Ever watched Stephen Colbert’s “Better Know a District Segment”? Story of my life. Today, I had to clean out a file cabinet which was supposed to have 100 files (1 for each Senator) and 435 files (1 for each Representative in Congress). Let me assure you, it had a few hundred more than that, many severely outdated. I ended up having to make about 240 new folders.
A little Colbert for y’all: http://www.colbertnation.com/better-know-a-district
The file cabinet did have some bulging files from people who spent years of supporting the agency I work for (The Institute for Museum and Library Services) and for having a lot of interactions with the office (every single correspondence is kept FOREVER… well, not actually forever) but a long time. My favorite files to see (and take out of the cabinet) were Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (stopped being a Senator in 2009), Representative Rahm Emmanuel (stopped being a rep in 2009), Edward “Ted” Kennedy (died in 2009 — what a big year!), and Representative Anthony Weiner (left office in 2011 because of that sexting scandal).
A lot of the Reps and Senators were not on my radar at all, but reading their names, I definitely “better knew” a LOT of districts. I learned Alaska, North and South Dakotas, Wyoming and Vermont only have 1 each– a Representative at large.
Ok, so this might not be a super clear lesson from my internship or anything, but this isn’t an episode of Modern Family (I know, you’re thinking “it’s not??”). I learn a lot from paying attention. I could have been daydreaming all day, but instead, I got to know my country’s government a lot better.
Do you know who represents you? My Senators are William “Mo” Cowan (I found out it’s pronounced like cow(the animal)-ann (the name) when I spoke to someone at his office last week), Elizabeth Warren (I love her so much), and my Rep is Jim McGovern.
Better know your district, and pay attention. You never know what may be important.