At last, the saga ends.

In two previous blogs, I recounted my attempts to vote in the November 7 election. The first noted that three out of four voting machines at my Jefferson County polling station weren't functioning on the big day, forcing me to opt for a provisional ballot; after filling it out, I was given a stub/receipt emblazoned with a phone number to call in order to find out "if" my vote counted. The second noted what happened when I dialed the appropriate digits on November 20. My call rang through to someone who had no idea how to process my inquiry; she eventually advised me to phone back a couple of days later, when the line was supposed to be operating correctly.

I finally got the opportunity to call again on November 27, and this time, the automated set-up was functional. A female voice with a robotic tinge advised me to punch in the number on the upper right-hand corner of my stub, and after doing so, I was told to wait while my request was processed. Approximately a nanosecond later, the voice was back. "Your ballot was counted," she told me. "Thank you for calling. Goodbye." Click.

So there you have it. The system works! Slowly and badly, but it works! God bless America! -- Michael Roberts

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts