...99 bottles of beer, you take one down, you pass it around…98 bottles of beer on the wall. (there really is no substitute for the version sung with your cousins LOUDLY from the back seat and the way back seat on a long road trip in a station wagon, windows down, in the 1970’s)
Party like it’s 1999. I was dreamin’ when I wrote this
Forgive me if it goes astray
But when I woke up this mornin’
Could’ve sworn it was judgment day The sky was all purple
There were people runnin’ everywhere
Tryin’ to run from the destruction
You know I didn’t even care Say say
Two-thousand-zero-zero party over
Oops out of time
So tonight I’m gonna party like it’s 1999
99 Luftballoons. You and I in a little toy shop
Buy a bag of balloons with the money we’ve got
Set them free at the break of dawn
‘Til one by one they were gone
Back at base bugs in the software
Flash the message “something’s out there!”
Floating in the summer sky
Ninety-nine red balloons go by
What’s going on here? Oh, right. Yes, we’re down to double digits now!
You are running out of time to REGISTER to vote. To VERIFY you are REGISTERED to vote. To VERIFY your POLLING LOCATION HASN’T CHANGED since the last time you voted (It happens. A lot. Especially if you haven’t voted recently! If you didn’t vote since the last time you could vote for Obama in 2012, for example, your polling place may have moved from a tiny elementary school, to a lovely and airy new college campus building. AND during the pandemic, the powers that be have used COVID-19 as an excuse to close many locations)
MAKE sure you have as much valid identification as you can possibly scrounge up. THIS Election Day is NOT the time to argue that you should or shouldn’t have to show X, or Y, or Z form of ID.
That IS THE GOAL. To DENY you the opportunity to cast your vote. DO NOT THROW AWAY YOUR SHOT. Bring more than you need. Read up on what might be acceptable, and gather it.
You are running out of time TO REQUEST an ABSENTEE BALLOT. To MAKE A VOTING PLAN. Childcare, transportation, the expectation that IF you are planning to vote IN PERSON, that you could be there a LONG TIME. You can NOT plan to squeeze voting in between a meeting and a hair appointment.
(also, here… do you know WHAT signature they “compare” to verify your ABSENTEE ballot is acceptable?? Here in VA, it’s the one on your Drivers License…. and I am here to tell you, I don’t really write my signature exactly that way anymore. So, I WILL be looking carefully at my drivers license to make sure I am ok)
My voting location is in a HBCU (Historically Black College or University). I have registered for ABSENTEE, but if for some reason, I have to vote in person, BECAUSE I vote in a MINORITY DISTRICT I EXPECT there to be lines and confusion and other forms of voter suppression. I HAVE REQUESTED TUESDAY NOVEMBER 3, 2020 as a DAY OFF. If my ballot arrives as I hope, I will be able to just have a day off.
If not, well, you know where you will find me.
If you don’t feel that the USPS is a safe way to MAIL your vote, because maybe the Post Office will bag it up and leave it in a janitors closet until after the postmark is too late??— You can drop it off in PERSON… I can’t tell you WHERE. Come on. You are an adult reading this on the internet. Do some research. Contact YOUR Election commision.
One other really important bit. You ARE part of the problem if you vote THIRD PARTY this time. You dilute the actual vote totals when you protest vote. Vote for your uncle’s poodle in the primary, but in THIS election, the General Election of 2020, it’s not hyperbole to say the future of the COUNTRY as a DEMOCRACY is at stake.
Not having voted for either Trump or Biden will be small solace to you when you find your freedoms disappearing.
THIS ARTICLE ON VOTING is very detailed, long and important. Voting is NOT something you should think about Monday night, November 2nd.
(You are welcome for the earworms. Which one stuck with you all day??)
Yesterday, we visited the Lee Statue which has, for the past three weeks, been the site of protest, and yes, graffiti. It was quite moving. As I walked around it, with the memory of all the news reports over these last weeks and months and years, I realized that this was a symbol of grief unspoken (or at least, unheard) for too long.
The black community has tried to tell us there is something wrong with our world. Colin Kaepernick tried to do it quietly, respectfully. (I’m Catholic, you spend a good bit of time in church, on your knees. Kneeling is respectful. You kneel to propose, you kneel before a king or queen). But, we told him, NO! You can protest, but not THAT way, either.
So, spray paint it is. Loud, boisterous and sometimes vulgar. There was, first, the anger. Those first few days of protest got the raw emotions out around the country. What are the five stages of grief? It has morphed, now, here, into a place of memorial, and peace, fellowship — free water for anyone who needs it, under a tent, People to discuss issues with at hand, available informally like docents in museums– JUST START TALKING to someone you see, and you can’t help but learn something–and activism (Register to VOTE at one tent while you are here).
Surrounding the statue, every 10 feet or so encircling the base are laminated sheets of paper, with the stories of loss. There are the names we all know– Trayvon, Amadalu, and so many other voices that were silenced. We went on a Thursday afternoon. I was thrilled to see such a variety of ages and colors and physical wellness in those who were visiting. There were so many young people, using this as a backdrop for casual portraits, there was a young black man standing halfway up the pedestal, reading poetry he wrote while a friend recorded him.
It was supposed to feel so very sad; to be forced to see all the evidence of death, of police brutality. But it really felt so very positive to have the mom with her two little blond girls, going quietly from photo to photo, reading and learning — saying their names. We have a long way to go, but removing statues of people who fought against this country and lost would be a great first start.
https://www.rteest42.com/StatebyStateTravelog/Virginia-is-for-Lovers/Lee-Statue-BLM-/ See my entire gallery.