My How Times Have Changed (for the better)

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As I usually do when it’s a quiet Friday and I’m having a little lunch at my desk and I’m missing my Fair New Mexico in ways too numerous to count, I head over to Google, hit the news tab and type in “New Mexico” to see what’s doing back home.

After wading through the politics and sports stories, I found a nice little gem today.

An article with the title:  N.M.’s First Gentleman Takes a Job

I especially loved this quote:

Franco told the Journal last year that when not traveling back and forth between Las Cruces and Santa Fe, he has filled his time in the state’s capital city with volunteer activities, yardwork at the Governor’s Mansion and a rediscovered passion for painting and drawing.

Wow how times are changing in ways that are both surprising and positive. In this year’s election, a record number of women were elected to public office which means there is truly a cause to start to better define the role of the “First Gentleman.”

I’m no expert in this area, but to my recollection first ladies have often worked with charities and other groups as part of their work alongside their spouse, or they quietly step to the background and work their own lives. To read the quote from Mr. Franco it sounds about right.

It was not so long ago you would have read that exact same quote from woman when asked what she does while her husband runs the state.

Instead it’s the female Governor running the state and her husband being a stay at home guy, and now he’s picked up a part time job. Why not?

I think it’s awesome, doubly so that it’s my homestate at the front of this trend.

My fair New Mexico, a little more progressive than even I ever thought.





Source: Albuquerque Journal

Image from What Comes Around Goes Around



Oh Go On Now

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You know what I’m going to say. So, so predictable. But I’m going there anyway.

After what seems like, oh I don’t know, eighty years, the Presidential election is tomorrow.

Finally.

This whole election season has been weird and ugly and I’m pretty much ready for it to be over.

I truly hope that by the end of tomorrow it really is over. No crazy. No ugly. Just a clean, clear winner.

In order for that to happen, everyone needs to vote. Even if your think your vote doesn’t matter, vote anyway.

Hell, it gives you credibility when you want to complain later.

Why not? It’s the hip thing to do and hey, the new voting machines are kind of fun! Whoo!

If you have already cast your vote then you are entitled to one chocolate chip cookie. Buy yourself a good one and enjoy it.

The calories don’t count when you are being a good American citizen.

And if you haven’t voted yet, then go and cast your vote and when you are through, you too are entitled to a calorie free ooey gooey cookie.

Got it? Vote = guilt free chocolate chip cookie.

All right now. You know what to do.****






****This blog post is for entertainment purposes only. Of course really nummy choccy chip cookies have calories but hey, let’s all pretend for a moment that they don’t and just reward ourselves for doing the right thing. Neither the Oh Fair New Mexico blog nor Karen Fayeth can be held liable for any damage to your waistline from the ingestion of really tasty chocolate chip cookies. Votes don’t equal cookies but maybe you can make it so. Just vote, ok? Whether or not you enjoy a cookie afterwards is up to you. Thanks for listening.


Image from Babble.




Well That’s Sort Of Epic

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Yesterday was a pretty monumental day for me. So much important stuff happening on just one little ol’ Wednesday in October.

First off, it was Halloween. All Hallows Eve. The day of costumes and candy and belly aches and trick or treat. For many people, Halloween is their Christmas.

Being the old scrooge that I am, there was no costuming going on for me (or for The Good Man).





But that’s ok, I celebrated by watching “It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” and eating dried cherries instead of candy since we don’t get any trick or treaters. How grown up of me to make that choice. How unlike me to make that choice! Sugar is *awesome*.

But pumpkins and goblins were but one of the big events of the day.

Yesterday was also the big huge spectacular parade down Market Street in San Francisco to celebrate the World Series winning San Francisco Giants.

Rock oooon!

I wasn’t able to attend in person, but I was able to watch it all live on TV and on the ‘net and wow, what a fun day!!





And THEN when all of that crazy happy fun celebration was done, The Good Man and I went to visit our local County Elections Office. Such a solemn follow up to a happy confetti party! But here’s the thing, when we moved this year, I changed all of my address info with the DMV and nicely asked the DMV to update my voter records.

As we got closer to the election, I noticed that I didn’t get my sample ballot in the mail and I didn’t get my vote-by-mail ballot either.

So we dropped by the busy office and got that all sorted out. Turns out they had my new address properly entered, but for some reason I wasn’t listed as “active”. So she ticked the box, clicked save and I was good.

Then we figured, hey, while we’re here, let’s go ahead and vote.





I felt sort of weirdly proud and a bit patriotic and awfully grown up to be standing there in a polling booth with The Good Man right next door as we cast our respective ballots. There were a few of the crazy California propositions that I could have gone either way on and heading into the polls, The Good Man joked about us voting exact opposite of each other to simply net-net our votes.

Ok, ok, we didn’t do that but it certainly seemed like a good solution. Voting in California is a strange, wacky and time consuming process. Anyhow, we used the electronic voting machines and made our selections and I cast my ballot.

Now that it’s done, I think from here on out I shouldn’t have to see any more political ads, be subjected to any more smarmy politician faces on the local, state or national level and I shouldn’t have to read any more politically driven internet crap.

Am I right? I think I am.

In other words: I’m out! : brush hands together :

Or in the immortal words of Doris Day, whatever will be will be.

But hey, what a day. Celebrated America’s pastime, voted in America’s big election and then danced around by the light of the almost full moon on all hallows eve.

Wait…I chose fruit over candy and I voted? What the hell is happening to me!?!?!




_____________________

Costume photo found at Sanitaryum.com.

San Francisco Giants parade photos from the SFGiants Instagram stream.

Voting sticker photo Copyright 2012, Karen Fayeth, subject to the Creative Commons license in the right column of this page, and taken with an iPhone5 and the Camera+ app.




Growing Into My Opinions

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A knot of anxiety, excitement and trepidation tangled up in my gut as I approached the table and handed my driver’s license to the severe looking woman with a ruler in one hand and a cup of coffee in the other.

I was a trembling 19 year old, and it was time to vote in my first presidential election. She would be the first poll worker I’d encounter in my young life, but not the last.

I’d been raised in a very conservative home and since dear ol’ dad was a staunch Republican, he had let me know pretty clear who he thought should be the choice. But mostly he was just very clear that I should vote.

On polling day, I knew I had the right to make my own choices, so I thought a lot about both candidates and what they promised. With my mind made up, nervous but ready, I went into the polling booth and cast my vote.

There was a very satisfying tactile response from the voting machine. Click, click, click, then yank the lever. The curtains pop open like a low budget talent show, aaaaand you’re done.

I’ve voted in every presidential election since my first in 1988. My choices have ranged over the years from conservative to liberal, up down, back and forth, east and west. I always vote after doing some research and doing a gut check to see what I think is right.

My choices have not always been the victor or even popular, but that’s ok. My vote was cast.

Over the years, I didn’t usually vote in the minor elections or even the mid-terms, but since moving to California, I’ve been better about that. I’ve voted in almost all the elections that have passed through, including the elections where there wasn’t much to vote about.

And so here in mid-October, it’s time to start thinking about voting again. November 2nd looms large on the horizon.

For the State of California, this is a big election. We choose a new governor from two really poor choices (I don’t want to vote for either one, but I guess I’ll have to pick). This is also a big election for the country as many Congressional seats are up for election.

Even if you think your vote doesn’t matter, please, I’m asking you nicely, get out and vote.

Many candidates and pundits are not only expecting that people won’t vote, in some cases, they are counting on the fact that certain demographics won’t vote.

Prove ’em wrong. Vote anyway. Vote just because you can. Vote because it’s the one of the few times you feel like you get to make your voice heard.

I’m not here to lobby one side against the other.

I’m not here to back any candidate.

I’m not here to back any party’s agenda…

I’m just saying…vote, ok?

As a final thought…

A few years ago I signed up to vote by mail. It makes things very easy, and I’m more likely to cast my vote in any given election because of this simple process.

But sometimes I do miss that nervous knot I still get in my gut when walking into a polling place. It’s so official, almost ceremonial. There is a reverence for voting that you can only get at an official polling place.

The word knot is the subject of this week’s Theme Thursday