By Eliska Counce, TSB Columnist
Holy cow with the American presidential election. Have you had it yet? With the media vitriol? With your in-laws’ Facebook posts? With the punditry and talking heads and the spin, spin, spin? I’m like Scarlett O’Hara over here: War, war, war! I’m just so tired of talking about this old war! I’d much rather eat barbeque. But alas, with the endless candidate debates and campaign appearances of Obama/Biden and Romney/Ryan, there just seems to be no way around listening to talk about the 2012 presidential election. Depression? Anxiety? Trouble sleeping? Of course! It’s election season.
Now, don’t get me wrong! I am an involved citizen and an impassioned voter. I have voted in every presidential election since …well, let’s just say since I was 18 and keep my illusion of youth. I thoroughly believe in an educated citizenry. It is our most important right as Americans, and you must vote. Particularly if you’re a woman. And it’s best if you know a little bit about the millionaire for whom you’re about to cast that vote.
So therein lies the rub. I’ve got to stay informed, but I’d also like to keep from having a cardiac event while waiting for November 7 to be here. I’ve got to stave off them election season blues and the stress associated with the associated media surrounding it. Thusly: I bring you some time-worn suggestions for staying mellow for the last month of this excruciating campaign season that are working for me thus far:
Process your feelings. I call this cursing at the television. I also have a nice large car sponge upon which I have written words like “LYING LIAR” and “SHUT THE HELL UP” and “EAT A POO SANDWICH.” It doesn’t hurt my TV screen at all when I fling it at commercials funded by Super PACs. It is perfectly fine to shout at your television in any language you prefer as long as there are no small children lurking about to scar. I frequently debate Wolf Blitzer myself. What can that man know? He calls that thing on his face a beard.
Soothe yourself. Do a guided imagery exercise. It’s Christmas. There’s a log blazing in the fireplace. Santa is due and this Band-Aid of an election has already been ripped off. I buy myself a pair of shoes for every debate my candidate muffs. My presidential motto: A handbag for every gaffe! Or perhaps some good old fashioned comfort food to ease the pain and give the belly a hug. Macaroni and cheese says, “It’s alright, honey. I’m here for you even when the politicians break your heart.” I suggest Ben and Jerry’s and a nice puppy, kitty, or baby video from the internet. The combination is like being back in the womb. Related:
The debate drinking game! Drink if Obama blames Bush, references the 47% or Bin Laden, or says “millionaires” or “billionaires.” Drink if Mitt touts his plan to add 15 million jobs in four years or says “entrepreneur,” “small business,” or “private sector.” Drink if either of them refers to each other in the third person, compliments the other man’s wife, or refuses to answer a moderator’s question. A candidate goes overtime? TAKE A SHOT! And if anyone utters the word “freedom”? Finish that drink.
The good old fashioned bitch session. Gather your like-minded people to you to complain and complain and complain and complain and complain. Watch Bob Roberts or Red Dawn together. Participate in a little group think. It’s good to be agreed with. Twitter is a great place to cherry-pick a support team that’s so like-minded, you’ll think them Borg. It’s the social media version of sticking your fingers in your ears and screaming LA LA LA! There’s a time an a place for bipartisan, good-natured debate. But then there’s the times I want to talk about what a moron that other guy is and be agreed with.
So here’s to survival of the fittest over the next four weeks as we go careening towards Election Day. Let’s be kind to one another in these last days. Tension is high. We’ve all made up our minds. We’re just waiting to pull the trigger. Let’s not get trigger-happy with one another in the meanwhile, shall we? Because in the end and on election day, I’m thinking we’re probably just getting a choice between that poo sandwich on rye or on pumpernickel no matter what we order anyway.