This Saturday, M and I went and fulfilled our civic duty by voting in the New Westminster municipal election.
There is something about voting that just feels good.
For me, it’s a mixture of excitement, appreciation, pride, nerves, and just a pinch of je ne sais quoi – it’s a time to ponder the unknown, the possible, perhaps even the regrettable, but any way you slice it, it’s an opportunity for a fresh start.
I also can’t help but wonder what it would be like to be one of those names on that ballot. I mull over what it would be like to put my job security on the line, nay into the hands of others, having to convince complete strangers that I would be the darn best individual to represent both them and their interests.
That seems pretty scary, pretty bold, pretty cocky and a HECK of a lot of work.
After we cast our ballots, we went for a long walk down to the quay, checking out the different artisanal shops that have opened up in the market. For a mid-winter afternoon, the weather was just about as exquisite as it could get.
As we were walking, I got to thinking about all the different “things” I have wanted to be. To put it mildly, there have been many. Since, well, since I was aware that one day I was going to have to be “something,” so it would probably be a good idea to think about what it was I wanted.
Below is a list of just a few of the things “things” I have contemplated “being” during my relatively short time here on this great big ball of blue and green, formally known planet oiyth (in Bugs Bunny speak, if you will).
1. Age 4. Veterinarian. This didn’t last for very long. I went to a Charlotte Diamond concert with my kindergarten class and Charlotte, that old battle-axe, asked kids in the audience to volunteer what they wanted to be when they grew up. Being the total team player that I was, I raised my hand, ready to let everyone know just how committed I was to our fury little four-legged friends. But when she called on me, I suddenly got super nervous and had a hard time choking out “veterinarian” so I just yelled out “vet” instead. Well, what with the concert taking place in a tent that could accommodate upwards of 500 people, the acoustics were a little lacking. C.D. misheard what I said and proceeded to make fun of me in front of the entire gosh darn group.
“A CAT!?” she laughed. “Young lady! You can’t be a cat when you grow up! AHAHAHAHA…” (And of course the entire tent well followed suit.)
Boy did that ever chap my ass. I seriously wanted to jump up and yell “Hey Charlie! NO SHIT I can’t be a cat! What do you take me for? Some kind of Bolshevik cretin!? THANKS TIPS.” (Only, in you know – 4-year old speak.)
It was that moment right there that killed that aspiration.
I should have just said “Je suis un pizza” and called it a life.
2. Age 8. Model/Singer. I discovered my sister’s YM magazine. All the girls in it were stunning and looked as though they were having the BEST. TIME. EVER. I practiced signing songs from Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat on my neighbors trampoline when they weren’t at home. One day their teenage son snuck up on me and scared the ever living daylights out of me. My mortification knew no bounds and I immediately burst into tears. As he tried to calm me down, I couldn’t help but notice that he kind of looked like that guy in the “some people say I eat too many chocolate bars” acne cream commercial.
To this day that advertisement both makes me laugh and breaks my heart.
That incident on the trampoline, combined with my rapidly developing, all consuming love for sports made for a quick end to my YM dreams.
I still know all the words to Go-Go-Go-Joseph though.
3. Age 14. Sports Medicine Doctor. This dream had a long shelf life until the first time I sustained a serious injury playing badminton and I found out that bodies = disgusting.
4. Age 18. English Professor. Growing up I wasn’t exposed to much literature outside of the classical English canon. I loved all of Austen, Montgomery, Alcott and Bronte; read Dickens and Homer and Wilde and Elliot and Stoker and Shelley and Coleridge and, well, pick up any English lit. anthology and I’ve read it and loved it. And not knowing anything else, I thought that I would enter university and continue along that path.
That was until halfway through first year when I picked up Dostoevsky’s “Devils” and had my mind blown so hard that, eight years later, I’m still picking up the pieces.
English professor? No siree Bob. I have every genre, time period and country to explore – if I tried to pick just one I would probably end up pulling a Raskolnikov, and I have no intention of introducing an Inspector Porfiry to the already packed group of kooky characters that populate my life.
5. Age 20+. Too many to count! Or simply just: ? The possibilities are endless! Although bearing witness to just how amazing my kitty-cat’s life is makes me think this whole thing just might have come full circle. I would be lying if I said I have never fantasized about switching places with her because, simply put, her life is ridiculously awesome. Plus look how pretty she is:
I don’t know about singer, but she could definitely, most definitely be a model.
Go, go, go go!