City Election Yard Sign Count
October 18, 2009
We kind of led with the punch line on this story. While it is customary for Edhat to do a sign count before every local election, this story has a twist. But, the way this song played out, we did the twist before the "yeah baby".
Yep, the yard sign count was just an excuse to go out looking for illegal yard signs with two of Santa Barbara's biggest advocates for responsible signing, Joe Blum and Betsy Cramer. Yes, the very same Betsy Cramer who takes those beautiful pictures for Edhat. And, yes the very same Joe Blum who is married to the mayor.
Anyone who knows Joe Blum, knows that he takes lawn signs very seriously. When his wife was running for office, she put him in charge of the yard signs (to keep him busy, he says). He would find people who would allow signs to be placed on their property, install the signs, and make sure they didn't get stolen. After the election was over, he would make sure they were removed.
But the yard sign business is not all green grass and white picket fences. Often times, it's a front porch full of backroom politics, where candidate supporters sneak out at night to remove their opponent's signs, and place their own signs illegally on public property. Joe and Besty have plenty of stories to tell of their own slyness, and of trickery deployed by their esteemed adversaries.
Last week, we took a two-hour tour around town with Joe and Betsy, in the Edhat green car (back in action after its Cheltenham sideswiping). Starting at City Hall, we drove to the Lower East Side, up to the Riviera, down to the Upper East Side, out to San Roque, back to Samarkand, through the West Side, up to the Mesa and back through the Shoreline Park area and returned to Downtown.
We made a brief stop at Joe's house on the Mesa, to see a slideshow from his glory days of sign placement. We drank a diet soda. And, we met his two beautiful (and badly misbehaved) Golden Retrievers.
It was fun. And, even though there were some very strong political biases sitting in the passenger seats of the green car, all candidate yard signs were duly recorded, and all illegal yard signs were photographed and logged.
But as we said at the beginning, for this particular story, we put Descartes before the horse. Last week, we posted a blank slate of photos showing candidates advertising their candidacy in the parkway - where only hitching posts should go. Later in the week, Joe Blum posted more signs.
So, there is nothing left to do here but announce the top candidate signs. Here are the number of properties (multiple signs for one candidate on one property only got one tally) we found sporting signs for particular candidates:
Pazzo and ChuckStyle were the only two Edhat subscribers to come up with both the Mayor and the City Council candidate with the most signs. Showing true bipartisanship, the Edhat Dog decided that both subscribers should be awarded t-shirts.
# # # #
# # # #
# # # #