Don’t you love people who vow to never, EVER, do something (fill in the blank with the appropriate action) and then swallow their pride and cave in and do it after all? Don’t you just want to razz them relentlessly? Ha ha! Loser!

So let’s talk about Twitter and tweeting.

Yes, I slammed it. Yes, I said that no one’s life is that interesting that I’d want to follow him or her on Twitter. Yes, I vowed, I would go to the grave NEVER tweeting.

So I just set up a Twitter account. Hah! Take that Mr. Backboneless.

I know what you’re thinking, “Why would you do that Cam?”

To save the world! Or to help in my quest to become leader of the free world, starting with representing Lanark-Frontenac-Lennox & Addington for the Green Party in the Ontario Legislature. I write out the riding name as often as I can to practice it since it’s soooo long.

Young people, you know, are into this Twitter thing, and old timers like me, well, we just have to get with the program and reach out to them. And this is what I hope to do, during the election. I’m not going to start tweeting until the election is called and I will stop once it’s over. Once the writ is dropped though, everyone in Lanark-Frontenac-Lennox & Addington will know what I’ve had for breakfast everyday! OK, maybe not that much information, but they’ll know what’s happening with the election. And yes, feel free to abuse me for being wishy washy and going over to the “tweeting” side.

I had to fill out a Candidate Profile for the Green Party and they wanted to know the address of my website, my Facebook account, my Twitter account, my Google+ account, etc etc etc. I reactivated my Facebook account, which surprisingly was exactly as I left it when I canceled it a year ago, almost like someone in a cubicle in some office was administering it for me in my absence. This Google+ thing though, just looks like Facebook. I also have a LinkedIn account. I just don’t think I can handle another Social Networking Site. Really? I need a website, a blog, a Facebook presence, I need to tweet, be on Google+, LinkedIn … So when will I find the time to go to All Candidates Meetings and knock on doors?

It shows you my commitment to turning this whole climate change thing around that I’d put up with this. And worst of all, they wanted a “head shot.” You know those, every candidate has them on their election materials. Ugh. And I was told at one of the Riding Association meetings, “None of those shots with your head in front of some pine tree that you took with your own camera, just because you’re running for the Green Party.” It had to be on a neutral (i.e. white) background. And done professionally.

So we asked our friend Spencer at Camera Kingston to take the photo. He’s into wind power and electric cars, so he agreed to do it in exchange for a book or two. I was faced with the dilemma of what to wear – a suit and tie to look like politician, or should I dress like the publisher/market gardener that I am. So we took a suit (with no tie) and then a sweater. It was a nice, never worn name brand sweater that Michelle found at a Thrift Store. Now what says, “I’ll be responsible with YOUR tax dollars” more, than wearing thrift store clothes for my candidate photo shoot!”

Spencer has a 96” inch Jumbotron-like screen that he uses to edit photos. For the love of God, I’ve never seen my face on such a large screen! I look like crap! I have sooo many wrinkles! And my nose is both huge and crooked! (Did you know that the name “Cameron” means “crooked nose?”) I look like a boxer… and not a very good boxer apparently! And when did I get so much grey hair? And what the … my teeth are so yellow from all the coffee and tea that I drink, I’m going to need some of those whitening strips …

Spencer took a bunch of photos. Some with me looking serious, some with me smiling like a lunatic, which I kind of preferred. But we ended up with this one. I guess it’s kind of middle of the road. Not too happy. Not too serious. Plaid sort of sweater, like I’m 10 years too late for this style, but I’m comfortable with that as a market gardener. You see, who needs spin doctors and a campaign team; Michelle and I have it all figured out.


Anyway, like a root canal I’m hoping I have the worst of the ‘candidate’ stuff over with. The Green Party has their background stuff. I’ve got my photo, and my Twitter account. I was comfortable with living quietly in the woods for a while there. Then we were told blogging would help drive traffic to the website, to help sell books. Then I started putting more personal stuff on the blog. And now I’ve crossed the Rubicon and got a political photo taken that says, “Hi, I’m Cam and I want your vote!” The wonders never cease. Just where does this end?

Perhaps I should get out the guitar and write some folksy songs to sing at All Candidates Meetings, to show how down to earth I am. Our Prime Minister did this a while back because he is viewed as being cold. I’m thinking his handlers said, “We need to soften you up. Here, learn to play this Beatle Song. It’ll help win votes.” How obsequious and cynical.

Nope. Not for me. That photo shows the real me, and I’ll do the tweeting thing to win young votes. That’s it! And smile at babies. Because really, they’ve got 90 years to live with the mess we’re making. Hey kid, I’m doing my best to make sure that your years on the clean up crew won’t be too nasty.