INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. and#8212; One does not forget a nicety, especially when it springs from a well of kindness that expects nothing in return. Such was the case back in the early 80s when a young woman from Molokai asked if I would give my vote to her for the Maui County Council. I said I would support her if she would promise free beer every Friday at five. She smiled, turned on her heel and walked away.
I had a little advertising agency in Kahului at the time and the next morning I got a call from a lady who was looking for help with her political campaign for county council ... it was her. I knew it was her but she had no idea I was the smart--- who had turned her away the day before. Feeling a blush of shame, I asked her about her fledgling campaign, was duly impressed, and offered to help.
Of course when she stepped into my studio to record a radio commercial she did a double-take, recognized me as the jerk she had asked for a vote, and came very near to walking out, but she stayed. I helped her as much as I could with her radio campaign for election, which she won.
At the time, I was training for Mauiand#8217;s and#8220;Run to the Sun,and#8221; a footrace from the sea to the summit of Haleakala, ten thousand feet straight up, a daunting challenge. It was most difficult to train for such a climb, for there was nowhere up there on the dead volcano to get water unless you carried it, which I did.
One morning, about a week away from the run up the side of that isolated colossus, I got a call from our new representative on the County Council.
and#8220;I understand youand#8217;re training for the and#8220;Run to the Sun.and#8221;
and#8220;Yes, I am.and#8221;
and#8220;Well, Iand#8217;m reading a good book and have the time to drive up the mountain with water and wait for you at various stops in the shade.and#8221;
and#8220;You would do that?and#8221;
and#8220;Yes, Iand#8217;d like to help ... itand#8217;s a demanding run.and#8221;
Well, she did perform that generous gesture, and with a smile too. It was probably the nicest thing anybody ever did for me, a kindness I will never forget. I can still see her sitting in my Jeep, in the shade of an umbrella tree, reading. It was a heartwarming sight.
Subsequently, I moved to Incline Village where after 28 slow moving years I would see her smile once again, this time in the Wall Street Journal. She is running for a seat in the United States Senate!
My first impulse was to write her and say, and#8220;Iand#8217;ll move to Hawaii so I can vote for you if you will promise free beer every Friday at five.and#8221; But I thought better of it.
Still, I wish her every success in her bid for the Millionaireand#8217;s Club, for she is a good hearted woman with a great head for common sense, which the Senate could sorely use right now ... Linda Lingle.
and#8212; Learn more about McAvoy Layne at www.ghostoftwain.org.