party is open to all, at New York City’s Books of Wonder bookstore. See uspresidents.livejournal.com for details, and feel free to join us!
Rating all my mp3s. Only 4989 more to go!
Thanking my lucky stars that I live in New York and don’t have to watch campaign ads.
I’d like to be hiding out in bed with the covers pulled up over my head until it’s over, but that’s not exactly practical.
Trying to decide who to vote for in the ACT election on the 18th. Nowhere near as sexy as US federal elections, I admit. But the ads are just as awful and intrusive. Both Labour and Liberal are big on cheap-looking neagative commercials about their opposition.
The only people not blaring out of my TV every ad break or stuffing reams of dead trees in my mailbox (despite the No Junk Mail sign) are the Greens, and I’m tempted to vote for them on those grounds alone. It’s always handy to give them the balance of power.
Other than that, lots of good books and DVDs are an excellent way to avoid every falovour of politics. Or even getting off my substantial arse and taking a walk to enjoy the cherry blossoms and other Spring blooms…
Two weeks before the election, I’m flying to Europe, where I’ll be intensively studying Hungarian.
This is the only context in which two weeks spent intensively studying Hungarian can help preserve your sanity.