In case you missed it, the U.S. had a General Election for president and other offices last week on Tuesday, November 8. I was in NYC on Monday to have dinner with my sister, and we meandered over to Rockefeller Center, which was crazy-resplendent with flags, bunting, lights projected on the buildings and the skating rink, and tent-like outdoor broadcast booths and cameras on booms all set up in preparation for the next day. The vibe seemed hectic, even a bit hellish to me, but my sister loved it.
Election Day was a beautiful, mild day roundabout Exit 151 and indeed across the country = no excuses for not getting to the polls. Heavy turnout usually favors Democrats, yet there were two whispers of trouble ahead for the Democratic candidate for president. My polling place is in the sapphire blue bellybutton of New Jersey and while there was a line to vote, turnout was noticeably less than in 2008. And one voter in line began talking very loudly and unpleasantly about exclusionary voter ID laws, generally a Republican issue, often with racist overtones. Hindsight is 20/20, and in retrospect that seems a presage of what was to come.
Maybe there was a third sign: I baked a patriotic confetti cake, and it was awful. In more skilled hands or to other palates it might have been acceptable (a master cake baker I'm not), but to me the cake was overly sweet from the candy sprinkles, with an overly soft, almost gooey, collapsing center. A metaphor, perhaps.
Tuesday evening as the polls closed and the voting returns trickled in it became increasingly clear the opinion polls predicting a landslide victory for Hillary Clinton and a chance to flip the Senate to the Democrats had been stunningly wrong. Reflecting the confusion, Wednesday's print NY Times had one headline, while their website had another. In the sober light of morning, it turned out Republican Donald Trump had prevailed by carrying the Electoral College but not winning the popular vote. Trump was president-elect, and his party retained control of both houses of Congress and a majority of governorships and state houses, and is poised to appoint the majority in the Supreme Court.
In the ten days since the election, I finally finished my Debate Socks, knit in Blue Moon Fiber Arts Super Sparkle, colorway Star Speckled Skein. Amazing to relate, the 8% Lurex content is not only adorable, but also comfortable, not scratchy at all. Now that's a win-win.
Round town there's been some trouble with ugly winners, which in some cases has taken on a life of its own. Notably, after a small business near the train station was defaced by graffiti expressing coarse pro-Trump sentiments, some children painted it over with a cheery mural, which was again vandalized. Rinse, repeat, repeat, repeat. The sixth iteration is pictured below.
It was defaced as well. But this time the vandals did not get away with it. Train commuters had noticed the mural would be fine through the evening commute, but would be marked up by the morning commute. So the business owner and a buddy camped out overnight, spotted two older adults in the very act, and called police, who made the arrest.
There have been other upsets, so there's going to be a community march and vigil tomorrow afternoon from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., starting at the main library and ending at the WW1 memorial. I have tickets for a show with an 8:00 o'clock curtain, but I'll go for a while. It's important. To be continued....