Chugging the old Explorer up and down Lowell Boulevard, between West 34th to 44th and back (a run to Safeway), blue and white yard signs sprung overnight; lugubrious sprouts sadly skewing the charm of bloom’d tulips and blue bells, croci and volunteers (a weed by any other name… But still green.). The incipient rise of political grunge–“Rick Garcia for Denver!”–dulled the promise of spring.
Remembering the absurd prolificacy of yard garbage that cluttered Lowell Boulevard about this time four years ago–every other house on the boulevard brandishing, (if not lewd, at least good for a chuckle), the unlikely moniker, “Timber Dick”–the sole saving grace of Garcia’s yard blight was that it wasn’t as prolific.
There is, of course, the inevitable question why a candidate, any candidate, for reelection to city council who is unopposed, except for the possibility of write-ins, would, firstly, grub for big bucks for their campaign and, secondly, spend a substantial portion of the fruit of that grubbing on yard signs? Surely, there were lessons learned from the Dick? I mean, ol’ Timber’s unsightly festoon of eight out of every ten West Highland front yards with the unavoidably subliminal winky-wink, Timber Dick message, (something like the Washington monument; an icon to phallic prowess that speaks to a kind of “Get ‘er done!” mentality–the Father of Our Country, and all that…), apparently helped not a whit in his run for council.
Quoting from Garcia (this morning’s Rocky Mountain News), “Obviously, my objective is to continue to raise money because I have to get my message out to constituents about what I’ve accomplished for them and what I intend to accomplish for them in my next term. There’s still dollars to be spent for a campaign consultant and mail pieces and all the expenses that are associated with running a campaign.”
Ah, the shameless gluttony of politics.
Would that Garcia would brave a new course. Would that the tiresome tradition of getting the message out, consultants, mailings, yard signs be abandoned. Would that all that cash–he is running unopposed, for heaven’s sake–be creatively redirected to repaving the measly path through Highland Park; cleaning the garbage–paper cups, sacks, Frito bags, beer bottles, soiled diapers, tin foil (the leavings of sub-human gutterscum), from Berkeley and Rocky Mountain Park lakes. Would that all that cash be offered-up to begin the remediation of the disgustingly neglected repair and replacement of irrigation systems in Northwest Denver’s parks. Would that all that cash be infused into the removal of the ever proliferating menace of graffiti on our side of town. Would that that cash find its way to recreation centers, where the friction of time has worn rough the essential worth of those facilities.
Yup, I dream. And, dreamily I end this portentous piece with a distant memory of one of former Mayor Bill McNichols Jr. observations about a particular political opponent: “He’s so full of shit, that it runs outa both sides of his mouth!” The ever-present cigar rolling from one side of his mouth to the other; the Irish glint shining from his eyes; his chuckle infectious.