In my end is my beginning.
- Mary Stuart, Queen of Scots
What once seemed so abstract grows more concrete each day.
Specifically, 160 more days.
That's when (to crib from another oft-abused politician) we will no longer have Mayor Carty Finkbeiner to kick around anymore.
Yes, an entire city grows misty-eyed at the very thought of waving farewell to a mayor about whom the best thing that we can say is this:
“You know, he really does love this city.”
As if love and good intentions alone should be enough to cancel out any shortcomings.
But we're not here today for any mayoral retrospective.
We're here to look boldly forward.
What does the future hold for Carty Finkbeiner?
We've already listened to a few options in recent months.
First there was Governor Finkbeiner. Remember that?
Yeah, there was Carty, standing on the banks of the Maumee, casting his line down to Columbus and waiting for a nibble. Funny, but in very short order, no one heard much more about that possibility.
Then there was Port Authority Carty.
Just recently, Hizzoner allowed as how - gee, why not? - he just might appoint himself to fill a vacancy on that board. Again, this too fizzled out soon enough.
The latest is all the rumbling about how Hizzoner wants to take his beloved coaching model of management to where it might actually belong - the athletic director's position at the University of Toledo.
But can you believe the shrewd gall of interim AD Mike Karabin, getting picked up for DUI like that and, in the process, generating for himself much public sympathy?
How's a mayoral AD wannabe supposed to top that, we ask?
Think of today's column as the start of a public hearing on Carty's future.
It's time for the citizenry to weigh in, and so it is that we announce a little contest we're calling Operation: Hire Carty.
The rules are simple.
Get creative about Hizzoner's employment prospects, and then tell me what the mayor's next job should be, AND why he's uniquely qualified.
Send your entries either by e-mail or land mail.
No phone submissions, please, although you must include a daytime phone number where I can reach you.
The winner receives a political campaign T-shirt I once found in a Blade desk drawer, featuring a photo of the earnest and smiling 1993 mayoral hopeful Mike Ferner, as well as (aw, what the heck, we trust Alan Greenspan to do right by the economy) a deluxe rubber frog.
A word of caution: You have a tough standard to meet. Entries must be at least as clever as the one from the South Toledo man whose recent suggestion inspired this very contest.
Doug (no last name, please!) never told me where he stands on the mayor's tie-breaking vote to rezone a 50-acre South Toledo parcel that will likely end up a Wal-Mart - but he did think Carty would make an absolutely splendid Wal-Mart greeter.
Roberta de Boer's column appears Tuesdays, Thursdays,
and Saturdays. Email her at email@example.com or call 1-419-724-6086.