...except for me and my monkey! "Everything we see hides another thing. We always want to see what is hidden by what we see." -Rene Magritte

Friday, October 01, 2004

Happiness

Yesterday was great. Here's why:

1. Tabling for College Democrats with Matt during lunch. Basically, we just sat outside the Bon with all the Kerry paraphernalia (pins, stickers, lawn signs, info sheets, junk like that) spread around and waited for people to come to us. We gave out a lot of stuff, sold several pins and lawn signs, and registered at least half a dozen people to vote. Whee! Registering people is so satisfying and gratifying. It's very concrete and makes me feel as though I'm really doing something important for the campaign. (Matt is the kid who visited last spring and stayed with Chris and Ryan--remember? We went to the Jane Brown lecture then came back to the room and ordered pizza; everyone hung out for awhile chatting and Matt and I got into a spirited discussion about religion and The Onion, my two favorite subjects.)

(Edit: when I first posted this this afternoon, I accidentally wrote that we were selling "spins," instead of "pins." Freudian slip? You decide! At least I didn't write that we were selling "sins.")

2. My Modern Mexico class was a little boring, so I'll skip that, but afterwards Becky and I chatted for a few minutes; I think we're both putting out the friendship feelers, so to speak. I might watch a movie with her and her friends on Saturday, since I'm not going to homecoming. We walked over to the Overseas Office so I could pick up my Chile application. Unfortunately the office was closed, so I just picked up a general information brochure, which brings me to point 3...

3. As I was reading the brochure, I got so excited for Chile next fall. The current bunch of people studying there left in mid-July and won't be back until mid-December--that's five solid months, and I fully intend to travel around South American after the program officially ends and then fly back to Portland just a week before school starts in mid-January. Seriously, I am so looking forward to it, especially after seeing the trailer for The Motorcycle Diaries. It's not that I expect to be the next Che Guevara or that I have any interest in riding a motorcycle, but the idea of traveling around such a beautiful continent...love! I only worry that it might not be safe for me to travel alone as a young American woman. Perhaps I'll tell everyone that I'm canadiense.

4. At dinner, I mentioned that DeAnn had lent me the Freaks and Geeks DVDS, and Amy immediately responded, "I love Freaks and Geeks!" We're going to have a mini-marathon within the next two weeks, I hope; I bet if I publicize it in Stewart we can get a good crowd. (That's not intended as an insult to any Stewart denizens. I just think that they're most likely to have seen the show.)

5. The debate! I thought Kerry did a great job and that Bush did a very poor job. This connects with my first point, actually; as most of you know, Sarah and I founded a College Democrats chapter and are collaborating with Students Against Bush and LC 4 Kerry in bringing political events to campus, showing a documentary series, registering voters, etc. We reserved Council Chambers for the debates last night, but weren't expecting too many people to show.

The place was packed. How many people fit in Council Chambers? 300? 500? People were sitting in the aisles and standing in the entranceway. It was awesome. Snarky comments abounded.

The rest of they day's happiness stemmed from the debates and all things political: The Daily Show, talking afterwards with Amy and Clay, then with Alex for about an hour and a half. I also called my family; they all though that Kerry clearly won. My dad and brother are actually doing door-to-door canvassing for the campaign. If you know my dad, you know how big of a deal that is: he's very shy. When I expressed my surprise that he would do such a thing, he kind of shrugged and said, "Well, I've got to do whatever I can do." I'm so proud of him.

Overall, it was just a good day. I actually felt genuinely optimistic about the election for the first time in awhile; to paraphrase my hero Václav Havel, the more I think about it, the more I realize that the most important thing is to not give up hope and faith in life itself, nor in humanity.