Early voting: Day one

Editor's Note: Today, as you may have heard, is the first day of early voting here in Central Florida. And because we like to torture our interns, we dispatched Adriana Ruiz to walk down to the downtown library, stand in line forever, cast her ballot, pick us up some food and then come back and write about it. Here's what we got from Miss Ruiz:

Oh the joys of early voting! The eager little faces of those first-time voters; the overwhelming feeling that youâ??re changing the world; oh, and the ridiculously long and dreadful two-hour line with complete strangers who might not share your political views. Two words: fun and fun.

If youâ??re looking to start the process a little early, just make sure youâ??re prepared. I wasnâ??t when I showed up at the downtown library voting precinct this afternoon, never expecting that the entire freaking city would turn-out, and that the line would wrap around the inside of the building. Considerâ??very stronglyâ?? bringing some snacks and your iPod unless youâ??re up for a two-hour conversation with some weird guy in front of you.

It probably didnâ??t help that there were only two election officials verifying personal information for a line of about 100 people, or that the computers kept having problems, or that one of the printers was broken for about an hour. But they swore they had everything under control. (That's sounds eerily like the Weekly office.)

Waiting aside, I was impressed to see such a successful first day voter turn-out, and a nice mix of people; old, young, black, white, and I may have been the only Hispanic there, but that's fine - we always wait for the last possible minute. Although I saw a shitload of T-shirted Obama supporters, I canâ??t say I saw anyone with a McCain shirt on.

If this is a sneak peek at whatâ??s to come on election day, you might want to gear up to vote early, now through November 1st, unless youâ??re looking forward to a four-hour voter mosh-pit on Election Day. An election official told me the lines had been long since they opened at 10 am, and he was expecting them to stay that way till 6 pm when they stop taking voters. So seriouslyâ??roll out of bed early and get that shit done.


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