Paganistan: Notes from the Secret Commonwealth

In Which One Midwest Man-in-Black Confers, Converses & Otherwise Hob-Nobs with his Fellow Hob-Men (& -Women) Concerning the Sundry Ways of the Famed but Ill-Starred Tribe of Witches.

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Voter #666

 The Satanic Temple requests that Boston fly its flag after Supreme Court  ruling | CNN Politics

I'm working the Midterm election at the local poll when I notice the guy in the Church of Satan tee-shirt standing in line to get his ballot.

Not just the tee-shirt: he's also got the shaven head, goatee, and horns-up pentagram tattoo on his shoulder. Well, this is Paganistan, Land of Free Peoples, and the pagan neighborhood in particular, where you're free to worship (or not) whomever you bloody well choose.

I have to wonder what it's like to be a Satanist in a sea of pagans. There's nothing wrong with this guy's courage, that's for sure, and I even feel a certain amount of fellow feeling. Hey, I'm a pagan: my god wears horns, too.

Each voter is assigned a voter number when they receive their ballot. It's one of the many safeguards in place that guarantee an accurate count: so many ballots handed out, so many ballots handed in. Anyone who thinks that elections are being tampered with has obviously never worked at a poll, and witnessed the multiple layers of protective precautions in place against precisely such malfeasance.

I'm sitting at the ballot table assigning sequential voter numbers as the ballots are handed out. It looks like our friend Anton Jr. is by way of being voter #666 at this particular polling place.

I'll have to remember to mention it to him, I think. He'll certainly find that amusing.

Then we get busy and, in the flurry of activity, I forget to tell him.


A non-religious friend remarked to me the other day that he actually finds a certain amount of comfort in the sheer randomness of life. I can't help but agree.

Maybe coincidence is the Universe showing that it has a sense of humor after all.




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Poet, scholar and storyteller Steven Posch was raised in the hardwood forests of western Pennsylvania by white-tailed deer. (That's the story, anyway.) He emigrated to Paganistan in 1979 and by sheer dint of personality has become one of Lake Country's foremost men-in-black. He is current keeper of the Minnesota Ooser.


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