My youngest son is on the track team at his high school. One of the events he participates in is a relay race. Most of us know how that works; the first runner in the race carries a baton, which is handed to the next, then to next until all four runners have carried the baton and run their part of the race.
Serving on City Council is like running a relay. Each of us in elective office get to carry the baton for a while, doing our best under the circumstances, then handing it off the next runners. In a foot race when the wind is at the runner’s backs, the times do not count as they are “wind aided”. Similarly, council members should not believe their press clipping when the economic winds are at their backs, as nearly everyone looks good when jobs are plentiful and city coffers are full.
In a foot race no records are set when the wind is in the runners face, as a stiff breeze prevents the runner from reaching her potential. Likewise, council members should not believe their press clippings during economic turbulence either, as few take into account the conditions in which they are serving.
As I finish my tenure on council, I am passing the baton off to new council members with this advice: Run with patience the race before you; always vote your conscience.