Elections are a messy business when it comes to results and, unlike politicians who make a career out of the associated stress, no student running for the first time in the elections can be expected to be able to hold on to every shred of their sanity throughout elections night.
Last night - results night - was no different, and after meeting in the Waterhole yesterday evening and mingling (something I'm less self-conscious about after a week of shamelessly embarrassing myself in front of lecture theatres and in the street), the fourteen tired and stressed candidates were then handed some drinks vouchers, herded upstairs, briefed, herded around some more, held in a little pen, and then propelled onto stage.
I'm sure there was more to this process, but it all faded into the periphery as time slowed down and we all faced the fact that our collective week of hard campaigning work was about to be judged in the only way it could be. If there's one thing that puts people off running for office, I think it's got to be the public ordeal of elections night.
Last night's results produced some surprises, and some heart-wrenching moments. Seeing someone you have endless respect for absolutely devastated at being voted out is certainly enough to keep one's feet grounded. More positively, the raw enthusiasm I've seen on the faces of every successful candidate since the results makes me confident that next year, the Union has a great chance of taking all the good work done this year and pushing it even further forward.
And for me? Oh, well... You know... I WON! Thankyou to everybody who showed their support through Facebook and by
e-mail, everyone who helped me campaign, and of course everyone who
voted... (Find out who else won, here).
Typical of me, of course, the MAPO vote was the most awkward one to be counted last night. I won't even begin to try and explain the maths of what happened, because I don't really know, but basically the vote was so close that as the unsuccessful candidates' votes were redistributed, the last person standing against me (Sam) went from 404 to 706 votes, against my rise from 557 to 751.
I spent the rest of the night in a haze of saying endless and heartfelt thankyous to everyone, being surprised by some peoples' visceral reactions, and trying to figure out what I'd just achieved. I've also learnt that there's little I can do or say to an unsuccessful candidate to express my sadness that they didn't get in without sounding insincere. Yes, I know I'm normally a git to everyone, but sometimes my heart goes out to people. Just don't tell anyone I admitted that one...
I do hope every candidate who ran against me will stay in touch and
keep their good ideas coming in - this year more than any other, every
candidate for this position had a lot to offer the job, so I hope I can
have the chance to tap into those ideas.
As for me, I'll be taking up the role of Meeja & Publications Officer in August. In the meantime, Fraggy will become my new b*tch... I think that's how it works, right...? Right now though, I need to get some sleep, finish my degree, and try and work on my tan ;o)
Peace out /al - votemunki.co.uk
(Oh, p.s. - don't forget, if you're a student, you have the right to sack your Sabbs. If I turn out to be anything less than great, you have my permission to chuck me out and find someone better ;o)