We did the impossible!!!!!
I went into yesterday’s Board of County Commissioners meeting with doubt. My wife Jennifer, my friend Mr. Gene and I had lunch to help prepare us for the long night ahead of us. We talked briefly about what we were planning to take about but the majority of the time, we just enjoyed the food and enjoyed each other’s company. Running late, we headed downtown which took no time but it was already past 3pm which I felt certain, the lines would be humongous. They weren’t. My wife got number 11, I was 12 and Mr. Gene 13. As we waited for the meeting to begin, the already gathered crowd was small and didn’t grow. We were seated shortly before the meeting occurred and then the crowds started to come in to fill up the auditorium. Having prepared the night before on the seating arrangement for the commissioners and the mayor, I quickly realized how small the auditorium felt. I was literally a stone’s throw away from the mayor. (I wish I had a stone!)
As the meeting progressed, our time to speak would be almost 2 hours later. My wife, my friend and I went up to speak. My wife having written her speech many times over, delivered a clear and succinct speech. Standing next to her, I looked at her at the monitor in front of us. If she thought she was nervous, this never came across in the video. The next morning, I heard my wife on NPR on my way to work as the took an audio snippet from her speech. My friend, Mr. Gene went after me. He admitted before the speech that preparing for those minutes were hard. As much research he did, the angrier he got but still the thoughts were not as congealed during his speech. Still, he did make some key points where I believe on of the commissioners later re-iterated after the public hearing was over. As for me… the emotions got the better of me.
With the preparation from the night before, my 6 mile run on the morning off, I felt confident that what I was going to say was going to be good. I didn’t realize how much. Since I had practice delivering my speech for two minutes, I was relived to hear that three minutes would be given to all who spoke. The pauses and delibrate slower pace help me greatly but this also made my cry through out the speak. The second line of my speech is what got me started. I had said that two years ago, I had a conversation with my daughter about the layoff. From that moment on, I was falling apart on the inside. This was the last thing I wanted to do because I was angry being there before the commissioners but I could not convey this. Still, I think my points were well received.
After we were done, we left to go home. We kidded about needing a drink but we opted to go to Swenson’s for some ice cream. I opted for a banana split. I had my wife take this picture below with me holding the Save Our Library sticker. While we waited for our just desserts, the music that was playing overhead was Michael Jackson’s Man in the Mirror. The song was near the end but Michael was with the chorus – make that change and man in the mirror lines over and over again. Those lyrics spoke to me and i started to whelm up again. I covered this up by rubbing my eyes so my wife and friend did not see this. We were emotional spent at that point and i did not want to start a cry-fest.
After desserts were done, we head home. My wife and I started to go to bed as soon as we got home. Little did I realize that the Commissioners meeting was still going on. I for one did not think that what I or anyone else said mattered. This morning, I woke up to a miracle.
The library got a 1 year reprieve but only using the last of the reserves. We fought the good fight but the battle still goes on. It’s not over folks.
~ by The Monster on September 11, 2013.