Thursday, September 27, 2007


So, it's still post-primary fun time and the papers are full of quotes from candidates and ex-candidates. Confusing, baffling quotes.

Honestly, I don't know if I've just finally fried one too many brain cells or what, but there's a whole bunch of stuff in the papers that I just can't wrap my head around. I assume the statements mean something, mostly because they're in the paper. Why would the paper print stuff that doesn't mean anything?

Anyway, let me give you some examples...

I first noticed this trend yesterday, in the Telegram article about the primary. They had some quotes from Dionne that just seemed baffling:
Mr. Dionne said he is considering not running for a political office again after what he calls a “disastrous” result.

“I’m not even going to make an attempt anymore,” he said.
What the hell? Did he even really make an attempt this year? Did he actually expect to get more than 36 votes? I mean, it's not like he raised any money or did any real campaigning or anything. Did he just expect people to vote for him because of his awesome goatee?

Then he got all brimstone and hellfire!
“Everything is following the path happening over the past years,” he said. “Destruction is what they are looking for, and it’s going to happen, too. I can see it happening. It’s a path to destruction.”
Oh my goodness!

I thought Dionne just ran for fun! He was the nice guy who didn't really have a chance but was there to represent the underdog. Now he's prophesied "a path to destruction!" What happened? Where'd the lovable little leprechaun from the debates go?

The next thing that stuck out to me was in this article in the Telegram. Tom Donnelly talks a little about how he's going to focus more on change now. All well and good, totally understandable stuff. But then comes this bit:
“I question changing people without municipal experience versus someone with municipal experience, meaning me,” he said. “I can make change.”
Okay, I understand the last bit: "I can make change." Sure, he sounds sort of like a cashier, but I know what he meant.

It's the first part that's so baffling. I gather he's saying that you can't make change without municipal experience. Or that you should only change to someone with municipal experience. Or something. Is changing to someone with municipal experience even changing? Is what he said even a sentence?

Actually, is he questioning the act of changing people (with changing as a verb), or is he questioning some group of people who are known as "changing people" (with changing as an adjective)? If the latter, who are these "changing people?"

Also, why did he have to put "meaning me" at the end? I understand that he's got "municipal experience," that's not the confusing part! Did someone just forget to put a comma somewhere? Did the reporter understand the quote when it was said and it just translated badly to print? Or did the reporter never understand it in the first place, and if so why print it? Is there a typo? A misquote? Are people speaking in a dialect I don't understand? Am I just an idiot?

My head hurts.

If those were the only confusing things in the paper I'd be okay, but it gets worse.

I was hoping that with DeSalvatore out of the race I wouldn't have to write about him anymore. But he's still making a lot of noise, and he's saying things that confuse me even more than Donnelly did!

From the Sentinel's article entitled DeSalvatore: Loss came from 'character assassination':
DeSalvatore said "information terrorists" called his supporters and spread negative information about him.

"As long as that ultra-liberal sense continues we don't have a chance," he said. "Without a prevailing common sense, the city is done."

At first I quoted the "information terrorists" part mostly because I think it's funny. I thought I understood it and it was just crazy talk, but on further reflection I understand it less and less.

Are phone banks terrorism now? If not, who are these scary terrorists with too much free time on their hands who go around cold-calling people just to badmouth Ted? Why didn't the people who got the calls just hang up? I'd hang up, and I'm no Ted fan! Is it still terrorism if the victim can end it just by hanging up?

But what really baffles me is the "ultra-liberal" thing. Where did that even come from? Is it just the catch-all term conservatives use for anyone or anything they don't like? Is "ultra-liberal sense" something that alerts you to danger, like "Spidey sense"? Except maybe it alerts you to ultra-liberal danger! And how is that in any way connected with the phone terrorists? Or is it just a requirement that whenever you make an attack on liberals you have to mention terrorism too?

And isn't "common sense" by definition "prevailing"? That's what makes it common sense!

Man I'm confused. Or if not me, someone else is.

He also said:
"For those that have been involved in city government: Shame on you for shenanigans and letting things go to hell."
But he's a city councilor! Doesn't that make him "involved in city government"? So he's shaming himself? What the hell is going on here?

I also read a bunch of stuff about Lisa Wong, but she didn't say anything that left me totally confused. I'm trying to be fair to all the candidates and ex-candidates here, so hopefully she'll get confusing really soon.


1970s Abraham Lincoln said...

There are dozens of gems in that Sentinel article. My favorite:

The former teacher and computer technician said in the immediate future he will relax after running a six-month campaign.

Maybe now he'll have time to put together that resume.

Nowoco said...

Let the shenanigans begin! Yesterday I was thinking about the sour grapes this election has grown in the camps of the two councillors and today it's clear that neither can be trusted to speak off-the-cuff. They must be so angry at this outcome, an outcome they could not have prevented, but one which they willfully did not see coming. I predict Donnelly WILL continue his "lifelong Fitchburger" campaign and that Ted will be even more angry, baffled and "hurt" that he is not on the ballot again.

Maybe this will be the push both of them need to actually, you know, talk about real solutions for the city. Can you imagine being rejected by over 3000 people?

fitchburg-shuffle said...

This election has made me giddy! I have candiates in the mayor, ward, and at-large races that I'm supporting. In almost 40 years in this city, I can't remember feeling so strongly about potential city officials!

Thanks Unicow for getting me fired up about November! If feels good to support someone who I feel has the best interests of this city at heart. Spending time over the past few months with these people have renewed my interest in something that I haven't cared about since I first regestered to vote in 88 for Dukakis! I know, bad choice.

I still think of myself as young and these people who I like are younger than me!

Fitchburg's gonna look a lot better come 2008! Nice work voters!

Oh yea, Fuck Ted!

stah said...


I've read your posts for awhile. Your posts border between "interesting" and "entertaining". I'm not sure which! Anyway, I always read it!

Keep up the good work!

The Unicow said...


Glad I could get you fired up! Though some of the credit should go to the unusually good crop of candidates we have this time around. But mostly me, obviously.


That's just what I'm going for. Infotaining! I aspire to be an "infotainment terrorist" one day.

Anyway, glad you guys enjoy my ramblings. Thanks!

The Unicow said...

Wait a second, I turned "interesting" plus "entertaining" into "infotaining"...

That doesn't make any damn sense.

And "interstaining" just sounds gross.


stah said...

Interstaining sounds like the toilet in my old college apartment on a Sunday morning.

ReallyRachel said...

Actually, "infotaining" is perfect. You should copyright the word. Ooops it's already in general usage. Darn! Well, use it in good health and make it your trademark!

Not quite sure how I got crowned Queen of the Infoterrorists considering the fine job you, Sayno and Nowoco and others do, but the Powerchair and I are so flattered.

What say I pass the torch to you creative young men (and women?) and use my superpowers to bring down Hamas! I name thee Unicow, Crown Prince of the Infotainment Terrorists. Able to bring down machobigots with only words and pictures!


By the way, if you run across the sign gremlin I'd like to borrow him for my next mission

Queen CyberRachel

ReallyRachel said...

Shah said ... "Interstaining sounds like the toilet in my old college apartment on a Sunday morning."

Didn't your mother teach you not to eat your books?


Capn' Bad-Ass said...

Rachel! edible books?! Brilliant!!

stah said...

Like anyone reads books in college! There were far more inportant things to do. Books worked as clever props when the people who paid for my education visited. With what I paid for those props, they would turn in to the most expensive meal that I've ever eated.

Dominos worked better.

ReallyRachel said...

Yah, gives new meaning to "voracious reader" and "digesting information" doesn't it?!