|Lately, it seems, I've spent more time in the car than writing.|
My biggest problem is I have far more ideas for Not Now Silly articles than I have time to write. I also seem to have less time to write. F'rinstance, usually I start crafting Unpacking The Writer around the 15th of the month. Then, over the next 5-6 days I come back to it from time to time and add and subtract a paragraph here, or there. I don't really work on it as much as let it evolve slowly. However, this month's Unpacking The Writer will be started, and finished, on the same day. I'm jammed for time. That's why I'm going to quote a long thing I already posted on the facebookery. You can skip right to it, if you are so inclined.
For those who are still with me: I continue to research one particular Coconut Grove story. As I collate my research and write up what's already known, I'm still awaiting some replies to a few outstanding emails which now appear lost in the cyber spaces between here and there. I can't imagine why [allegedly] corrupt Miami Commissioner Marc D. Sarnoff has yet to reply. I suppose it's time to give him a gentle nudge that his constituents are still looking for answers.
Speaking of Sarnoff, his wife Teresa made it official: She's running to replace him in District Two because he's term-limited and they believe in political dynasties. She's never shown an inkling for public office until recently. That's when her [allegedly] corrupt husband realized they'd have to get off the government gravy train -- and the fat skimmed off the gravy -- once he had to go back to being just a simple country bumpkin lawyer.
Not Now Silly has never directly engaged in a political campaign before. However, this year the stakes are too great to just sit back and let events take their course. This is the year the Not Now Silly throws its editorial staff into the Miami District Two Commissioner race. Miami District Two is where West Grove sits, where The Colour Line exists, where Trolleygate and Soilgate are still unresolved issues. After 6 years of researching and writing about Coconut Grove, I can tell you without fear of contradiction that this community -- also known as Black Grove -- has gotten the short end of the stick for the last 125 years. That's why the Newsroom is jumping into the fray.
To that end the Newsroom launched a page on the facebookery: ABT - Anybody But Teresa. The official position of this vast media enterprise is that even Rob Ford would be a better candidate for District Two than Teresa Sarnoff. Is it too early to put the "[allegedly] corrupt" in front of her name? Or, far too late?
Also running in District Two is Mike Simpson, a gent I've never met and am slowly learning about; Rosa Palomino, who helped host me on Miami After Dark to talk about the E.W.F. Stirrup House; and Grace Solares, which leads to a funny story.
|Arriving at Grand Central Park at sunset, |
after driving 35 miles in rush hour traffic.
I have to say I am VERY unimpressed with the Grace Solares campaign for Commissioner in Miami's District Two. I went to her OFFICIAL CAMPAIGN KICKOFF tonight. Here is my report:While on the twin topics of Elections and The Facebookery, have i mentioned I'm running for political office? Join Westerfield/Lengyl 2016 and see what all the bribing is about.
I learned of the Grace Solares 2015 campaign kickoff from a posting on Facebook. Since she's a community activist, I thought I'd see what a community activist sounds like on the campaign trail. I even sent a facebook message to the campaign earlier in the day to say I'd be there.
I arrived about 20 minutes early and a guy introduced himself to me (and I promptly forgot his name). I introduced myself back to him. He asked if I had met Grace before. I said, "No, but the more important question is. 'Where's the washroom?' "
Keep in mind I had just driven 35 miles on a tank of coffee.
After I took care of the important business I went to the back of the campaign room (in the Grand Central nightclub), set up my camera and tripod and sat down to wait.
A guy came up to me and asked if I was taking video or stills.
"Stills, but what difference would it make?"
"None, but I'm the tech and need to know."
Well, that made absolutely no sense at all. But, surprisingly, it made far more sense than what followed.
Right at the stroke of 6PM a very large security guard came up to me and asked to see my invitation. This is our approximate conversation:
"Yes, this is an invitation only event."
"I read about it on facebook. It was announced on facebook. How is it invitation only?
"I don't know, but you need an invitation."
"I'm with the media."
"I don't care. You need an invitation."
"Okay. Just give me a minute to pack up my stuff."
So, as I'm packing up my stuff I keep talking to him. "Look, I drove 35 miles to get here to cover this. Is there someone I can talk to?"
"You can talk to anybody you want...after you leave."
"How is that going to help me? I just want to talk to someone from the campaign."
"You can talk to them outside."
I got all my stuff packed up and picked up my knapsack to leave when another, even bigger, security guard showed up and blocked my way. He leaned over and whispered something in the first security guard's ear.
That's when the first security guard said to me, "It's okay. You can stay."
"I can stay?"
"Yes, you can stay."
"Without an invite?"
"Without an invite."
"Can you tell me who threw me out and then who changed their mind and allowed me to stay?"
He smiled a big shit-eating grin and said, "You know I can't tell you that." Then he left me alone.
So . . . I set up my tripod all over again and put the camera back on it and waited. As I waited I realized that this was going to be, essentially, a cocktail party and Grace Solares would be moving around the room, glad-handing her backers. I presumed she'd give some remarks at the end. So, I settled in for the long, boring wait to hear her speechifying.
After about 20 minutes another guy came up to me. He was dressed in a sports jacket and was one of the few people already there when I arrived, so I suspected he was with the Solares campaign. He said HELLO and then asked, "Who are you and who are you with?" There was an edge to his question that rubbed me the wrong way.
Normally "Who are you and who are you with?" is a perfectly legitimate question under these circumstances. However, what I had just gone through with the security guard already had me on edge.
So I said, "Who's wants to know?"
He said, "The guy who's asking you who you are and who you're with!"
I stood up and started to take apart my tripod all over again.
"I'm the guy who is leaving right now."
And, I walked out without meeting the candiate, without hearing her speech, without learning what makes her qualified for running for Commissioner in District Two.
Here's the punchline: As I left the building the first security guard was outside, checking people as they came in. A couple arrived and the guard said, "For the Commissioner?" They said, "Yes" and the guard ushered them right in WITHOUT ASKING FOR THEIR INVITATION.
So, while I'm telling people I was thrown out of Grace Solares' campaign event, the gospel truth is I threw myself out.
Last facebook plug: Now that I've unilaterally declared victory in The Johnny Dollar Wars, I'm pondering a name-change for The Johnny Dollar Depreciation Society. Drop on over and let me know what suggestions you may have. I've been pondering variations of frases [see what I did there?] of words that all start with the letter "F" because of the alliteration of the Friday Fox Follies I write every ... err ... Friday for PoliticusUSA. May as well tie into that. I think they call that synergy these days, or is it vertical integration?
And, that's how I can start a post and publish it on the very same day. See you next month, kids.
* It was not Brad Knoefler who approached me. I only know him from the pictures people sent to ask, "Whuzzit this guy?" Nor was it any of the other people whose pics were sent to me.