Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Results of my Election Day Profile - my club is a Polling Place!

My neighborhood club where I teach 2 mornings a week at 6 am is actually part of our HOA (Homeowner's Association). It's .25 miles from my house. As the weather gets colder, we get a big influx of riders coming back indoors, as well as people renting here for the ski season (most of the local rentals include the club membership in their rent, since their HOA dues pay for it anyway). 

So this morning I had quite a few new faces in my class.  Hmmmm, I thought. I have my election day ride planned - gotta make sure I don't offend anyone!  I knew that I'd  be ok with my planned ride with my regular students but wasn't sure how to approach it with the newcomers. The only thing I did differently was to make a few less comments as we rode (see my previous post for my profile and playlist) and made sure to avoid anything partisan, except to express my desire for change, the significance of an African-American coming this far and running for President of the United States (during the Martin Luther King speech in the Spiritual High song), and that I hope everyone would get out and vote.

It went great! I had more people singing to my songs than usual (it's kind of hard to sing to electronic or world music, my normal fare), and several fun comments when certain songs came on. One woman grabbed my arm as she walked out and said, "Thank you Jennifer. Thanks for doing that, it was great!"

Then as I walked out of class, I saw the long line of people on the stairs, waiting to vote - I'm talking, 15 feet from my Spin room! Yes, my club is a polling place for the local community! Even though I live so close, I'm actually in another precinct, so I didn't think of it (the HUGE signs on the front of the club indicating this as a Polling Place for precinct 4 escaped me the past 2 weeks).

All I can say is I'm glad my class wasn't any later - it ended at 7 am and the voting started at 7. You just never know, someone might not have liked the fact that I played (rather loudly) Barack Obama's campaign rally song (or Sarah Palin's), or Martin Luther King's I Have a Dream speech! Not sure if you'd count that as "campaigning" but the law says any signs, buttons, or people endorsing any candidate must be 100 feet from the doors of the polling place. But the only thing they might have heard was "Are you strong enough to be my man" or "Waiting on the world to change."

Later, after I voted, I got my free Starbucks coffee.  We have two guys who open the club a few mornings a week who also work at the local Starbucks, so they know me quite well when I come in for my usual Americano.  Today Stan asked me how my Election Day ride went this morning. It's fun to live in a small enough town that people at the coffee shop know about your Spin classes!

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