I grew up in a great little neighborhood in a sweet little town in Central NJ. On my block alone there were four other families with girls my age. We were free to roam back in those days, every afternoon after school and all day Saturday.
We’d ride our bikes or roller skate. We’d play Kick the Can or spook each other at dusk with a game of Walk Around the House. In the winter we built snow forts or tried to roll the world’s largest snowball. On rainy days we favored Detective Agency. Sometimes we even succumbed to Barbies.
But no game stands out clearer for me than the one we played every day: Vote.
See, the girls three doors down had this huge rolling chalkboard in their bedroom and one day when we were fighting over what to play someone said, “Why don’t we vote on it?”
Sounded good. Fun even. The biggest kids who could write took turns scribing the choices we all called out and recording our votes. But the best part was being in the citizenry and having a chance to call out what I wanted to play.
Sure I didn’t always get what I wanted. There were partisan groups that formed and it would seem like weeks and weeks of Charlie’s Angels when I wanted Little House, or roller skates when I wanted bikes.
And yes, some days playing Vote grew itself into such an intensive, all consuming experience that we were being called home for dinner before we’d had a chance to actually play the games we were voting on.
In today’s election, I’m not really seeing many of my play choices on the chalkboard and I’m worn out from the excessive campaigns of the big kids. But it still feels natural to show up. A choice for the lesser of two evils may still be a choice for evil, but I’ll take a choice over no choice any day.
So whatever Kick the Can jail you’re finding yourself in today, listen up: “All-y all-y in come free!”
© Jennifer S. and harvestliberty.net, 2012.