Entry 276: Why I May Soon Run for Office

It’s the height of the election season, and judging from what I’ve seen from our local candidates, I have two of the three qualifications necessary to run for office:signs

  1. The phone number of a company that manufactures lawn signs.
  2. Lots of endorsements.

Oh, yes, I have endorsements coming out of my ears. And I’m constantly getting new ones. They pour in so quickly I can’t issue press releases fast enough.

It would be difficult to keep track of all my endorsements if not for the convenient emails I receive on a nearly daily basis from Linkedin. “Congratulations!” the emails say. “Your connection So-and-so has endorsed you for the following skills and expertise.”

linkedin_logo_11[1]And sometimes (but not always), the skills and expertise So-and-so has endorsed me for are ones that I actually have.

The emails from Linkedin always have a “continue” button, which I always click on, even though I may or may not have the skills and expertise So-and-so has endorsed me for, because I’m never sure So-and-so’s endorsement of my possibly existent skills will stick if I don’t click on the button.

Sometimes I don’t even know who So-and-so is. He may be a connection of a connection of a connection, or someone who introduced himself on a conference call five years ago, or someone who has me confused with somebody else, which would explain why he has endorsed me for carpentry skills.

When I click on “continue,” I myself am offered the opportunity to endorse some people, many of whom look vaguely familiar. But, honestly, I usually endorse them anyway, because, really, why the hell not, and what if it somehow got back to them that I withheld my valuable endorsement?

They might unendorse me!

And so it goes–a kind of endorsement chain letter.

All of which begs the question: if you have to be prompted to give an endorsement…if it’s easier to give one than not to…if endorsements and connections are tossed around more casually than Miley Cyrus’s tush…

…how meaningful are they?

That’s why Linkedin has become less like a networking tool and more like Facebook, only more annoying. At least Facebook doesn’t send me an email every time somebody’s status changes. “So-and-so has uploaded a new profile picture,” Linkedin tells me. Well, gee, let me stop what I’m doing (probably not much) and go see that new photo immediately, because if they uploaded a new profile picture, it must be a really good–OMG–what the hell did the old profile picture look like?sign

In any case, you can rest easy. Because even though I’m steeped in connections and endorsements, and even though I’ve designed a lawn sign that really makes me stand apart from the other candidates, I don’t have the third thing necessary to run for office in the New York Metropolitan area.

A scandal.*

See you soon.

130723-weiner-2-3p.380;380;7;70;0[1]*In New York alone, over the past seven years, 32 state officeholders have been convicted of a crime, censured or otherwise accused of wrongdoing, according to the New York Public Interest Research Group. That doesn’t even include Anthony Weiner (press photo at left), who’s not on the list because he wasn’t a state official. Still, that record is preferable to what we get from our representatives in Washington. I mean, at least these people did something.

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