I previously wrote that I liked to vote at the polls as I liked to feel I was taking part in the process and it always annoyed me that the Absentee ballots were counted last if at all.
I heard very recently that nearly half of California voters would vote absentee, and that combined with the absurd number of initiatives that are on the ballot it makes sense. (I hate the initiative process - do I look like a legislator? is my job description Legislator? Most initiatives that are not put there by the legislature are placed there to steer around the legislature and manipulate the public. Beyond irksome.)
With a sample ballot, you can sit down in front of the computer and do some research on http://smartvoter.org or other site and ponder the implications of arcane legal language even if it is summarized. Normally I would then tote that into the polls, but with so many things to vote on, I fear making a mistake and stakes are just too important in this election to screw it up, so last night I carefully transferred the information to a real ballot and mailed it in.
Note to Calif Voters. That humongous ballot weighs 1.1 oz and will cost you 59 cents to mail. I'm sure they'll take it postage due, but who wants to take that kind of chance? 11pm: THIS JUST IN - Most counties have an agreement with the post office to deliver ballots even if they are short of postage - ref.
For voters in contested states where voter disenfranchisement is rampant, voting by mail is a very effective way to sidestep the crap about all the voting machines for the polling place save one are broken and you'll have to wait for hours. Plus voting by mail means no voting machine to magically switch your Obama vote to McCain (I forget the ref - think it was on dailykos, but I'm not sure.)
However you do it, be sure to vote. My preference is you vote Democrat of course.