Sunday, August 22, 2010

Of queues and self-importance

The federal election inconveniently coinciding with a long-awaited weekend away, Prudence had to cast an absentee vote.

At the local rec centre, lots of other people had been caught by the same coincidence, and the absentee voter queue was long and moved agonisingly slowly.

At last it was Prudence's turn, and, hoping to speed the process, she announced her electorate and surname.

"Hmph," said the temporary electoral official (sporting a faded blue rinse), "write down your address and we'll see".

Naturally, Prudence was right, but there was no apology forthcoming.

And we know how Prudence feels about this sort of petty officiousness.

1 comment:

  1. As a casual WAEC worker on Absent Vote desk, I've got to say that it's not a matter of petty officiousness. The electoral division must be identified by a specific code, which changes according to suburb and occasionally even street. Without the correct code, the vote may go to the wrong division and be delayed or invalidated.

    She was a bit of an ass about it, but we're very specifically instructed not to take the punters' word for it. Especially as they changed several electoral boundaries recently, meaning that many people were surprised to discover that they were not in the division they'd occupied for the 2007 election.