Average Jane

Breaking News: The Kennedys Endorse Average Jane!

Political endorsements have always baffled me. Half the time I say, “Wow! That’s nice. Schmucky politician #1 is now throwing his schmuckiness behind Schmucky politician #2.” The other half the time I think, “I wonder what damage control Schmucky politician #2 is going to have to do now that Schmucky politician #1 is endorsing him (or her. I get it.).”

But then again, I typically don’t need persuading when it comes to my vote.

This cycle has been different. I’ve never been an “undecided,” until now. It’s funny… I feel like more of a statistic in the undecided column than I did when I stood strong and decidedly behind Al Gore.

The conversation this election cycle always goes as follows: “So, who are you gonna vote for? Obama?” Nah. “Oh, so Hillary?” Um… no? To be fair, until he dropped out, I was most likely going to vote for Kucinich…

And if one of you says that I would have been throwing away my vote, I swear I’m going to hurl. I don’t think it’s throwing away a vote for someone who actually stands for what I believe in. As elven is he is. And he is. I get that, too.

(Oh, and no one calls it a “tongue stud” anymore! Come on media! Get with the times!)

Regardless, Dennis dropped out of the race, and I no longer had a candidate. Until yesterday. I think.

The Kennedys are now backing Obama. And there are like millions of them. (Wouldn’t it be weird if your family was a voting bloc?) Apparently someone on the Clinton campaign said something along the lines of “this endorsement won’t change three votes.” But Obama, in an interview on the Today Show responded: “Well, there are more than 3 Kennedys, so there goes that.” (Not exact quote. Sue me. OK, you probably can sue me, but please don’t, k?)

I came home for lunch yesterday and turned on the TV. Ted Kennedy was delivering his endorsement speech at American University. From his aging body, his down-turned mouth, I heard the familiar New England accent, the echo of Kennedys past. I don’t know what it was, but for some reason seeing him up there with Patrick and Caroline standing behind him… I was moved.

Maybe the Kennedy’s are the same dynasty as they were in the 60s, and maybe I am caught up in the same Camelot that my parents were wooed by so many years ago, but when the Kennedys take a stand so strongly behind one candidate, I guess I actually think that means something.

Then Obama got up to speak. And I finally got it. I mean, listen. I knew I was being sold. I knew I was drinking the water. I was fully aware that I was falling for whatever marketing strategy had been laid out for Obama. I drawn in by his carefully worded, perfectly emphasized talking points <puts on her evil marketing horns>, but I guess it didn’t matter.

When I got back to the office after lunch, I told my friend aBove that I kinda got it. I got what the big deal was about, but I told him I wasn’t sold. Yeah, he’s a great orator, but I feel like he gets smarmy in debates. His interviews are lackluster and contrived. But wow, the man can deliver a speech.

Then aBove shocked me, not because he said something that actually made sense (because he does do that on occasion), but because what he said made sense and was true: Once you become president, you don’t have to debate anymore. Not in the same way, at least. You have to be a great orator and inspire a nation.

I called my mom last night to tell her about my day, what had happened to me politically. To hear her speak about the Kennedys was to hear a young woman speak about her first true love. She was overwhelmed that her daughter finally understood what she had felt about the Kennedys all those years ago. She understood how hearing Ted Kennedy speak would inspire a change in me, would inspire confidence. She said that had she known that the Kennedys were going to endorse Obama, she would have changed her vote (cast just the day before). It’s so nice when my mom and I can share something, anything, that doesn’t have to do with some family tragedy. Rather, we got to share something uplifting and inspiring. Something that united mother and daughter in hope.

So this post was supposed to be about how if political endorsements work so well, then why can’t endorsements in dating. I mean, I’m pretty sure Carrie M. would endorse me to possible suitors. Right? But I’m pretty sure friend-endorsements never have as much power as political ones.

Now only if I were friends with the Kennedys…


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  1. * Jessica:) says:

    I endorse you too! But only to Jewish men over 5′ 10”. (Real height, not advertised height.) Can I do that? Endorse you to only a targeted group? And was that coherent? I think it’s time to dive back into my school work now… I’ll work on that Jane-Knish Is Awesome speech too.

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 5 months ago
  2. * bigspoon says:

    I have a big glass of Kool-aid over here waiting for you! But seriously…I totally understand your position. I think Obama IS a great orator. And I ❤ the Kennedy’s too. And I will work for whichever Democrat comes out of the primary intact and not bleeding out of multiple orifices. But you know my candidate 🙂 We’ll see how it all plays out now. All in all, I’m just excited that this debate has brought out the young voters. That’s ALWAYS good for Democracy. 🙂

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 5 months ago
  3. * aBove says:

    Yesterday’s conversation made me wonder if the founding fathers assumed that dynastic political families would exist 200+ years after they signed the declaration. Ted Kennedy might not have a seat in the House of Lords, as such, but the man is essentially the closest thing to Landed Nobility that our system allows. And certainly the same families exist in the Republican Party. Of course, our system is supposed to avoid many of the pitfalls inherent in inherited political power, ensuring, for example, that the inept progeny of our previous monarch doesn’t get put in “The Big Chair.” Then again, we all saw how well that concept worked out.

    Maybe it’s simply a factor of being an independent minded Vermonter, a state which is home to a small town which is somewhat casually considering arresting the POTUS should he ever actually decide to visit the Green Mountains, but endorsements don’t do a whole lot for me. I mean, yes, if the surviving patriarch of the family who essentially speaks directly from the soul of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (Not to be confused with the State of Massachusetts, a physiological perspective involving a love of Samuel Adams and the propensity to punch anything that ends with “Yankee” and doesn’t being with “F*ck”)… If that man was to say “You should date that girl” then I’d probably listen.

    But in general, dating endorsements don’t work for the same reasons the political ones don’t. Either you already know who you’re going to date and you don’t need your friends approval, or your essentially listening to a message that says “Hey, this guy is pretty close to the guy you’d really like to elect.” (or girl. I get it too.)

    Let me end this egregiously long comment by saying, any vote that gets Kucinich’s wife more TV time is never a waste in my book.

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 5 months ago
  4. * carrie m says:

    are you saying that my endorsement wouldn’t have the same clout as a kennedy’s? i drink at LEAST as much as old ted. except i’ve never been found with a hooker in my car. but gimme some time. i’m still young.

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 5 months ago
  5. * bigfork says:

    As one of the shmucky politicians that has endorsed Obama, I want to say welcome to the club (btw, the cool aid is grape flavored).

    As much as I love and adore bigspoon with all of my heart, we disagree on this one little point.

    | Reply Posted 10 years, 5 months ago

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