How to deal with nut cases

Sal went to electoral procedure class yesterday in town so that she can ‘work’ the coming election.  I was busy buying hardware and second hand doors.  After shopping, I went to get her.  While I was waiting the women at the front desk were receiving the public and the public were voting.  Not revolting as usual but, in this case, voting.

“Is this some kind of advance poll?” I asked.

“Yes.  There are only two of these advanced voting stations in the province.  The other is in Port McNeil.  BC is the only province that has advanced-advance polls.  They are because so many men are going North and staying in camps, this gives them a chance to vote.” 

I noted that the people I had seen so far vote were all very elderly, hardly the types to go north to work in camps.  “Well, that’s because the senior’s centre is just around the corner and they like to have a little outing.”

“Am I allowed to vote, too?  I am a senior.  I like outings.

“Of course, dear.  Show me the right ID and you can vote, too”.  Her voice had changed so as to accommodate my newly recognized senior senile status.  And she gave me a fake smile as a bonus.

The reason I chose to vote early is because Sal is going to be an electoral officer and, in anticipation of that I had asked her, “When you are behind the desk and I show up, surely you are not going to ask for my ID.  You’ll just give me the ballot, right?”

“No way.  You have to show me the proper ID or you don’t get to vote!”

“But, but, but Sal!!  We’ve been together for forty four years.  You know me.  You do not have to see my ID.  You know who I am!  What the hell!?”

“Sorry.  Rules are rules.  No ID, no ballot.  Don’t try to cause trouble, now.”  

“OK.  That’s it!  That is now the craziest thing you have ever said and, believe me, there are a lot of them from which to choose.  But this takes the cake!  Imagine demanding ID from your own husband!  I am going to show up without ID.  I promise.  And then you’ll see trouble!”

After that conversation, Sal had sneaked my ID into her purse so that she could pull it out on the 14th when I showed up without any.  She was going to provide me with ID whether I wanted it or not.

I share this with you all because I love Sal and we are pretty close.  But she is as mad a hatter and you have to know that.  You know, in case I snap one day?  I may need character references.  GOOD character references.  I have plenty of the other kind already.

But I knew that she had secreted my ID away.  I knew she was going to go all bureaucratic on me when I showed up without ID.  She was prepared for me and my idiosyncratic ways.  I knew that I was gonna get processed properly.  And it rankled me.  GAWD!  Being married for almost half a century should count for something, don’t you think?  Shouldn’t I get a pass on the ID check?  From my own wife!?

So, when the chance came to by-pass that little fiasco-in-the-making, I took it.  I voted in the advance-advance poll while she was learning how to vet out potential impostors such as me.

Yes, I know that I had to show the smiling woman at the desk my ID.  Don’t bug me!

And you thought our relationship was simple.

8 thoughts on “How to deal with nut cases

  1. Some fires burn with more intensity.

    Last time I voted I have to show photo Id to a long time acquaintance of 25 years.

    Had my driver’s license renewed and was given a special photo that will work with facial recognition software. Pogo said, “We have met the enemy and he is us.”


  2. But would we recognize the enemy if they didn’t show ID?

    I must admit, I really am intolerant of unnecessary procedure, rules and red tape. I understand the need for those things when there is a need but when there isn’t a demonstrable need, then why go through all that nonsense? To me, it is all officious petty tyranny inflicted by little paper bullies.

    If I was a meter reader, I could easily give a ticket for over-parking but, if I saw the person running to their car, I wouldn’t. Why would I? The point is to ‘move ’em along’ not make their lives miserable.

    “No, Dave, the real reason is to generate revenues for the city.” Maybe. But I would prefer to tax those who are true offenders, not someone just 30 seconds late. Anyway, my point is: we are all in this together. And we should look out for each other. NOT look out for the institutions. The institutions can look after themselves. The rest of us should strive for freedom and humanity!



  3. Recently you expressed a vague feeling of ennui. I get it too but I think of it as fear mongering. The latest is printers that will print guns that will be undetectable. ‘Plastic guns will be the premise for a police state’. Do not know who is spreading the rumour of the undetectable weapon proving the need for more security but it is disquieting for the huddled masses ruled by fear.


    • Ennui? Me?! Not ennui so much as discontent, frustration and expectation of the END OF DAYS! But the part of ennui that is about listlessness, fatalism, boredom and resignation is missing in me. I intend to resist. I will not go gently. Well, maybe I will but I will rant and rave at the very least. I’ll go out with a roar! OK, a loud and persistent whimper. THAT I can promise.


  4. The Milgram experiments showed how normally mild people will turn vicious and cruel to others if they think they are being obedient to authority. “Just Following Orders.” Sound familiar?


    • Yes, it does sound familiar. I wonder why their freshly minted ‘orders’ have priority over their own humanity? Hmmm………couldn’t we just give them ‘orders’ to be reasonable and considerate to each other?


  5. It appears that not all people maintain their innate goodness. Some are turned, shaped, twisted and contorted out of their humanity into caricatures of civility. “Couldn’t we just give them ‘orders’ to be reasonable and considerate to each other?” We could but would that not fly in the face of what history has demonstrated about dealing with such people?


    • Yeah. I agree. I was just being a bit tongue-in-cheek. Some people are bad, bad to the bone. But, in my experience people are more good as a rule than are the actual rule-keepers and the ‘enforcers’, Seems to me that 98% of the people are pretty good most of the time and yet 20% of the rule-enforcers are petty tyrants all the time. Could just be me, I suppose, and my antipathy towards all authority figures (I don’t even like the being staged in ferry line-ups). I tend to balk at rigidity in all its forms. One could almost accuse me of being rigid about it.


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