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Thoughts for the day before

Posted by Robin Abrahams  November 5, 2012 07:46 AM

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So ... what are your plans for tomorrow?

I'll be on WGBH between 1:30-2:00 to discuss politics and friendship and Facebook. I hope to vote before that.

Four years ago, on election day, I wrote the following. It's still good stuff to keep in mind. 

Updated for 2012, I give you Reasons to Rejoice Regardless:

Whoever wins tomorrow, nearly half the country will be very unhappy and afraid when the results are announced. Will that fear lead to spitefulness, isolationism, cynicism, vengeance? Or will it motivate us to continue to work for the world we'd like to see?

Right now, you've voted, or will tomorrow, and that's all, at this point, you can do. (If you are not voting and are eligible to do so, please get off my blog.) So I'd like to open up this post for some breathing space.

In your own personal worst-case scenario after tonight, what will still be true?

If tomorrow brings a political nightmare for me--

My husband and I will still love each other and support each others' dreams and have bread and cheese and wine by candlelight every Friday night. (Four years on, I've developed an intolerance for wine! But bread and cheese and love are enough on their own. Not that I don't complain sometimes.)

My dog will still smell really good and will crawl up from the foot of the bed in the mornings for snuggle time as soon as he knows I am awake.

Stephen King will continue on his streak of writing some of his best, most mature fiction to date. (He hasn't let me down on that score--plus, there's a remake of "Carrie" coming out this spring, with Julianne Moore as Carrie's mother!)

I will still live in the only city that has ever felt like home to me.

I will continue my recently renewed commitment to working out, which has made a huge difference already in my physical and mental health. And my new iPod is on the way, so I can pump it to "I Will Survive" and "Livin' on a Prayer" to my racing heart's content! (Working out is still an alternating struggle and joy. My musical tastes have not improved in the past four years. Workout playlist now contains such gems as "Gangnam Style" and "I Want U Back.")

Campari and soda will still be the most refreshing drink ever, even if everyone else I know finds it repellently bitter.

My book will still come out this spring. (It did!)

Theater and the visual arts will continue to expand, refresh, and delight my mind and heart and soul.

Dubliner cheese will still be the finest of all the cheeses, and readily available at many of our neighborhood stores.

My friends will still share ideas and jokes and trials and joys and everyday moments of grace or absurdity with me.

This Saturday's Torah portion will still be the one about new beginnings and "overnight" changes that are years in the making. (Actually, this Saturday's Torah portion is about the meeting of Rebecca and Isaac, which I have always taken as a warning about women who want to control history.)

I will still spend Thanksgiving with my family. (With my in-laws this year, but seeing my side of the family in December, which will be great fun.)

Eddie Izzard will still be funny.

"Battlestar Galactica" and "Lost" will still come back in early 2009. And season three of "Dexter" will continue to disappoint me. (Four years ago I was so young and naive! Hopes for serial dramas with a decent finale are currently pinned on "Breaking Bad" and "Mad Men.")

People will still have social dilemmas for me to solve.


None of this means that the election is a small thing. The world is a very narrow bridge, and narrow bridges are legitimately dangerous. There's reason to be afraid. But let's not scare ourselves more than we have to. What will still be true for you if tonight brings your worst-case scenario?

This blog is not written or edited by Boston.com or the Boston Globe.
The author is solely responsible for the content.

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About Miss Conduct
Welcome to Miss Conduct’s blog, a place where the popular Boston Globe Magazine columnist Robin Abrahams and her readers share etiquette tips, unravel social conundrums, and gossip about social behavior in pop culture and the news. Have a question of your own? Ask Robin using this form or by emailing her at missconduct@globe.com.
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Who is Miss Conduct?

Robin Abrahamswrites the weekly "Miss Conduct" column for The Boston Globe Magazine and is the author of Miss Conduct's Mind over Manners. Robin has a PhD in psychology from Boston University and also works as a research associate at Harvard Business School. Her column is informed by her experience as a theater publicist, organizational-change communications manager, editor, stand-up comedian, and professor of psychology and English. She lives in Cambridge with her husband Marc Abrahams, the founder of the Ig Nobel Prizes, and their socially challenged but charismatic dog, Milo.

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