2013-11-15 / Columnists

Boyleing Points

Widespread Farce
By Kevin Boyle

Apparently my Nightmare on Election Street was hardly unique. Numerous people told me they had bizarre experiences and frustrations. And it wasn’t just the voters. I heard the poll workers at one place were kept locked inside until 11:30 p.m.

It was like good old fashioned detention. They were in a school and couldn’t leave. I think they had to sit still with clasped hands. The election boss told them they’d get docked $75 if they tried leaving. And I’m pretty sure they had to write on the blackboard I Will Do Better Next Time one hundred times. Some old timers were expecting the paddle to come out.

All the votes had to be counted, of course. But that was no easy task since the tiny six point font which made the ballots look like the ingredients list on the back of a small vitamin made counting so tough. The write-in ballots were another matter. The fix was in. There was just a tiny little space – if your name was Ben Hur you had a chance. Somebody at the Board of Elections didn’t want any write-ins for John Catsimatides or Carlos Danger. All my Italian friends with more than two vowels, were out of the running. I wanted to vote for Louie Pastina but I only got as far as Lou Past and I didn’t want to cause confusion among the poll workers, some of whom knew scientist Louis Pasteur personally.

And the poor poll workers didn’t need any more stress. They were already booked to work 15 or 16 hours that day and that wasn’t counting detention. Maybe the Board of Elections should offer eight hours shifts? Nah, that would make too much sense. And besides, that might make things less amusing. The exhausted workers snipe at each other like they’ve been at sea in a lifeboat together for nine months. After you finally vote, you don’t leave as much as escape. You avoid eye contact on the way out because some poll workers are shooting you the death glare just because you get to leave. I can’t wait til next November. I hear they’re trying something new: hanging chads.

Boyleing Points: Sticking with the political theme I have to go on record. I got the Full de Blasio from none other than Lew Simon. You know Lew who “always returns a call” Simon didn’t call me back though I called him a couple of times. Man, how low can it get for me. I’ve been big timed by Lew Simon.

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