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Terrifying Celebrity Encounter #1: Campaign Season

I saw a sign advertising Mike Gioia for City Council today as Roger and I and James were heading out into Queens. “How do you like Green for Mayor?” I asked Roger. Roger figures Green as a center-right liberal, and says Ferrer is just a politician with his finger in the wind. Roger’s not up for anyone much, he says, although he would gladly vote against Giuliani if he was running again. I haven’t taken a good look at the solid records or positions of the candidates, though I have been drowned in vicious smear ads from the Sunnyside/Woodside city council candidates, so I don’t really know who I’m voting for.

Then, like a jack-in-the-box, Mike Gioia pops out of the darkness next to me. “Aha, but who do you want for CITY COUNCIL is the question!” he says, lunging at me with a clipboard. I run down the street in terror.

The borough is awash with advertising, flyers in store windows, giant banners, one-sheet glossy brochures telling me that one candidate has never done a damn thing for the neighborhood, or another doesn’t care about education, jammed in my mailbox. As I settled back into my skin and continued down Roosevelt, having a candidate materialize on the sidewalk next to me came to seem like the next logical step in campaigning. How do I feel about people who care so much about a city council race? It makes me feel I should get as invested in local politics as I should have been in Hampshire College politics: i.e., not at all.

(I know I have a tendency to hyperbolize, but I promise you, I’m not exaggerating this one bit.)

Coda: the man’s name is Eric Gioia, I didn’t even remember it right. So much for your campaign, Mr. Gioia! I’ll be voting for your cousin Mike! Or rather not voting for anyone with your name at all, because I checked out the voter info handbook we got and frankly, ain’t no motor in the back of your political Honda.

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