I don't know about you but I, for one, will be glad when this whole election process is over, no matter who wins. I remember when elections kicked off on the Fourth of July and didn't get really cranked up until Labor Day. This one has been going on forever - or so it seems - and I am just worn out from all the mudslinging and computer generated phone calls and television commercials. I am especially tired of all the television commercials. But I've been paying so much attention to the election that I'm not sure how I will spend my time when it is over.
Well if you're like me - and judging from the reaction I've gotten to some of my latest columns, more and more of you are not - you'll need a way to pass the time while you wind down from campaign overkill. Let me tell you a few of the things I will be doing.
That's right. I'll be writing a lot of letters. The old fashioned kind - with stationary and envelopes and stamps. Y'all do remember stamps, don't you? They were three cents when I was coming up and I honestly can't tell you how much they are now, but I still get letters from folks and haven't gotten around to answering my mail for a long time - so I will be writing a lot of letters over the next few weeks and if I owe you one, well, check your mailbox - it's on its way.
I think I'll turn off the television set for a while and play a few board games, too. I know I'm sounding a little old fashioned, but winter is coming and I can build a fire and make some hot chocolate and set up a card table in the living room and invite a few friends over to play some games. I am partial to Scrabble and Trivial Pursuit. I'm pretty good at both, too. Let me know if you want to challenge me, but I warn you - I cheat.
My lovely wife Lisa likes to play card games and my in-laws and their friends are absolutely addicted to a dominoes game called Mexican Train, but I don't like to play games that are decided by the luck of the draw. I have spent a long, long time developing a storehouse of useless knowledge and I want a chance to use it.
I have a lot of work around the house and yard that needs doing, too. Honesty compels me to admit that I have used my obsession with presidential politics as an excuse to avoid taking care of a lot of items on my honey-do list - some of which go back to the Reagan administration - but starting next week - maybe even Tuesday, Election Day, I am going to, in the immortal words of that great philosopher, Larry the Cable Guy, "git 'er done!"
I have leaves to rake and gutters to clean out; a deck to stain and windows to wash and a whole basement full of odds and ends to sort through and throw away - I don't think I'll have much trouble staying busy.
And as long as I am being honest, I am a little behind in my school work, too. I have papers to grade and Powerpoints to put together and essays to evaluate - plus I need to get out and promote my new book so folks can have one at Christmas. I'm behind on that, too. Things just sort of slide when you are watching the news and clicking on Internet sites 24-7 for several months.
But Tuesday is the big day and after that I can settle in and return to a normal life - or whatever passes for normal when you're me.
But before Tuesday gets here, I have one more 'lection story I just have to share. Unlike a lot of the stories I tell, this one is absolutely true.
When I was growing up I went to the mountains with my mama and them one weekend. When we drove through Gainesville - which is the poultry capitol of the world, you know. Marvin Griffin, who was running for governor, was having a big chicken dinner and political rally. There were thousands of folks there. We stopped at a filling station for gas and my daddy asked the old boy pumping gas who was going to win the gubernatorial race. He assured us that Griffin would win in a landslide.
The polls were saying the same thing, right up until Election Day.
But Marvin Griffin didn't win. Carl Sanders did.
Later that year we were driving through Gainesville again and stopped at that same filling station. The same old feller was there and Daddy told him, "I was here last summer and you said Griffin was going in. What happened?"
The guy looked right at us and said, "I guess folks was eating one way and voting another."
Maybe that's what they are doing now. I guess we'll find out soon. Either way, I have plenty to do to keep me busy.
Anybody for a game of Scrabble?