Happy Labor Day? Not in Appalachia

(or any­where else, real­ly).

CHARLESTON — The por­tion of Appalachi­an states liv­ing in pover­ty last year increased by 114,000 peo­ple to 13.3 mil­lion, accord­ing to U.S. Cen­sus Bureau fig­ures released Tues­day.

But it's all going swim­ming­ly, isn't it? That's what the man tells us, and that's what we know. Unless, of course, you pay atten­tion.

I'm such an unpre­dictable seat-of-my-pants vot­er I should be shot. I read every­thing I can on the can­di­dates, always have, and like a dog eat­ing cat­shit, I even­tu­al­ly get sick of it all and vote my unre­li­able instincts. This year, after vot­ing for George I in '88 (please for­give my youth­ful indis­cre­tion) and after those straight Lib­er­tar­i­an tick­ets I vot­ed until 2004, when the doo-doo hit the fan and I vot­ed Ker­ry, I will be vot­ing the Oba­ma tick­et. There are no real can­di­dates for me out there. I'm set­tling. I think a lot of us must feel that way. Where is the pro-gun, pro-abor­tion, anti-death penal­ty, anti-fuck­ing-around-in-oth­er-coun­tries, stay-out-of-my-bed­room, small-com­mu­ni­ty-mind­ed can­di­date? Maybe I just don't pay enough atten­tion, or look in the right places. It's been known to hap­pen.

Any­way. We're all work­ing for a liv­ing in our own way. I hope that what­ev­er work you do goes well for you today and tomor­row. In the mean­time, sit tight here and wait for a Den­nis Maha­gin poem lat­er on today or tomor­row, and the Toma­to Girl review I promised last week some­time this week. Sor­ry I didn't get a lot done these last few days, as the fam­i­ly and I drove eight hours across MA and NY and back to show off our new daugh­ter. Not fun. I'm pale by nature, and my win­dow-hang­ing arm is red like a spanked ass, and I'm sort of sun-sick. In my off moments, though, I'm read­ing Matt Wray's Not Quite White: White Trash and the Bound­aries of White­ness.

Don't you wish you were me?

Don't answer that.

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