So one of my mentors came to me and my crew one day recently asking, "Unnuh ready fi a Christmas election?"
I think he may have been talking in jest. Or was he serious as a judge? Or perhaps he incorporated elements of both. Whatever his level of seriousness, it left me with quite the headache. You see, apart from the fact I work in a media house (so that means much helter-skelter coverage for months as a lead-up), it's the stress on the general public that irks me. Then, of course, Christmas has its own fair share of turmoil. Buy this, advertise that, get this on sale, the traffic, the bunching, the statements of more money being circulated, but you're not feeling it in your pocket, the whole deal. I need a breath just thinking about it.
Now think about all of that Christmas 'cheer' mixed with the political tomfoolery that goes on and it's a potentially volatile combination. Can you imagine having to buy colour-specific toys for your children, aka, no green, yellow, orange or red? And when the motorcades get going, it can't be much of a motorcade if it's mired in Christmas-shopping traffic.
Furthermore, we journalists, even though the pay ain't as great as our private-sector compadres from other high schools and universities, still have a little Christmas shopping to do. That's not going to happen much, if we have to be following all the opinion polls and trying to get interviews as soon as something else turns in the political race. And if the other institutions run like this North Street entity, then reporters will not be getting any vacation during that time. Cripes! So, even though I have zero influence in the political chess game, I would really appreciate it if they hold off any Christmas-election talk.
There are a few upsides to having a poll in the Yuletide season though. One is that the political jingles would probably be a little more creative. Throw in a few "ho, ho, hos" with "who you voting for? (insert name of party of choice here)", might be catchy for the radio and television. Another argument for Xmas polls is, well, let's face it, Jamaicans love the 'pork barrel' politics. In any case, politicians, especially around Christmas time, are already considered Santa Claus by those who refuse to actually work for a living. So why not just play Santa for real and get it over with.
But trust me on this one, no Christmas thing please! In fact, schedule it for early 2013. If the Mayan prediction is right, the world would have ended by then. Later.
Tell me when you think the election should be at email@example.com