Posted by: Dahni | September 20, 2008

Politics, Polls & Parties

   OK, call me anal retentive because, I happen to believe that words have meaning. Go ahead and say that I’m out of sync because, I choose to use words according to their origin. Ridicule me because, I use an unabridged dictionary of the English language. Yes go ahead, I have already been laughed at and insulted personally, by the author of, ‘The Verbal Art of Self-Defense.’ What more could you do to hurt my ‘feelers’?

   Well, politics like so many of our words, come down to us from the ancient Greek language. Politics for many people, is a sore subject, a necessary evil or often something many run from as if it were a plague. In Greek, the word polis, was a walled city. Walls were built not to keep the people (the polls), inside, but to keep enemies out. Yes that’s right, if we lived there and then we would be the polls of the polis. Even the words police, policeman, policewoman etc. come from this same word. Polling places would be where the polls (the people), would congregate. The most common place was the public marketplace.

   The marketplace is where goods and services were bought, sold, bartered and exchanged. It was also, where news, beliefs, ideas, cultures and conversations were gathered and shared. It was a social event. It was a huge party. People spoke to and with each other. They conversed over conversation.

   In the United States, we are often divided along party lines, chiefly two. We are divided by the blue states or the red states. Division in the United States? What ever happened to, “United we stand, divided we fall?”

   Satellite images from space show, there are NO countries or boundary lines. Aerial photographs show, there are NO boundary lines separating each of our states either. This world is only separated by water or the inability or unwillingness to cross over. In our country, borders are all arbitrary or concocted by opinion. Opinion is not an evil thing, but the right of a civilized and free people to have and to hold. Conversation is lost when only opinions matter. Arguments erupt and the loudest voice seems to dominate. And thus, not only does the conversation abruptly end, but there just might not be another one. Who actually enjoys arguing, unless you are winning or are a lawyer? Conversation is for conversing, me to you; you to me, it’s the, ‘We the People,’ thing. 

   Years ago, I had the opportunity to visit Colonial Williamsburg in Virgina. Here is where our system of government grew its roots. Even then, there were disagreements, as the house-senate thing took shape. To get things accomplished, social events were often planned. Wives, girlfriends and others were invited. It was during these more civilized times that the verbal tones were of conversation and things got done. Yep, the political parties, actually had parties and they had them together, which is to say, with each other.

   What about now? Relax, I have found two things for us polls of the polis, whereby we can go to polling places (places of gathering), and converse happily about politics (the affairs of us polls and police people of the polis).

   One such place is the farmer’s market or some public marketplace, just like the polls and the police of the polis in ancient times.

   Another such place is, what I now put in writing for perhaps the first time. I call this a ‘Cigarty.’ A Cigarty is a cigar party. Now I am not advocating smoking, but there is more to a Cigarty than mere cigars. Not that this is a reason to start or to keep smoking, but cigars do NOT contain all the harmful chemicals as do cigarettes and most that smoke cigars rarely, if ever, inhale the smoke. There is something ritual about the practice of smoking cigars and to those which indulge in them. To many, it could well be considered romantic, sensual and even described as an almost religious experience.

   It is not just a male thing as there are many woman as well. The practice slices and dices through race, sex, creed, intellectual and economic lines of otherwise perceived separation. The bottom line is, at a Cigarty, there will be conversation! The art of conversation is seen and experienced almost immediately. Conversation ensues among those present that may not have otherwise happened. Fire Chiefs, Police Chiefs, business people, professional people, educators and even medical people gather, often in the same location with the average people on the street, celebrities, and spirtual people. Most such gatherings occur, in individual homes, outside or in certain business places. Inside, ventilation systems are sometimes so state-of-the-art, you may not even smell smoke. If not to smoke, these can be great places to meet people, but above all, to converse.

   I will close with an analogy. An expected father was met by a nurse and given all the usual information about his new child. The nurse went on and on and finally the man turned to her and said, “Look, I appreciate you telling me this stuff, but I don’t care when my child was born, how much the baby weighs, how long the measurement or anything else, I just want to see the baby!!!

   I don’t care how we do it, whether at a Cigarty, a party, some Farmer’s market, public market or wherever/whenever, I just want us polls, us police or polis people of the polis, to party around, the art of conversation!

Just Imagine,



  1. great post….

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