Caught and polled

I don’t generally think of myself as a political animal.  If you asked me to give you a list of my interests, politics would probably feature somewhere between ‘cauliflower’ and ‘cutting my toenails’, if at all.

And yet, in the past few days, I have been constantly drawn to the news. I even watched the BBC Parliament channel for a few minutes the other evening (while they were ‘debating’ the Digital Economy Bill on their last night before breaking up – if that’s the kind of rubbish the last day produces, I’d rather they spent their final hours in the Commons playing Kerplunk and Connect 4 – but let’s move on).  Already Mr SB and I are drawing up our battle plans for Election Night – should we take the next day off and stay up all night, or should we just plan to get up for work at 2am and drink gallons of coffee?

Part of this enthusiasm is probably because I still remember the night of May 1st 1997, and the sense of a new, optimistic national mood as I went to work the following morning, having voted out my local ‘Cash for Questions’ Tory and installed a fresh-faced Blair Babe in his place. There was a real feeling that Things Could Only Get Better. Oh, how times have changed, and oh, how the people in power haven’t.

But, when I really think about it, the main reason for my fascination is probably the same as the reason for my obsession with cricket. I love the numbers. There, I’ve said it.

Maybe it’s my scientific background, or maybe I’m just a natural born geek. (Maybe those two things are related. I should do an experiment.)  But I could look at this, or this, or even this for hours. I always felt a bit sorry for Peter Snow on election night, because he was always a figure of fun, leaping about in front of his swingometer like a kitten dropped into a box of wool – but I would have loved that job. My shoes would have been better, too.

So I think what I’m saying is that I’m looking forward to election night in the same way that I’d be looking forward to a test match.  It’s not about who wins (this is possibly where it differs from cricket, of course), it’s about how we get there.  It’s about the subtle nuances: a couple of seats here, a surprisingly big swing with the new boundary there, a star batsman bowled by a promising debutant somewhere else, and the excitement of a close contest with an unpredictable outcome.

Because I’m British, I shall, of course, be rooting for the underdog. And if anyone wants me in the next few hours, I’ll be hitting F5 on my blog stats page.


~ by somethingblonde on April 10, 2010.

One Response to “Caught and polled”

  1. It’s just occurred to me that some of you might see my ‘being British, rooting for the underdog’ remark as a veiled pro-BNP statement. Those of you who know me will know that this interpretation couldn’t be further from the truth if it tried.

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