Byline Burton |

Byline Burton

Midway through the Carbondale trustee forum Monday night it was apparent. The real questions, the real questions real people want to know, were really not being asked.Nobody asked the nine candidates:-“What kind of car do you drive?”-“What’s your favorite part of Mountain Fair?”The answers to these questions could give some insights. For example, a candidate who bombs around town in a $70,000 Humvee might not share the same environmental views as someone who pedals around on a bike. Plus, we’re just curious what candidates drive, even though it’s an impolite question to ask of anyone.If someone answered, “Judging pies” to the Mountain Fair question, it probably indicates a long-time connection to the community, and a propensity for dressing up funny in public, which is always a good quality for an elected official.Leading questions, such as “You do agree that disco still sucks,” are OK. Anyone who answers, “But I like disco,” shouldn’t be living in Carbondale, so how can they represent anyone? Leading questions are OK, because as the hippie bumper stickers say, “When the people lead, the leaders will follow.” Anyway, here are some more questions that might be put to Carbondale candidates as the election season rolls on.-Do you enjoy watching yourself on TV, and will you flash subliminal messages to the audience as a way to earn a few extra bucks?-When was the last time you discharged a firearm?-Along the same lines, should the proposed recreation center have an indoor skeet range, or just some place for deer hunters to sight in their rifles?-Do you promise never to say in public, “The reason we all moved here.” If you feel compelled to make this observation, will you rephrase it to, “The reason I moved here.”-Do you consider yourself a Machiavellian, or do you think Michelin makes the better tire?-Do you swear on every Bible and Chairman Mao’s Little Red Book that Carbondale Town Hall will never install an automated telephone answering system?-As part of the town’s economic development effort, wouldn’t it be great to block off Main Street and hold NHRA sanctioned drag races on Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, and Labor Day? You get five extra points if you know Big Daddy Don Garlitz’s nickname.-The dandelion is Carbondale’s official town flower, but the town does not yet have an official town dance. Should it be the funky chicken, boogaloo or ‘gator?-In the spirit of the Old West, will you reintroduce the spittoon to the Town Hall and learn how to properly use it?-Will you keep the soft drinks in the Pepsi machine in Town Hall at 50 cents or commission a study to see how much other towns of equal size charge for their drinks?-What is your most embarrassing moment, and did it have anything to do with representing Carbondale while others looked on in horror?-Do you prefer the regular fries, or seasoned fries, at the Pour House?-Do you know where the sewer plant is, and how it got there? (Hint: It wasn’t Bailey House Movers).-Do you promise never to say in public, “The property taxes are so low here. You should see what they are in New Jersey.” (Clue: This ain’t New Jersey).-Should trustees be forced to say the Pledge of Allegiance before each meeting, like some other local elected boards?-What do you think of the phrase, “Act globally, think locally, and hope it doesn’t all come down during our lifetimes.”-How many more years do you think we got? 10? 20? 25 max?-Do you promise never to say at a trustees meeting, “I just want to reiterate what so and so said” then spend 10 minutes doing just that.-Do you leave your front door unlocked and if not, where do you hide a key?-Are you capable of thinking outside the box, or will you bring one to all the trustee meetings?-The disturbing-the-peace ordinance should include cell phones that go off in public places, right?-When is it appropriate to refer to other trustees as, “Addle-brained, no account, trough-sucking, back-stabbing weasels.”Lynn Burton is a Glenwood Springs Post Independent reporter who has covered Carbondale off and on since 1983.

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