Thursday, December 9, 2010

How Many Pages?? You Have to be Kidding, Right?

Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence

(Note to my readers, the following post is a rambling rant with no redeeming qualities or earth shattering revelations.)

I realize that I sometimes look at things a bit differently, many of my posts spill forth sick humor, maybe more like dribble forth sick humor, just one little dribble at a time. Well, I try to write them that way, subtle sick dribbles. Maybe that describes my whole blog, only you can tell.

I also realize the importance of the 2010 US Census.  Man and I were not home that day, and our forwarded mail did NOT include a forwarded form.  I was concerned.  A few weeks after we arrived back at the stick built a census worker knocked on my front door - - hooray, I am gonna get counted - - NO???  Said census worker was not interested in me, as I lived on the wrong side of the street (he was only enumerating the other side of the street), what they really wanted to know was all about the vacant home across the street.  Any chance at all any one was living there April 1st?  No, I explained, both the wife and husband had died and no one was living there. NO ONE.   Next, said census worker asked me a LOT of questions about the motor home that is parked in the yard.  Any chance anyone is living in there?  NO WAY, I respond.  What I should have said, was, Yes, hordes of mice, go do a census over there, I dare you.  I mean, the cargo doors have been open for years.  I would not be surprised to see a family of possum or raccoons in there.  Maybe even a red fox clan.  But, humans, NO WAY.

While this very nice and polite census dude was asking about the vacant home and the non-habitable motorhome I asked him how I could get counted, I mean, it is my civic duty and I want my heirs and great great heirs to be able to find me in 2082.  He writes down my address and the fact that Man and I have NOT been counted.

Weeks later another nice census person shows up at my door and now, Man and I are to be counted.  I expected her to hand me the forms and then let me fill them out.  But, not to be, instead she starts asking me questions, which I diligently answer.  I then asked if I could scan the form for my genealogy files.  She looked at me a bit funny, but allowed me to run to the scanner, the 4 page form in hand.  For some reason my scanner was running S-L-O-W, almost not running.  I scanned the first 3 pages, looked at number 4, realized there was not one thing on page 4 that was of value, took pity on said female census worker standing on my door stoop in the brisk spring (make that COLD) weather, and did not even bother to scan page 4. 

On the pages I did scan there were questions of our full names, my relationship to Man on page 2. Page 3 recorded our ages at last birth day, full birth dates, and our ethnic background.  Page 1 had no genie info at all, and like I said I did not scan page 4

I was disappointed, maybe I am a skeptic, whatever, I do know that my nasty sense of humor kicked in.   All this hooplah and my heirs and great great heirs will find out I lived at this address in 2010, my full name, Man's full name, and our full birth data, oh, and that we consider ourselves to be white.  Geeeshhhhh.  BUT I had done my civic duty, hooray!

The entire incident has been forgotten, I found other issues and chores and life events to deal with.  Until this AM when I was reading a blog from NARA (National Archives), NARAtions, titled, Have Your Say: 2010 Census Records!  Meredith Stewart wrote this peace. She is discussing 2010 Census appraisal and records schedule.  Down towards the end of her piece she states:  "Yes, together it’s over 40 pages..."

Hold it, stop the presses, say WHAT??  40 pages to discuss appraisal and records schedule for the 2010 census.  Is that the same 4 page, 3 scanned pages, that I encountered as the 2010 census?  It takes 10 times the pages to discuss the appraisal and records schedule that it took to record my data! 

And, that is when my friends, my dribbling sick sense of humor became a flood.  And, you are reading (if you are still with me here) my rant and rambling thoughts on the 2010 census.  It is OK, it is just me and my dribbling - -

* This rant is not to slam Meredith's article, fine job there Meredith.

** Oh, and, weeks after I did my civic duty, another nice census person showed up and asked me 20 minutes of questions about that non-habitable motorhome, AGAIN!  The bureau was just so concerned bout that rat trap, that they came back out to verify it was indeed vacant.  Yea, I get that too, every body counted meant lots of future $$ in the coffers, plus the re-alignment of voting precincts.  Our census really does have important reasons to be, but in my opinion the 2010 will never be famous among future family researchers.  Just my dribbling 2 cents worth.

***  All three census workers I encountered were polite, and dedicated to doing their jobs, thank you census workers for doing a fine job.

****  And, so ends my rant, which is akin in over stating, too verbose and probably does not make a lot of sense.  See, I have not had my coffee yet and I too can take 4 pages of primary data and end up with 40 pages to describe same.

***** Source of graphic long lost, found somewhere on the internet years ago, my apologies to the artist.


IrishEyesJG said...

HILARIOUS!!!! Thank you Carol. By the way, are you sure there are no humans living in that motorhome? Just trying to help out the Bureau. Cheers! Jennifer

Barbara Poole said...

Ha, I finally reread it, in-between all your emails! Have another cup of coffee. Your posts are always entertaining, but more so when you are waiting for somebody to wake up and/or get going. Glad to hear that the census workers were nice too. Wonder what will happen in 10 years.

Nolichucky Roots said...

Too funny. Rant away. Pity the poor ignored editors of the world trying to curtail our verbosity.