You don't need to watch the news or notice the proliferation of roadside signs to know that Presidential Primary season is upon us; all you have to do is sit next to the phone at my house any evening and fend off calls from pollsters.
They don't want to talk to me. No, the recorded voices that call us twelve or twenty times every evening all want to talk to my son, who works evenings and thus is never there to take the calls. They offer only two options--"Press 1 if you are Stephen" or "Press 2 if you are not Stephen"--when what we really need is something like "Press 3 if you'd like to short-circuit this recording and send it to the Annoying Recordings Circle of Hell, right next to the computer-generated weather voice that insists on pronouncing 'fog' as if it were 'fodge'."
Every four years when politicians suddenly discover deep concern for flyover states they can't keep straight in the interim, when they are shocked to discover that Ohio and Iowa aren't just variant pronunciations of the same name, madness ensues. Our own governor is coming back from the campaign trail to deliver his State of the State speech in quaint, historic Marietta, Ohio, a news item that filled up my Facebook feed yesterday afternoon. One of the announcements featured an unfortunately truncated headline and lede:
Poor Marie--and what kind of joint is he requesting? Get a room, people!
The madness really hit home, though, when Ted Cruz's Superpac, Stand by Truth, produced an attack ad decrying the fact that undocumented immigrants can pay in-state tuition to attend Our Nation's Top Schools (see it here, if you dare). The video they use to illustrate this claim, though, is an aerial view of my own campus, including a nice clear image of the building in which I am sitting right now. It's nice that the Cruz people think we're one of Our Nation's Top Schools, but we're kind of a bad example if you want to talk about in-state tuition, which we do not offer. Everyone pays the same outlandish sum.
What I'd like to do is put that ad on a loop and hook it up with the recorded voice that keeps calling every evening. Anything to get the pollsters off my back!