Thinking It Over

A Fool In NH Column Heading

I’ve had to think long and hard about my plans for 2018.
My recent surgery and recovery has given me a lot of time to consider what is really important in my life.
It’s a bit of a quandary though. After all, not only did I survive the operation, but I also had survived a challenge last fall for my bid to once again represent the Flatlander Party as their candidate for governor of New Hampshire in this year’s election after my challenger dropped out of the race after a fuzzy convenience store surveillance video showed someone who looked a lot like him pocketing a pack of Tic-Tacs without paying.
I had gratefully accepted the honor once again and in front of twenty to thirty Flatlander party members I gave a rousing speech about how I was ready to hit the ground running and to give it my best effort and to fight for change and blah, blah, blah.
But today I’m not so sure.
When you are in your sixties, lying in a hospital bed for five days after being given a brand new lease on life – as well as a new pair of hospital socks – many thoughts run through your head: Have I done what I really want in life? Have I used my talents to the best of my ability? What kind of vegetable are they going to serve with dinner? I hope not green beans again, I’m getting really tired of those.
While I was at home recuperating, I did get many calls from Flatlander Party members wishing me the best and then hinting at what is going to happen going forward. Some very sincere in their concern and others just wanting to know what the next move, if any, for the party would be if I didn’t run.
I pretty much assured them that I would be back on my feet in no time and ready to hit the campaign trail with more energy and a renewed vigor. It was the easy answer, so I could get off the phone and get back to sleep.
Now that I am getting stronger, I am having second thoughts. Is this what I really want to do, spend months on the campaign trail, giving the same speech over and over, demonizing my opponents, making promises that I could never keep at bean-hole bean suppers (not my favorite food).
On the other hand, I made a commitment to the party and I couldn’t just walk away from that. Would they be able to find a new candidate who would be ready to sacrifice the time and energy to a vigorous campaign, to be ready to take and give the name-calling and nastiness that voters expect and deserve and, most importantly, be able to handle bean-hole beans.
I was also reminded by our party chairperson that we had already spent most of our budget on lawn signs and bumper stickers with my name on it and if I dropped out they would have no choice then to recruit one of the other three people named Smith in the Flatlander Party to run. (None of who would make great candidates for reasons I won’t go into here just in case they do decide to run. No reason to give their possible opponents any fodder.)
As far as what I really want in life and how I’d like to use my talents, I guess I could put those on hold for a few months for the good of the party. Chances are good that I wouldn’t win anyway and it would all be over by November.
Of course, if I did win, that would mean at least a two-year commitment and any of my other hopes and dreams would have to be put on hold. (Of course, I would get to collect that nifty $100,000 a year salary which, in all honesty, might be a little more than some of my hopes and dreams are paying at the moment.)
So, as you can see, I have a lot to consider.
I suppose I will have to make up my mind soon in fairness to all involved (especially those other three Flatlander Party members named Smith).
Will it be a matter of doing what is right for me and pursuing those hopes and dreams or sacrificing myself for the good of the people and run again for governor?
I’ll keep you posted.

Brendan is the author of “The Flatlander Chronicles” and “The Best of A F.O.O.L. In New Hampshire” which are available at his website


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