On Voting – Or, Things I Learned about the Democratic Process and Myself While Working Primary Polls

1. The act of voting, and the responsibility of such an act, is singular and noteworthy.

2. My destiny as the spiritual descendent of Marian the Librarian was never so obvious as when I kept saying “cross-listed” instead of “cross-filed.”

3. There’s a right way and a wrong way to talk about Hillary Clinton with me. Jokes about my name got old back in 1992.

4. Do political types smoke more than the average American? Do Delaware County residents?

5. Retail and politics have transferrable skill sets. Feeling fine with public speaking is helpful; friendliness is key. Mostly, you just have to know how to greet people without sounding like a moron.

6. Witnessing election judges dismantle polling machines at the end of a 13-hour election day is simultaneously inspiring and terrifying. (At the end of the day, the democratic process depends on five women of a certain age wrestling with copies and copies of register tape?)

7. The world is so small: connections are there if you only look for them.

8. Never doubt the power of a woman in heels and perfectly manicured nails to teach you a thing or two about politics–about greeting voters with authenticity and patience every time, asking good questions, maintaining good humor and humility, speaking up when necessary to keep the process moving, and asking for help when you have no idea how to use your smartphone to email a photo of a two-year-old who’s accompanied her mother to the polls for the first time.

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