For rent: one voter

I’m thinking of chucking it all and becoming a Democrat. Or something even more extreme, like a Green or something. Maybe I’ll just start my own party, and call it the Positive People Party or the Future is Super Awesome! Party.

Because I just can’t do this anymore.

Since I was able to form a political opinion, I have been conservative. Sure, on the social issues, I’m as progressive as they come, but on most fundamental things that government is about, I’ve always been a Republican.

How Republican? I voted for Bob Dole. Bob Dole, people. I voted against Bill Clinton (this was before Lewinsky, even) and for that fine, upstanding American who is as charismatic as a pay phone.

But lately, being Republican is making me feel even dirtier than the thought of being a Democrat. Between the Patriot Act, the war in Iraq and the party’s complete whacked-outtedness over gay marriage, I just can’t see myself voting another straight-party ballot. You heard me. I vote straight party, baby.

Maybe it’s all that time I spend hanging out at the lesbian coffee house (with my family, of course), but I just find myself needing something positive to look to. One night, we were there when the Kucinich people were having a meeting. In case you haven’t heard of this guy, he’s a Congressman from Ohio who wants to create a Department of Peace, to balance out the Department of Defense. At first hearing, this idea was the subject of intense derision for Tim and I. But then I heard him on NPR, and I was like, ‘Why can’t the world be like this?’

I built most of my beliefs in the Republican Party on a foundation of trust in American people. The trust especially included American corporations and their innate sense of doing the right thing for the country and their employees and customers. I cannot believe how naive that sounds now, but back before Enron and Worldcom and NAFTA, it wasn’t so silly.

Also, I was young. Did I mention that Rush Limbaugh and I share a hometown?

I don’t know where I’m going with this. I need there to be something good about the government. I need to think that our soldiers are fighting and dying for something. I need my friends who are awesome teachers to not be laid off from their jobs because their state governments don’t know how to live with a budget. I need to be able to listen to a politician for longer than two seconds without rolling my eyes and making a cynical comment.


The first time I ran a 10K (6.2 miles, for those of you who are metrically-impaired) was in 1999. Tim and I had trained fairly seriously for a few months beforehand. I suffered lots of setbacks with shin splints and other injuries, but that spring, I did it. I thought that I was going to die, but I did it.

Today, I ran 10K while pushing my son in the jogging stroller around the Forest Park loop (read: very hilly). Oh, and I ran it on Saturday too.

That’s right, my friends. Beth got tired of looking at those same numbers on the scale, week after week. 50 pounds — goodbye! Only 9 more to go.

Sigh. It only took me four and a half months to get off the last 10…