Thursday, October 23, 2008

My Little Problem

On Thursday I admitted to myself that I had become addicted to politics, that I had a real problem and that it was time to quit this stuff. When you find yourself posting sappy comments about Barack Obama to your blog well after your children have gone to bed, and then dream about the upcoming election most of the night, only to stop for a brief period to toss and turn awake worrying about its outcome, it's time to take a good hard look at your behavior.

So how has my first day on the wagon gone? Well, around 10:30 in the morning I told myself that sitting down for a few minutes while waiting for the sheets to wrinkle release in the dryer, and watching a little of last night's episode of The Daily Show couldn't hurt. After all, I needed one last hit just to get myself through this. When the show was finished, I felt like a dirty cheater.

After that I was careful to steer clear of the people and places that I know would make me want to start thinking about the presidential race again. I knew better than to navigate to the Huffington Post, the sight of many hours of elated reading about Sarah Palin's latest gaff, or John McCain's most recent use of the "c" word. I also stayed well away from where I knew I couldn't possibly resist the multi-colored electoral college map or the siren song of its sister, the map of the latest poll numbers.

Thinking it was a safe place to go, I checked my email while last night's crud soaked off the frying pan. What I found there led me to temptation though. It was a summary of the most recent blog posts at Huffington Post, and before I knew it I was forwarding a link to CC Goldwater's blog post about how McCain has lost our vote.

Enough, I told myself. Time to get out of this house and away from my computer. I leashed up the dogs and set out for a walk, determined to enjoy the fall sunshine and clear my head of thoughts about the Powell Bounce, or Palin's $150,000 makeover. It all went well until I started seeing all of the Yes on 8 signs that have popped up over the last week in my neighborhood like mushrooms in a cow patty. Instead of listening to the crunch of the fallen leaves under my feet and enjoying all of the Halloween decorations, I caught myself with my finger poised above my neighbor's doorbell, about to ask her where I could get myself a No on 8 sign like hers.

I've decided to give myself a break. Like all addictions, this one won't be beaten in a day. Instead I'll try to limit myself to one visit a day to Huffington Post, and a quick check once a week to see how the polls look at CNN. I'm swearing off Jon Stewart all together though. At least I will after November 4th. And this time I mean it.


Joanna said...

Swear off Jon Stewart - wow girl, that's hard core. I have to admit my own addiction (ha ha - AA for political junkies!) but while watching Real Time with Bill Maher last night (recorded on the DVR, so not sure which week's episode) one of his panelist was Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)a "democratic socialist" and brought up the good point that we can't stop caring after the election is over - our democracy requires us to be invloved. And now that I have the bug......will I ever have a good night's rest or will I now worry over the world and America's problems forever?!?!

Anonymous said...

I get up every morning and swear to myself I won't obsess about the polls or the predictions. By 10AM I'm glued to my computer or the TV hunting for signs of progress by the Obama campaign. I come from a country where we don't get too excited by elections or politics in general,BUT no matter how hard I try I can't shake the feeling that the future of this country and it's people, this USA, is riding on the outcome of this election. By the way, I've never suffered from paranoia.

I For One..... said...

Of course I kid about swearing off Jon Stewart. Once a Daily Show fan, always a Daily Show fan. I agree with Bernie Sanders though. Part of me thinks, gosh, what the hell did we all spend our time caring about before this election came along, and will we continue to be this caught up in politics? I hope so. I think it's high time we quit handing the reigns over to our elected officials and busying our brain cells with American Idol and who Paris Hilton is canoodling with. The Bush administration got away with a heck of a lot because we the people were too fat and happy to care.