"I am indebted to no man, and only to one woman — my dear wife — as I begin this very difficult job" - President Ford
Six years ago, Todd Smith (my neighbor around-the-block) said he was going to run for mayor. My wife and I cast votes for him, and he won by three votes. He anticipated a mass exodus from the council, and I told him, "If you run out of better folk to fill the vacancies, you can give me a call."
A year later - in March 2008, he did give me that call, and in April 2008, I took the oath of office, filling a seat on the Severance City Council. We talked politics, tried to do things differently...and in the end both of us saw the darker side of politics. Both of us handed in our resignations (for different reasons), and took a back seat.
Todd and I had a few other conversations - I had the privilege of telling him that he'd been written in to the mayor's seat for his third term in 2011. But, our friendship was strained by the politics...he was tired of it all. And, having little in common besides politics, we haven't spoken much since.
He did wish me well in the 2013 election, "make sure you draw the right straw".
It's unlikely, but I've made it clear that if I ever become mayor, and if I then have to fill a vacancy on the council, my first call will be to Todd. A favor I might never be able to repay...but I wish I could.
The style and etiquette manuals state that the mayor of a city is entitled to the title "The Honorable." And although some people use that term derisively, I respect the men who have taken on the heavy responsibility of leading our town.
Here's to the Honorable Todd Smith, thrice elected to the mayor's chair in Severance, KS.