The end of the trail

Most candidates have the same things in common when running for office.

Like George Thronas Jr. they will take their message door-to-door and run the risk of getting bitten by the owner’s dog, or, like Rhoda Libre they are smashed with a hectic life working dawn til’ dusk attending one advisory meeting here and one regulatory board there having little time to walk through the neighborhoods.

A candidate might quickly discover as Thronas did, that being a fresh candidate on the campaign trail suddenly thrusts you into a public arena, where a total stranger will approach and shake your hand thanking you wanting to represent the community.

Another commonality might be discovering that the various opinions of other candidates equate to one’s own. So how does one candidate distinguish himself or herself from the rest of political run-as-wells?

A new candidate will quickly discover one more commonality that stands ahead like a road block on the trail to office.

Raising campaign funds.

In the case of Rhoda Libre, a single mom who works long hours and has been referred to as a “Renaissance Woman” and “Tree-hugger” her opportunity to share her views and stand out among the rest came at the recent Kaua‘i County Council Candidate’s Forum.

Both Libre and Thronas were two of 14 who were able to express their views live and on-air without laying out a lump of campaign funds. They learned a valuable lesson in frugal funding. George came up with his own simple, but creative method of voter velcro. He handed out a package of Ramen Noodles with  every pack of campaign materials. A clever low-budget way of connecting to the voter. While Aunty cooks her noodles she thanks the candidate and later will sit in front her t.v. grumbling about all the annoying political advertisements.

When asked about how they felt in general about their campaign, the common response will be, “Oh, I think it went well”.

Both Libre and Thronas Jr. felt good about the efforts of their supporting family and friends. They each felt they learned a great deal from the experience on the trail.

And that is where the similarity ends.

He will be celebrating his race with family and friends up at his family’s home in Wailua Homesteads.

She will be celebrating the run and watching returns with family and friends out at Deusenberg Farms up in Waimea Valley.

She will be wearing a purple bikini top with a bolo knife tied to her lava-lava and rubber boots.

This is what you wear in the taro patch while cutting back the tall grass at the end of the campaign trail.


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