Q. I prefer not to vote for either major party presidential candidate. What must I do to "write in" a candidate at my polling place? -- A.G., of Millstadt
A. I'm sure Mitt and Barack will be disappointed to learn of your feelings, but nothing could be easier than submitting a write-in vote. Here's what to do:
On every ballot, you'll find five candidates for president -- Romney, Obama, Gary Johnson (Libertarian), Jill Stein (Green) and a blank for Write-in. To the left of each, you'll see a blank oval.
To submit your write-in vote, darken the oval to the left of Write-in and write in a name on the blank line. That's all there is to it. When your ballot is run through the ballot reader, the darkened oval will alert election officials to look at your ballot and make a special tally of your write-in vote.
But I hope you're not thinking of writing in just anyone. You can write in the names of only those candidates who filed a declaration of intent to be a write-in presidential candidate with the St. Clair County clerk's office.
So, your choice is limited to the 11 people who submitted that declaration to St. Clair County Clerk Bob Delaney by Sept. 6. The list, which Delaney was kind enough to fax me, includes Michael Hawkins, of Bridgeview, Cecil James Roth, of Genesco, Joann Breivogel, of Chicago, and eight other people from outside Illinois you've most likely never heard of.
If you write in anybody else or, say, Superman in protest, your vote will be ignored (but you'll feel better, I suppose). By the way, there is one write-in for the 12th District U.S. House seat -- Shon-Tiyon Horton, of Alton. All polling places will have a list of valid write-in candidates for your perusal, Delaney said. See you there.
Q. Several months ago, my sister was at my house watching a movie featuring Melissa Gilbert. She played the CEO of a company but left to go back to her family-owned horse stables, where she would ride every day. We looked everywhere, but couldn't find the name of the movie. -- Ilene Lindauer, of Belleville
A. I'm really feeling my oats today, so from your sketchy outline I have not one, but two possibilities for you.
The one that seems to get two hooves up from horse lovers is a 2005 Hallmark production entitled "Thicker Than Water." In it, Gilbert plays high-powered L.A. attorney Natalie Jones, who discovers that her late father once was married to a rodeo queen.
So, she heads back to the family ranch, where she finds a half sister (Lindsay Wagner as Jess Jarrett) she never knew existed. Jess is having trouble keeping her mother's wild horses on the land she is leasing, so Natalie steps in to help while, of course, falling in love with a handsome vet.
Considering it's Hallmark, you probably can assume everybody will live happily ever after but most critics say it's a pleasant way to spend 90 minutes or so and the scenery is beautiful. The best thing is you can buy a used DVD copy for as little as $3 on Amazon.
The other possibility is "Sacrifices of the Heart," in which Gilbert plays another L.A. attorney, who returns to help her brother run the family farm because their father (Ken Howard) is developing Alzheimer's. It's written by Patti Davis, whose own famous father, Ronald Reagan, developed Alzheimer's.
But I don't see horses figuring prominently in this movie -- and it has not been released on DVD that I can find. Of course, if neither of these fit the bill, please whinny and I'll look further.
Do you know anyone in the Belleville area who prepares resumes? -- Bernie, of Belleville
Jesse Frederick would like to add you to his resume.
He says he has had a deep passion for writing ever since penning "The Underwater Time Machine" at age 8. He interned as a writer/editor/researcher in college.
Then, after illness forced him to leave a family-operated construction business, Frederick began working as a writer and editor for a resume company. Now, he runs Savvy Scribe Resumes and would be glad to talk to you if you call 791-9238. Find out more at www.savvyscriberesumes.com.
Who voiced the famous lead-in to the original "The Outer Limits": "There is nothing wrong with your television set ... "
Answer to Wednesday's trivia: On Oct. 1, 1982, the first commercial compact disc -- Billy Joel's "52nd Street" -- was released in Japan. However, the first test CD featured Richard Strauss' "An Alpine Symphony," and the first CD pressed at a factory was ABBA's "The Visitors," but it was not released until later. The format took a while to catch on, but hundreds of billions have been sold in 30 years. The first million-seller? Dire Straits' "Brothers in Arms" in 1985.
Send your questions to Roger Schlueter, Belleville News-Democrat, 120 S. Illinois St., P.O. Box 427, Belleville, IL 62222-0427 or email@example.com