LIsa Falkenberg gets old school.
Those of us who passed on early voting and will trek to the polls today have been deemed by some pundits and professors procrastinators, indecisive or indifferent.
I'm not offended. If you think about it, the rush to the voting booths is a beautiful illustration of the excitement stirred up by the most important presidential election in many of our lifetimes, certain to make history by producing either the first black president or female vice president.
But for me, it's all about fuddy-duddy nostalgia.
Long lines buzzing like telephone wire, the camaraderie of the common experience, the tension of knowing you're taking part in the final act of a high-stakes drama. The little "I voted" stickers, badges of pride that, like team jerseys or face paint, seem way cooler the official game day.
Falkenberg also got a local turnout prediction for today:
Harris County Clerk Beverly Kaufman told me Monday that she thinks the number of Election Day voters could rival the early voting turnout.
"I was hoping that at least half the people would wait until Election Day," she said. "We've got 728 polling places open (today) so I hope someone will show up."
She's joking, of course, about that last part. She believes the number of souls who voted early and by mail, 730,000, could be doubled today, a turnout totaling more than 1.46 million voters.
That would represent an astounding 74 percent of about 1.96 million registered voters in Harris County.
Today will in most respects be a pretty normal day for me, at least until the polls close. Tonight I'll be on your teevee to tell you what it all means. Before that, if you vote today or spend time at a polling location, please leave a comment and tell me where you were and how it went. I'd love to get some anecdotal evidence if I can. If you see a problem, please be sure to report it. And above all, have fun and enjoy what's happening. Today is truly a special day.
UPDATE: For what it's worth, the two polling places I drove past on the way to work both appeared to be busy. They were Hogg Middle School, in my precinct, and Roberts Elementary.Posted by Charles Kuffner on November 04, 2008 to Election 2008