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Columnist, Sheila Moss, is humor writer from  Tennessee. She writes  a weekly human interest column about daily life and the funny things that happen to everyone.

   She has written for  the Daily News of Kingsport,   Griffin Journal, Oakridge Now, Atlanta Woman Magazine, Aberdeen Examiner, Angleton Advocate,  and Smyrna AM, a supplement of the Murfreesboro Daily News Journal. She has been published by Voyageur Press, McGraw Hill, and the good folks at Guidepost Books.  Her articles have appeared in numerous anthologies and other publications, both in print and online.

    She is a former board member and past  Editor of  the, website of  the National Society of Newspaper Columnists, the oldest and largest professional organization for columnists. She is the Web Editor of Southern  and  a founder of the Southern Humorists writers' organization. She is writer, editor, and webmaster of

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It's Almost Over....

It's Almost Over

Next week we will know who our next President is, unless it is another of those count, recount, and no account fiascoís like we had several years ago in Florida. They say that everyone has just about quit using the old dimple and chad method now, except a few counties in one state, Idaho I think it is.

Now they have newer and better ways to mess up the vote, touch-screen machines with no paper back up. I suppose thatís one way to be sure there is no recount. A few people around these parts claim they touched one candidate on the screen and the X lit up for another. Election officials say it is ďfinger rollingĒ also known as ďblame the voter.Ē

Some polls still use the old one-arm bandits where you flip the levers and pull the big red handle to register your vote and open the curtains when you are done. The voting machines at my polling place were small and had buttons to push to light up the X and a big red button to push when you were done.

All machines have the problem of making it hard to vote for a write-in.

Iíve heard of new machines that scan a paper ballot and if there is a problem, you can fix it while you are still there. We donít have such fancy technology in these parts, so I guess all you can do is vote and hope it is counted right.

Apparently, complaints of machines not working right are not widespread and there have not been too many. After standing in the long lines, Iíd hate to think it was for nothing.

I early voted this year. Iíd seen and heard enough. I knew who I was voting for so why wait? I thought Iíd save time by early voting, but the line was really long. I guess everyone heard that there was going to be a record turnout at the polls and wanted to avoid the rush.

I read in the paper that 50% of the registered voters have already voted. So, the polls may not be very crowded on Election Day after all.

I still remember the last election where I messed up and forgot to vote early and then had to vote after work on Election Day. I kicked myself the whole time I stood in line for not voting early. Nothing you can do but wait, though, unless you decide not to vote.

Itís pretty amazing really, how people are willing to wait forever if thatís what it takes to cast their ballot. Standing in that line as it snakes back and forth lets you know that you are doing something important, participating in something bigger than you are. It never fails to give you a feeling of pride seeing the democratic process in action.

I was surprised at how many candidates were on the ballot for President. Gee, Iíd never heard of any of them except for the two main candidates. Afterwards, Honey and I got into a discussion about third party candidates. He says they are not good because they cannot win and they draw votes away that could cause a good candidate to lose.

I can see the point, but I think third party candidates are still important. Running for President can give a candidate a forum to discuss issues that need to be brought up, but might not be discussed otherwise. They also bring issues to the forefront that may later be taken up by the major parties as part of their platform.

So, thatís about all I have to say about voting except that I hope the candidate I voted for wins. Itís a bit of a letdown to go to all the trouble of voting only to have your candidate lose. But at least Iíve participated and done my part and have earned the right to say ďI told you soĒ when things donít go the way they should.

Copyright 2008 Sheila Moss

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