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I want to introduce myself to the Daily Kos community because I live in Texas (San Antonio, specifically) and am working very hard to turn this sucker blue.

When I retired from the Army just before we rang in the new century, I decided to kick back and let the young folk take me the rest of the way. Turns out, most people in politics are neither young nor much concerned with meeting my needs or those of my family, neighbors and friends.

I whined and complained and told anyone who'd listen that "I could do that better" but remained kicked back until Barack Obama called. He got my attention a smidgen ... then Republicans put me on High Alert with their shenanigans after the 2010 election.

The GOP madness eventually got me energized realizing I needed more allies: so I got serious and started registering voters. Surely that was enough.

Then something weird happened ..

Mid-December, our district's Tea Party-backed councilman announced he was stepping down from his seat to run for County Judge.

I learned of this news shortly after the new year and found out his replacement would be selected by the city council, which includes our mayor Julian Castro. Having a curious mind, I checked the City Clerk's web site to see the cast of characters to be considered. Imagine my surprise to learn that in a district of 133,000 souls, only one had submitted an application whom local pols and news reports had already pretty much crowned.

After pondering this fact a few days, I quietly started putting together my own packet, keeping a wary eye on the clerk's site for new submissions. Just one other person entering the fray would save me from having to leave my quiet life.

Alas, noon of deadline day arrived and still just one name listed. So I headed to the credit union to get my papers notarized (all the while checking my phone to see if anyone had come to rescue me from my foolish notions) then marched them downtown. I arrived home in an elated swirl just after the posting closed. "Wow! I just did that!!" I eagerly went back to the Clerk's site -- this time simply to see my name posted there.

Whoa!! What the what?? In addition to the presumptive winner's and my own, four other names suddenly appeared. Too late to save me from myself.

I'll spare you the suspense I just know you're all experiencing and tell you now: the presumptive victor presumptively won. But that's not the real story here. Besides the winner, the applicant field was surprising.

My competition consisted of: a no-show; a rather non-political sounding owner of the city's largest property management company; an anti-GMO/pro-environment activist with flaming pink hair and her own graphic design business; a criminal defense attorney who boldly invoked the names of the President and First Lady in his platform to get San Antonio fit, eating healthier and greenscaped.

And me. I ran on innovation in manufacturing, quality jobs with quality pay, budget cutting from the top down (not the other way around as we've been doing) and revitalizing some aging areas of town.

So ... it's all over but the cryin', right?

If you said "Yes" you'd be very wrong. In addition to my ongoing work with Battleground Texas registering voters across the city, this sleeping giant was just waking up. My new, pink-haired artist friend and I are now working together to clean up trash and graffiti in the district. A group of women have invited me to join them in creating a think tank to shape a future that incorporates greener, more modern corporate ventures that bring better wages and work conditions while also pushing back on cookie cutter development.

Our new district councilman has asked me to stay involved and keeps me up-to-date on district events and opportunities through the Neighborhood Alliance that turned out by the busload to voice their support of him. Their backing is key he's said, and events have proved, to any future ambitions here.

Oh, and I also reached out to the Daniel Boone campaign last week to help him start getting the word out about his fledgling campaign. Turns out the understaffed, overworked folks there were delighted to have another pair of hands on deck to focus on his communication efforts.

So, yes, 2014 has brought me a busy couple of crazy months so far and I'm hoping the madness persists.

If you've read this far, I thank you. So very nice to meet all of you.

[edit] Such an overwhelmingly positive response. Thank you for the kind welcome. Figure while I'm up here, I should add the link to Boone For Texas. If you're of a mind to, swing over and show him some love. We could use the help. Gracias!

Originally posted to Kathy Scheidel on Mon Feb 24, 2014 at 09:59 PM PST.

Also republished by Barriers and Bridges and Turning Texas: Election Digest.

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