Friends… please allow me to share what it is like to campaign four hours a day. Six or seven days a week.
Campaigning on my bike is usually exhilarating and relaxing. I enjoy rolling up to front doors… chatting for a few minutes (sometimes longer depending on the concerns of the homeowner). Each visit can vary… talking about:
1. Attleboro schools, class sizes, need for more counselors, the gym floors that will be fixed at Hill Roberts and Hyman-Fine Elementary Schools.
2. Roads, potholes, sidewalks, a busted curb, speeding traffic, etc. This is one of the major issues that residents seem to have.
3. Rising property taxes, especially among senior citizens concerned about their economic future. I talk about senior programs, the work-off program that saves $600 a year, a break on taxes if their income is low, ideas that might help if they are unable to fully pay their quarterly taxes. Everyone is adjusting their financial plans to help pay for the new high school. I find most, but not all, agree with the need for the new high school…. but it isn’t easy to afford it. I also talk about the senior center, health insurance, help with income tax prep. Some seniors don’t know what is available for them through the senior center.
4. Neighborhood issues: run down local homes or vacant buildings that should be torn down.
5. The need for downtown Attleboro revitalization, parking, new businesses, beautification.
6. Our library needs help…. and we will be fixing the roof, windows, heating and cooling systems. The library is NOT MOVING. It is an historic, beautiful old building and I plan to help save it.
7. The need for civility in our politics. We can disagree but need to be respectful of one another. I am proud to say the City Council is a civil body of citizen legislators. We aren’t perfect but we really try to respect one another and serve our citizens.
I wish I was writing more at night about these issues… and I will try. Please understand that campaigning is ultimately tiring…. after 4-5 hours knocking on doors my body and mind begin to shut down. When I notice my mind cloud over…. it’s time to call it a day. Jan (my lovely wife) eventually calls my cell to tell me what we’re having for dinner and asks if I had a good day.
I remember hearing about a congressman who always came home for dinner. That was his most important goal of the day. Same with me. I join Jan and my dog (Chloey) around 6 pm, hug Jan and pat our pooch…. and unwind. I fall asleep in front of the TV by 8 or 9 pm…. wake up at midnite and head off to bed. Get a blessed sleep. Arise around 8:30 am and get ready for another day on the Trail. My goal is to reach all 16,000 potential voters…. (not everyone seems to vote). I won’t reach that goal… but I can dream… I can try.
On rainy days or when putting up signs, John Corrigan joins me on the Trail. Some of you might have met John, a true friend. On those days I actually drive up to homes…. which allows my body to recover and get ready to hop on my bike again.
I love campaigning…. but forgive me if I get tired after 4-5. I’ve lost ten pounds and am in better shape. But I do need my rest at some point.
Please call me at 508-577-1412 if I haven’t knocked on your door yet….. I’d love to meet you and listen to your thoughts.