Sunday, October 5, 2008

Changing Weather & Shifting Tides

It's been a while since I've posted - that wasn't on purpose; things just got a mite cattywampus around the Nest. Since last we chatted, summer has ended and autumn has begun. It's one of my favorite times of the year - cool enough that it's prudent for you to you dig out a quilt, but the air warms up to the point that short sleeves are still a good idea by mid-afternoon. The leaves haven't really started to change here just yet, but there's the occasional crimson harbinger of fall on the sidewalk.

Even Spooky's getting ready for the shift. She enjoys the crisper weather - she always says it reminds her of pleasant times on the north face of K2, but I know she's making that up - her ascent was up the west face, not matter what she tries to tell you.

Seriously, I adore fall. There's the smell of wood smoke in the air as people christen their fireplaces for the season, pumpkins and gourds are everywhere you go, cinnamon spice candles suddenly replace citrus ones, and classes have settled into a rhythm of sorts. It's also an election time in the midst of a lean economic year, which can bring out all manner of cranks and kooks. (In my opinion, our Founding Fathers were very wise in promoting the idea of a secret ballot.) Just how much of a geek-sign is it that I not only enjoy watching presidential (and VP) debates, but excitedly make popcorn for the occasion? Yeah, that's what I was afraid of. Well, it's my TV (and my popcorn), so I suppose that makes it all right.

I'll steer clear of making this overtly partisan, but I've picked my horse for this race and you can rest assured that I'll be at the $2 window when the time rolls around. In my town, election results from the local precincts are posted throughout the night after the polls close - a gaggle of cold-defying wonks clad in wool coats (and armed with Thermoses and webbed aluminum lawn chairs for "comfort") gather at the local fire station to watch the numbers go up. I guess it's our version of the smoke-filled room. (Hey, waitaminnit - what's in that Thermos, Jim Bob?)

Go vote! I don't care for who (well, I do, but that's another story), but a big chunk of the world's population would ride two days on muleback for the opportunity that over half of us can't be bothered with. Exercise your Constitutional rights! No one likes a flabby voter!

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