Friday, October 02, 2015

Me? I just want to walk the parade route tomorrow.


I just want to walk the parade route tomorrow, because that’s what walkability is all about.

It's about walking.

As of Friday morning, walking the parade route is an option being denied me. I hope this changes.

Before I explain this in greater detail, know that I’m sticking with my 2015 resolution not to re-ignite the annual controversy over Harvest Homecoming, New Albany’s annual autumnal civic festival, best known for its “booth days,” when downtown is given over to a temporary street festival format.

I can compromise on my own two feet, thank you.

I just want to walk the parade route tomorrow.

The usual arguments about Harvest Homecoming, pro and con, have been hashed and rehashed. Revolutions of rising expectations are never easy. In the absence of principled municipal governance, nothing’s going to substantively change any time soon, and yet I’m satisfied that a younger generation of Harvest Homecoming’s management truly grasps the need for evolution and accommodation.

Reform is a process, and while painfully slow, there is movement on some fronts. Let’s accept progress in this process, and celebrate this fact.

As for me, I just want to walk the parade route tomorrow.

I’m especially grateful to Art Niemeier, who joined the group effort planning tomorrow’s Biers on Parade at the Farmer Market, and has been invaluable. I don’t want to say or do anything that might compromise my gratitude to Art. We’re in possession of an idea (parade day festivities) with significant future promise, one uniting multiple entities. It's a good thing, indeed.

And me?

I just want to walk the parade route tomorrow, because walking is the basic form of human movement.

It comes down to this: As written, Harvest Homecoming’s parade rules do not explicitly acknowledge the possibility that an independent political candidate might participate.

There is a clause restricting the use of convertibles to current office holders, and another confining non-office-holding candidates to their political party’s respective floats.

I hold no office, and I have no party.

Given that I’m probably the foremost local proponent of walkability, I just want to walk the parade route tomorrow.

First I was asked by the committee if it could provide a vehicle, and I said thanks, but no thanks.

The walkability guy in a truck? It doesn’t make sense.

In the beginning, all I wanted to do is walk the parade route tomorrow with a group of supporters. Just walk down the street, nothing more, while making the point that it isn’t unusual to walk.

Because it isn’t.

Except when you’re told it cannot be allowed.

At some point during the past months, it was mentioned that perhaps bicycles could be included, though while it would be nice to have bikes represented, actually riding one in a slow-moving parade doesn't compute, although if the idea helped move the negotiation, I thought it acceptable to at least consider pushing a bike.

Although what I’d like to do is just walk the parade route.

As of yesterday, the committee is holding to its interpretation of rules that aren’t explicit in the first place, and has offered this ruling: I can’t walk, because candidates for office must use a wheeled vehicle, and if I choose to ride a bicycle, which is suitably wheeled, there can be only five bikes total.

Have I mentioned that nowhere in the committee’s rules is this wheeled clause mentioned?


I just want to walk the parade route.

I’ll walk alone, if that helps.

As the candidate of walkability, all I want to do is walk the Harvest Homecoming parade route.

Granted, irony never plays well here, but note that at a time when walkability is one of downtown’s best hopes for continued regeneration, the Harvest Homecoming theme in 2015 is Hot Rod Harvest.

Please, can I just walk the parade route and illustrate that life in this city can be about people, and not just their cars?

All I want to do is walk the parade route tomorrow, just me alone.

Surely this isn't an imposition.

Thanks for your consideration.


Not Roger said...

Roger, walkability is a very important topic. All can probably agree to this statement. It is a natural human movement. A bowl-movement is also another natural human movement. My suggestion to you is this: Rent a port-a-pot, put it on a float then ride in the port-a-pot. The festival is not about you and your political toddler temper-tantrums. I will say that most politicians can have those same temper-tantrums but tend to not boast about them on social media. What you need to focus on is the positive, be a ruler follower then people will like you. You see if you do not abide by the rules, agreements, or suggestions by those whom have the power you will look like, well an ass. You need to think about the people who are not current Roger fans and how you can gain their trust. I would say bashing a parade is probably not the best way to do that. I am an avid Harvest Homecoming supporter and have been since I moved to this little town on the river almost 20 years ago, I enjoy seeing old friends, and making new ones. I feel that you need to focus on the positive, after all most of the people who agree with clean living, walkability, and a change in government are positive. Try to broaden your horizons a bit please. I am finished reading your blog about a festival. Try some new material. And on a side note I was thinking you would be a good candidate which is why I began following your blog in the first place ~Roger

The New Albanian said...

Thanks for your comment. Seriously. As I stated here, I see a younger generation of HHers understanding how things are evolving. It's very hopeful for the future. The restaurant association has had an excellent partnership with HH this year. In the future, it should continue to grow.

ecology warrior said...

Walk the route but on the sidewalk since the HH Committee seem to think they have some kind of temporary Jurisdiction over a citizen's right to walk on a public street, and by the by Governor Orr once walked part of the parade route so why cant you?

David Kahl said...

Last I checked, the NA Marching Band also walked the route. Maybe you could hold a trombone and walk.

ecology warrior said...

maybe a shriners hat

w&la said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The New Albanian said...

David: This whole absurd walking vs. non-walking distinction applies only to political candidates. Others are free to walk as they please.

w&la said...

Sorry - I misunderstood - only the Mayor in New Albany is allowed to ride in his own car among the candidates for New Albany Mayor.

The New Albanian said...

Only an elected official currently in office can ride in a convertible.

I know, I know ... bizarre.