“Slow Down, You’ll Hit a Moose” is playing and my head is swaying. It’s the official song for my virtual (only in my imagination) campaign for governor, and it’s performed by Stan Keach and the Sandy River Ramblers (from their “Cry of the Loon” CD).
For those who are coming to the campaign late, you won’t find me on the ballot, won’t see me in foolish 30-second TV ads, won’t have to send me a contribution. So far, so good, right?
I shall try to be funny — because the others will be deadly serious — and we sure do need some laughter at the Capitol. My campaign is all about having fun — and we’ll try to spread some of this to the other campaigns. In the process, perhaps we’ll learn some valuable things about Paul, Mike and Eliot. Yes, we’re going to keep this on a friendly first-name basis.
With the help of readers, we’ve decided that I’m running as a candidate of the Bull Moose Party, and my slogan is, “I can’t do any worse.” Some of you will definitely disagree with that.
We’re also working on a fall event, and your ideas for that are welcomed. But today, it’s time to get to work on our candidate survey — designed to help us learn a lot about each of the candidates, using humor. I hope to get this to Paul, Mike and Eliot by the end of this month. And I really need your help. Here are some of the survey questions we’re considering.
• Have you ever made fun of yourself? Tell us about it. Question: What is the oddest time you were at L.L. Bean?
• Which of the following is the best bet to boost the economy? Choices: More Walmarts; Focus on recruiting huge new businesses; Get rid of unions; Sell all our pulp to China so we can have cheaper toilet paper; Increase the minimum wage; Other (your best bet).
• Which of the following should be Maine’s state slogan? Choices: The Maine Thing; Maine the way life should be; Maine is open for business; Maine, gone but not forgotten; Maine, more trees than people; Kiss our butts; Other (your best slogan).
• While we’re on the subject of state designations, please tell us what you would choose for the following: State suppah, State meal, State beer, State export, State secret, State work of art, State retail store, State sport, State shopping mall, State liquor store, State farm animal and State author (did I tell you about my new book?).
• Define “making do.” And tell us how you personally make do in Maine.
• Which of the following should be on our license plates: Photo of the governor; Black fly; Whoopie pie; Empty factory; Other (your best idea).
• Where is your favorite Maine place and why? What is your favorite Maine book and why? What is your favorite Maine food and restaurant? What is your favorite Maine product? What is your favorite Maine pub? What is your favorite Maine beer? Where is your favorite Maine vacation spot? Do you read a Maine newspaper every day? (Which one?). What is your favorite L.L. Bean product? What is your favorite Maine fish? What is your favorite Maine TV show (did I tell you about the TV show I cohost called “Wildfire”?)
• Have you ever climbed Mount Katahdin? Rafted a Maine river? Been to Lubec? Eaten bear meat? Shopped in North Conway? Shopped at the Portsmouth liquor store? Had a yard sale? Been to a bean supper? Shopped at a farmers market (where?).
• What is Maine’s worst invasive species? Choices: Dandelions; Lupines; Smallmouth bass; Wild turkeys; People from Massachusetts; Other.
• What is the best thing we can do to protect the Maine we love? Choices: Blow up the Kittery bridge; Give Cumberland and York counties to New Hampshire; Allow only native Mainers to vote; Eliminate welfare and ship recipients to Florida; Other.
OK, dear readers, it’s your turn now. You can add possible answers for these questions, or create entirely new questions. Email them to me at [email protected], or mail them to 34 Blake Hill Road, Mount Vernon, ME 04352. And please do it soon, so we can get our survey into the hands of Paul, Mike and Eliot.
And if you really want to have some fun, answer the questions I’ve posed above and send me your answers. Maybe we can turn those into our next campaign column.