Tuesday, August 14 , 2018, 11:27 am | Partly Cloudy 73º


She Said, Z Said: Mock the Vote, and Tell Me Where the Bathrooms Are

We get that voting is good for democracy but a good election script includes ghosts of Hollywood past

Z: The first time I got to vote was Mondale vs. Reagan. That’s when I learned you don’t always vote for your guy, but sometimes against the other guy. Which makes me realize that the Republicans must be very sad by now. They haven’t had anyone to vote for in a long time.

She: I think the first time I voted was Ford vs. Carter. Ford won because of all of those pratfall gags that Chevy Chase did on SNL. Everyone in junior high thought he’d make a much funnier president.

Z: You voted in junior high school? That’s awesome. The first time I took Koss to vote was Bush vs. Gore. He was only a 1-year-old, but I wanted to make sure he learned to vote early and often. I make sure he still goes with me to vote every time.

She: Which he’ll make fun of you for in another few years. By the time he gets to vote, there won’t be any voting booths left. It will all be online.

Z: Which makes me sad. I love going to the voting booth, and chatting with all the old ladies about the election. I always ask who’s winning, and they always say, “Democracy.”

She: No, they don’t.

Z: OK, but it’d be cool if they did. Mostly they say, “Huh?” I repeat myself, and then they point me toward the bathrooms.

She: I actually worked at a polling booth when we lived in West Hollywood. It was awesome. I spent the day shooting the breeze with Norma Desmond and Boris Karloff. If you asked them who was winning, they’d tell you a vicious 20-minute story about Theda Bara.

Z: I have no idea who any of those people are, but I do remember you liked the polling station.

She: I still like the notion of going to the voting booth, but I’ve been a permanent absentee voter for about a decade now. I only vote by mail.

Z: That’s just because you like to decorate things and mail them.

She: I don’t usually decorate my ballot. But that’s an excellent idea.

Z: Careful. They might confuse your glitter and confetti with hanging chads.

She: I like voting by mail. I’m not rushed. I can sit at home with my three different voter’s guides and figure out how I’m supposed to vote on things, and cast my ballot right then and there. It’s very efficient.

Z: But not very romantic.

She: I can light a candle, if that will help.

Z: I understand the whole efficiency thing. Doing it by mail or online would take far fewer resources.

She: I vote and I’m green, plus I get to fill out my forms in advance and hopefully influence your vote and my parents’. So I get to feel superior in at least four different ways. That’s what I call rocking the vote!

Z: But there’s still something about voting that should be public and civic. It’s a chance, however tiny, to engage with other voters.

She: And there’s very little yelling at voting booths, unlike the six months leading up to the voting day.

Z: I’ve stayed away from all the Facebook wars. People have been losing friends over this election, and it’s really gotten ridiculous.

She: I know. I’m almost ready to embrace the cat pictures just so I don’t have to read another political diatribe I disagree with.

Z: And the ones you agree with?

She: Much more palatable, but still getting old at this point. Honestly, I’m rooting for the end of all of those awful, mean and stupid campaign ads almost as much as I’m rooting for my favorite candidates.

Z: C’mon! Get pumped up for this vote! Who’s winning?

She: Let me tell you about the time I went to see Sarah Bernhardt and Buster Keaton.

Z: Are they rappers or something?

She: I give up. The bathrooms are over there.

Z: Yes, dear.

— It sounds as if She and Z might need some help with their ballots. Tell them whom to vote for by emailing .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow She and Z on Twitter: @lesliedinaberg. Click here for previous She Said, Z Said columns.

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