Saturday, November 1st, 2008, 6:28 pm
Today I participated in the ultimate expression of American democracy–the Kiwanis Club pancake breakfast. Come on, voting’s fine and all, but you don’t get a side order of sausage when you vote. Plus only like 13% of Americans actually bother to vote. “Ooh, looks a bit cloudy, think I’ll try again in 2012”. Savages.
Based on the turnout at this morning’s gathering the polls might be more crowded than usual this year. Pretty much a packed house, and with all due respect I don’t think it was because of the presence of Jason Altmire, my Congressperson. It looks like we’ll be sending Jason back to Washington and as I shook his hand I missed an opportunity to lobby him about the UIGEA. How often am I gonna have the chance to have a one-on-one chat with a member of the House of Representatives? Without security trying to break the door down?
Then again, how often am I gonna have the chance to eat some pancakes? I don’t come from pancake people–when Mom breaks out the griddle that means French toast is on the way. And, man, do I love me some French toast. When Mom tells me to come over for breakfast I bring my own loaf. On the few occasions I’ve made it myself it hasn’t been as good, I really need to interrogate her and get all the secrets. Occasionally she’d make pancakes (when we were bad, I guess) and they were OK. I guess. When I first started dating my ex-wife we woke early one morn and I was intrigued when she broke out…a waffle iron. With little fanfare she poured ingredients into a mixing bowl and started ladleing batter onto the sizzling plates. And as I scarfed down the crispy-on-the-outside, fluffy-on-the-inside bricks I thought to myself, “I must make this woman my wafflefrau!!” When I say that one of the things I miss most about married life was waking up Sunday mornings to find her in the kitchen getting down the box of Jiffy, I’m not selling things short. Waffles are good.
So it’s hard for pancakes to muscle their way past French toast and waffles onto my breakfast table. And we haven’t even raised the subject of bacon and eggs. This morning’s event was held at my old junior high school (well, the building itself was brand new) and we were served by a platoon of eager freshpersons who ferried shots of orange juice and paper plates laden with scrambled eggs, sausage, and two hefty pancakes. I quickly disposed of the sausage and eggs (maple syrup+eggs=gross) and enjoyed those pancakes to the fullest.
While I was chowing down Melissa Hart, who lost her seat to Altmire two years ago and is running again this year, showed up and started making the rounds. Last year the two candidates were both in the room at the same time and didn’t speak to each other. Didn’t even make eye contact with each other. At one point the two were standing practically back-to-back and they were so intent on ignoring the other that it might’ve been less confrontational if they’d had a shouting match.
But their consitutients were far more laid back, both two years ago and today. Hard to be hyperpartisan while pouring maple syrup on a grilled cake. I made perhaps the most powerful political statement of the morning by wearing my Obama T-shirt. I’ll be glad when Tuesday rolls around and the campaign finally, finally comes to an end. Even if that means my pancake window of opportunity closes for another year.
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