Passed out depressed at 4:30 GMT, woke up depressed at 9:30 GMT. Here is how I sum it up:
- Damn you, Florida, for turning red at the last minute and cronyism with your electoral system,
- Damn you, Ohio, for your insignificant state holding the balance of power for the entire world in your hands,
- Damn you, Nader, for stealing enough votes to again having made the difference in a few states,
- Damn you Democrats for screwing this up for the rest of us,
- And finally, damn you, America, for supporting a man who lied to the country to send your citzenry to its death in war and not holding him accountable for it. You’ve impeached a man that’s lied about his sex life, but you let slide a war criminal.
This blog post sums my feelings up now. Perhaps I’ll just stay in Europe and not return.
It’s 2:40AM in London and I’m watching Sky News’ round the clock coverage of the election and I hate waiting. It’s looking like Florida is shifting back to Bush (but I’m guessing we won’t know for a while since the absentee ballots) and half the states that are important are too close to call. It’s a bit amusing, they have two Brit’s covering with an American “expert analyst” and there is a US flag flying in the background and they’re covering it from Washington. I wonder how much later I can really stay up to keep watching this.
Recap on the day in London. Had some spare time in the morning and saw the Raphael Exhibit at the National Gallery. Went in to the office and had some very productive meetings, then called in to another bunch of meetings. Tomorrow will be much of the same with my mornings being a bit free, so I may spend some time hitting sights. I went to dinner with Justin’s sister at a Indian place (Veeraswami — very good pani puri) and met up with Brian later in the evening at a hip-hop club. Good musc, some skandalous girls, lots of brotha and sistas with Brit accents. Much fun, back to election night TV.
It’s only 5:10AM EST, and already the first major polling drama has started to unfold: “Federal appeals court ruled early Tuesday morning that the Republican Party could place thousands of people inside polling places to challenge the eligibility of voters, a blow to Democrats who argued those challengers will intimidate minority voters.” and “But it appeared likely that when Ohio polls open, the Republicans would be able to put 3,500 challengers inside polling places around the state. Democrats also planned to send more than 2,000 monitors to the polls, though they said those people would not challenge votes.” If Floriday (where Kerry holds a 2% lead), Ohio and Penn go to Kerry, it’s a lock for Kerry on the White House. If any of those states slip, it’s all Bush or a legal fight. Well, it’ll probably end up in the courts in any case. Good luck and godspeed, John Kerry.
I’m getting email from VPs telling me to vote, saying it’s Microsoft policy that managers support employee’s being flexible with their schedules to get to vote. This is nuts. Who knows if your vote will even count? I should mention, I picked up the local Cinci paper and the thing was blasted with election material.
I’m back in London, at St. Martin’s Lane Hotel. Trip was relatively uneventful. On the flight to Cincinnati, I learned from the gentleman sitting next to me that the airport is actually in Kentucky. Interesting. Upon arriving to the gate for the flight to Gatwick, the gate agent was announcing that the flight was oversold and they were taking volunteers to get bumped. After a bit of haggling and optimizing their suggested route, I ended up with $200 in Delta Dollars, a business class seat to Amsterdam and a flight to Heathrow arriving 2.5 hours later than I’d originally planned for! Business class is awesome. Well, I don’t think awesome quite describes it, it’s more like unbelievable (or perhaps “excellent”, seeing that I’m in London). From the moment you set foot on the plane, it’s like being on an eight hour formal dinner with a concierge. Sleeper seats, personal entertainment units, food every 30 minutes, amenities from L’Occitane en Provence, wine and cocktails, pretty much everything you can imagine. The seats were so nice that I was actually able to sleep on my side. When the flight landed in Amsterdam, the stewardess paged over the plane’s PA system, “Mr. Bansod, an electric cart is waiting for you to reach your flight.” At this point, I’m like, wow, business class is something else. In actuality it turned out that I had 25 minutes to catch my flight to London and they zipped me across der Luchthaven to make it. From the airport to the hotel was old hat as is getting around these parts of London these days. The weather is (expectedly) miserable, overcast and drizzlely. I went by the office and picked up my mobile (my sister sent it from Paris), so I’m fully connected. That’s it for now.