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Fear and Loathing in Honolulu

October 24, 2008

One day, not long after I started working where I now, still, work, we got a new neighbor next door of our office. It was Panos Prevedouros, the Greek professor of engineering at U of H, and self-proclaimed voice of the people in the race for Honolulu mayorship. Having the campaign headquarters of a minor local celeb one door over provided a few moments of diversionary office chat, but the excitement – scant though it was – was to be shortlived. Panos was a one-issue pony who had jumped into the race to give greater voice to the anti-rail movement. And after a meek showing in the election, the shutters began to go back up on the place.

Until, that is, about a month ago.

When someone much more exciting – and allegedly erratic – also decided that a narrow, little-traveled road between some warehouses and auto body shops is the perfect place to erect a campaign headquarters. That someone is none other than the Maverick, Senator John McCain.

Yes, we’ve taken a big step up in the world from the days of Panos for Progress. We now proudly share a wall with the campaign of McCain/Palin Country First.

From the outside the place seemed to be a hive of electric inactivity, and after a few weeks of sheer boredom in the officeplace, I could no longer resist the urge to see if there was a place on the block more inert than where I park my keester from 8 to 5. I would transform myself into a modern day Raoul Duke, and head straight into the heart of the American dream… during my lunch break, of course.

If I had harbored any doubts as to the seriousness the McCain camp’s efforts in Hawaii, they were washed away entirely when I strolled in nonchalantly the day after the final debate to find three folks sitting lazily around a table covered with a red and white checked table cloth munching on catered food. The closest one, a noble-looking rotundish lady with horn-rimmed glasses, acknowledged my presence with an offering of food. “We’re catching up on the debate, didn’t see it last night.” Soo… you are a campaign staffer and you didn’t bother to watch the debates. Hmm. I mentioned casually, off-handedly even, that I am actually a supporter of the other camp, but curiosity just led me right in here… I trailed off, waiting for the pitch, the inquisition, the tirade. Nothing. “Do you mind if I take some promotional literature?” Sure, go ahead. She returned to her food and catching up on the debate.

So ended my savage journey in a tidal wave of anticlimax. The most interesting thing I noted was a King-Kong-size cutout of John McCain taking up one whole wall.

They may not have gotten my vote on that day, but that’s ok. I’m already throwing my support behind the only candidate worth backing: The Admiral himself.

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