The observations of a 50 something with lots of experience in politics, government, life and learning.

Monday, September 25, 2006


You know, when I was in high school, we made fun of Warren G Harding making up the word "normalcy" rather than using "normality." And now you see "normalcy" everywhere. Standards are falling, but we didn't need a grammarian to tell us that, did we?

You know life is weird when cleaning the bathroom gives you a kick! I have literally done no housework for six months (some would say I haven't done any for 35 years....)and the effects are startling. My apologies to anyone who stayed with us during that period.

So Saturday saw me scrubbing the bathroom and having the best ole time. Now, once that was done, I have to admit that my concentration waned and I never did tackle the refrigerator or anything more than 1/2 the kitchen counter and the coffeemaker. But hey, we don't want to make too quick a transition here. I might get the "bends."

The classic question is "How ARE you?" I think people are waiting for PTSS to set in. Well, maybe I'm in denial, but I'm FINE. I did my best. I have to admit that finally looking at the vote totals from all the communities was a little disconcerting. In some cases, I knew I had never gotten traction in a community, for a variety of reasons. But in other cases, I worked my butt off and didn't see the success I expected.

And then there's my hometown. God bless them every one.

And then there is the GREAT CITY OF NORTH ADAMS. Which is really a tribute to the Abuisi family. God love 'em.

So this a.m. I go back to work. Lots of seniors to help and lots of caregivers to nurture. I think I will have enough on my plate for the next few months.

And my book proposal just went off to the agent.....

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


Three hours until the polls open; 16 until they close. A hell of a ride.

I spent yesterday watching other people work their tails off for me. I just obsessed and listened to rumors and tried to explain the rumors. All for NAUGHT.


Chicken Marbella for dinner cooked by Chef Sammons and then I crashed.

We head off at 6:45 for a latte and a tour of the polls.

I have received so many calls and notes telling me that we ran a good race. It means everything to me.

I certainly have the most incredible volunteer corps ever assembled in Berkshire County politics.

Thank you to ALL of you.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006


There's a phrase somewhere, perhaps Biblical, about not being a prophet in your own country.

Well, that's how I'm feeling this a.m. about the ENDORSEMENT OF THE SPRINGFIELD REPUBLICAN. Here is an editorial board that read the press releases, watched the Channel 57 debate, listened to the competition and says that my nine years as a Selectman will serve the people of the First Senate District well. It's as objective view as you can get. They didn't have a dog in the fight and they just looked at the landscape.

To say I'm honored is an understatement. It will certainly be important in the 16 towns outside Berkshire County that have a greater readership of the Republican. And I hope it's an indication to undecided Berkshire County voters that there is a prophet in their midst.

This was great news because yesterday started off with one of the usual idiot letters. I need to shrug stuff like that off better. I am improving, but the lies and misrepresentations "frost my cookies" as one of my friends said last night. But that beginning of the day was MORE than compensated for by a wonderful coffee at the home of my friend Margie Metzger who brought a diverse and interesting group of undecided voters together for a lively discussion. We got some converts and we talked serious issues. Food for the soul.

There are so many good, thoughtful people out there who DO want good government, intelligent choices and an end to cronyism. Hopefully enough of them will turn out on Tuesday to make a statement and the need for a fresh voice in the State Senate.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006


I achieved a "zen state" about the campaign.

Somewhere in between last night's candidates' forum, which was a bit bizarre, and tonight's, I realized that "jacta alia est" or words to that effect. The die had been cast. I had done everything I could do to try and win. Although there were 13 days to go before the primary, with our radio buy completed we had put the final push on and now could only tweak around the edges, work on GOTV and say our prayers.

As they would say in an Alka Seltzer commercial (OK, so I'm dating myself...) "what a relief it is."

Rumors continue to fly about who's up, who's down, who will be endorsing whom etc. etc. etc. It will continue to be that way until 9/19. But I have given up fretting about it (a possible endorsement of another candidate by someone sort of tangential to the whole process had me in a tizzy last I'm sanguine!) and decided rather to concentrate on the fact that I'm proud of me and this whole damn campaign. People have worked hard. We've focused on issues of importance. We've built a wonderful volunteer network of caring and supportive people who believe in good government. We've had fun and we've made friends. We've given people hope that things can change for the better in the political arena.

This achievement has not been without cost. One of our volunteers dropped dead of a heart attack. Another suffered a subdural hematoma. Three volunteers had offspring who had serious medical problems. Three others had parents in similar situations -- one has already died. It was as if we had been cursed.

But what it's really taught us is that winning isn't everything. It's about doing the right thing, remembering that friends, family, health, sickness etc. are all more important. So the tragedies have given us perspective and understanding. And this campaign really IS a family.

There are, of course, more tales to be told. About the weird forum last night. About the WONDERFUL WEDDING of our son David and his bride Jenny Hansen Ware. About how I collected enough campaign donations at the wedding to finally get Betsy's radio spots on the air. We've done a lot with a little. But it's a good metaphor for government.

But we'll save some of these stories for the next installment. I'm exhausted and ready for sleep. There's a lot to be said for "1/2 the calorie Cookie Dough Hagen Daas" and a Jack Daniels Manhattan as the perfect end to the perfect day.