Dear Snarky – How Can We Tell a Family Member Not to Run for Public Office?

Dear Snarky,

 My niece announced to the family that she wants to run for public office and quite frankly a lot of us think it might just be the worst idea ever. She’s young, has no experience and has problems handling a day job. It’s so bad we have an over under on how long she’ll last at each job she gets

 I admire her enthusiasm and her wanting to “be the change” but I think she needs to at least volunteer on a political campaign or stay at a job longer than three months before she just throws herself out there.

 Our biggest worry is that she got some insurance money from a car accident and she wants to spend it to fund her campaign. Anyone in the family over the age of 30 told her she needs to use the money to pay off her college loans.

 Do you have any advice on how we can get her to change her mind without creating major family drama?

 Signed, Worried & Concerned

 Dear Worried

 Lately my solution to most of my letter writers has been to tell them to mind their own business. But today I’m not going to do that. I’m going to tell you to get involved. This is the mom of young adults in me talking but your niece needs to hear that she should be very conservative with how she spends that insurance money.

I’ll give her huge props for no wanting to blow it on designer handbags or a sweet new ride and wanting to run for office can be a noble endeavor but she still needs to very seriously ponder  spending that money to self finance a campaign.

Handling your niece with love and  respect (i.e. don’t talk down to her) suggest that she needs to enlist a firm to do an exploratory study on her running for office where everything from her chances of winning to how much money and time she’s going to have to invest to be considered a contender will be examined.

 This should be a g-i-g-a-n-t-i-c eye opener and I’m betting it’s not the amount of money that’s required that’s going to make her reconsider but the time that she’ll have to spend. Based on her employment record I’m guessing, umm how can I put this nicely, that she gets bored easily and once she sees the amount of effort and the hard and sometimes very tedious work it takes to get elected to almost any office she might cool off on this idea.

If she doesn’t be positive and wish her luck. Maybe this is her calling and she’ll surprise everyone.

If you have a question for Dear Snarky – advice with an attitude – email me at snarkyinthesuburbs@gmail.com. 😉

Ugh- Politics

Can we all join hands right now and say a prayer for  all the Hawkeyes out there? And by this I mean the residents ofpolitical-cocktail-party-napkin Iowa who are of legal voting age. These poor put-upon people have to endure a plague of politicians that is so intense it’s Old Testament in nature.

I heart the Constitution and the voting process, but if I lived in Iowa I’d be afraid to visit a local coffee shop or cafe for the next year and a half. In fact, it’s probably next to impossible to leave your house without being molested by campaigners or campaign literature.

And may Lady Liberty have mercy on your soul if you’re a farmer or own a tractor because the TV news crews will want a good old boy soundbite from you. It won’t matter if you just moved to Iowa from New York City. As long as your fanny is perched in the seat of a John Deere something or other, you’re news gold.

I think this is a case of being careful what you wish for. Sure, it sounds good to be the state with its caucus being the first major electoral event for nominating the president. But in reality it has to get old being stuck behind the (insert candidate of your choice name here) van, bus, or shudder, motorcade.

It’s not that I don’t have passion for the voting process. Years ago I was certain my campaign for Richfield High School Student Council vice president would scar me for life and severely hinder my ability to participate in anything political in nature, but I’ve managed to work through the pain and bitterness (not that it didn’t take decades).

I do, though, what to go on record as saying no one should lose an election solely due to an opponent’s throwing a “get out the vote” beer bust. Hello, I had amazing signs lining the school hallways and my campaign speech was stellar and didn’t end in “Dudes, let’s get drunk!” (Too bad my opponent can’t say that.)

In fact, I consider myself politically polyamorous. There are things I like about almost every party’s persuasion. I credit my parents for this. My dad is very much a Republican and my mother, well, she was what you might call a train wreck in terms of her voting record. One of her claims to fame was being the single vote in the Texas county we lived in for John Anderson in the 1980 presidential campaign.

I remember watching the televised returns with my parents and there on the screen pops up John Anderson — 1. She was beaming with pride. For a solid week the whole family referred to her as Mrs. Anderson. We did it to tick her off, but I think she loved it.

I’ve even got some caucus experience under my belt. This maybe why I so keenly feel for Iowans. Back when I lived in Nevada, I participated in the state’s presidential caucus. Of course, because it’s Nevada the caucus took place in a ballroom of a casino.

Nothing says serious debates and thoughtful deliberation like being adjacent to blackjack tables and nickel slots. It also didn’t help that multiple bars were open 24/7. By 10 a.m. folks were tipsy, by lunchtime they were hammered and by 3 p.m. it would be hours (if not days) before a lot of them could pass a field sobriety test.

Not to cast aspersions BUT the most inebriated caucus participants seemed to be for one candidate. I, being for the other candidate, was growing tired of the drunken fratboy-like antics of this opposing group. We were here to make history people — sober up! As the day went on I, finally, had reached the breaking point and felt it was my civic duty to do something about this flock of fools.

So, I got up, strutted over and told them to drink some coffee and be good Americans. I really went red, white and blue all over their asses. Guess what I got in return? Boos. Yes, I was booed! And not gently booed. Oh no, it was boisterous booing with an overlay of heckling.

People, I was thrilled! If you don’t have “getting booed for doing the right thing” on your bucket list, put it on there immediately. It’s beyond stimulating. As the boos grew louder I stood even taller and did what I believe our founding fathers would have not just approved of, but rewarded me with a proud tip of their tricorn. I poured a drink on the loudest booer’s head. And then I quickly walked/ran to the nearest ladies room and hid in a stall for a good 30 minutes.

God Bless America.

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*Attention Snarky Friends, I have a brand new book out. It’s the second in the Snarky in the Suburbs series – Snarky in the Suburbs Trouble In Texas. You can buy it for your Kindle or in paperback on Amazon.  It’s also available for the Nook or you can get it for your Kobo reader. Click on a link and give it a test read.  I hope you like it! 🙂