Quote of the Week

"One cool judgment is worth a thousand hasty councils."
- Woodrow Wilson

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Sign, Sign Everywhere A Flipping Yard Sign

I'm sick of them. They're everywhere. Political campaign yard signs. Sign, sign everywhere a flipping yard sign.

It must be close to election time, because they are starting to annoy me. One or two in a yard here in there is fine. But do you need to get a four foot by eight foot billboard for every candidate running for every available seat that's a member of your favorite political party?

A guy down the road from me just put them up yesterday. I know him well enough to know that, besides the Presidential Candidates, he couldn't pick one of the others out of a line up of two people. But he's got their campaign yard sign, in a neat row with the rest of them. I'm sure he stopped at the local party headquarters and said "one of each, please." At least he has them front and center on his property. Ever see those people who get two sets of signs and put them on the very edges of their land? Makes it look like maybe they're their neighbor's signs.

This summer in Wisconsin, we had a recall election. There were lot's of signs out for that too. I ran out to my township hall to vote during my lunchbreak. On my way back, I got stuck behind a little car driving very slow. The backend of the car was covered with political bumper stickers. When he drove by a yard with signs supporting who he supported, he honked the horn and gave a "thumbs up" out the window. When he drove by a yard with signs supporting who he didn't like, he honked the horn and waved the middle finger out the window. Really? That's how far you take your political interest? Slowly cruising the Northwestern Wisconsin countryside honking and waving at..... signs?

I don't dare put out a sign. For the most part I don't like any of them enough to have to mow around a sign in the first place. Plus then strangers may be honking their horns, bored high school kids will steal them for shits and giggles, or worst yet I'd have to turn down signs from other members of a political party. Just because I might like one enough to put a sign in my yard, I may not feel as strong about other members of that political party. "Sorry, I like you, but I don't like like you" would just feel weird to say to a politician.

I was going to put up a sign for one of the candidates for County Clerk. After all she is a friend of mine, very qualified for the job and a great all around person. But, I know the other lady too. She's also pretty nice and I wouldn't want to hurt her feelings.

Sad thing is, yard signs sometimes work too well. One of my neighbors is works for a town a few towns away. She grew up in that area and knows many people. Years ago she was at the cafe down the street from her office. There was recently an election. An old farmer walked in and sat with another old farmer to have some coffee. One farmer said to the other "I bet you're glad the Sheriff was re-elected." The other replied "Yeah, especially since I voted for the other guy." The first farmer said "Voted for the other guy? Why would you do that? I thought last week you said you were going to vote for the Sheriff?" The other farmer explained "I was planning on it, but my neighbor had his sign in his yard, and I'm not going to vote the same as THAT asshole!"  My neighbor swears this is a true story and I have no reason to doubt her.

It's too late now, but I think I might fill my yard with signs next year, and I mean fill it. Hundreds of them stretching from the road ditch to my front door, from the one edge of my yard to the other. But they won't be for the candidates for the two main parties, or candidates currently running for office, or for that matter candidates that represent my area. I would like to fill my yard with signs from independent or third party candidate from out of state and if possible, from election campaigns from the past. Just to throw people off.

If would you, please do me a favor. The next time you clean out your garage and find some old campaign signs, send them my way. I don't care if their for one of the main parties or a independent. I don't care if they're from someone running for President, Senate, Governor, City Council or School Board. The older and from farther away from me the better. I want my yard filled with names nobody in my area knows. I want the guy in the little bumper sticker covered car stopped and shrug his shoulders in utter confusion.

One last thing, can we please make an effort take the signs down after the election promptly? I will give the people in my area threes days to celebrate or mourn the election results. If the signs remain out Friday night, I'm putting out a no questions asked bounty for them. I'll get a start on my display for the next election.


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