Sunday, May 1, 2011


The birds are twittering in fine spring rain, the green is greening everywhere, and tomorrow we have the election, with its wildly lively energy (for once!) to look forward to and to survive.

I'll be with friends who have a TV (this house is without TV now), with our predictions on numbers of seats each party will win all tidily written down so we can compare then to the incoming results.

I was just sent a list of swing ridings, by a friend in BC, compiled by Catch 22 Harper; a group that is guiding people in their necessarily strategic voting (necessary if the Conservatives are to be held back). It's amazing to see the list of ridings where Liberal is the strategic vote, and those where NDP is; and it speaks to the likelihood of split votes and Harper's chance of sliding up the middle. It's so frustrating to be stuck with this first-past-the-post system when we have more than two parties and also have large regional fracturing of politics.

At least we have elections, elections that are reasonably clean and fair, though with the usual empty posturing and last-minute smearing. As we are reminded by events in the last three months in North Africa and West ASia, many people are without the right to express an opinion, let alone to vote, and many have lost their lives doing battle for those rights. So, the old rule "remember to be thankful for what we have" still holds, even when I feel like whining!

Sorry to rant and ramble... especially dreary for those of you who have no stake or interest in Canadian politics.

Meantime Labour and the Labour movement and workers' rights should be on our minds on this political day of remembrance. But all I can think about is the results coming in tomorrow night.

I bicycled to Wychwood Market yesterday, a ride up a steep hill in bright sunshine. Apart from looking around at all there was for sale, including some beautiful Jerusalem artichokes, and sweet potatoes, etc, I also hung out with Ed at his Evelyn's Crackers stall. People came by to taste the amazing crackers and shortbreads, handmade from local organic grains, and to chat.

One guy told me about his addiction to the Cheese Crackers, but then was buying two other kinds instead. It was like he was rationing himself. I remonstrated with him a little, reminding him that he might need to indulge himself while watching the election results Monday night. "Oh, he said, joking, I have a bottle of gin for that!" We laughed, but it did remind me of some of those deeply disappointing election nights when my democratic impulses and reflexes were tested and all I wanted to do was smash something or weep or ...

Here's hoping tomorrow is NOT like that!

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