#68: Garden City, MI 11/21/16

Three days before Thanksgiving, the Garden City council was ablaze in festivity. I don’t know if everyone was hopped up on cranberry sauce or had been mainlining gravy in the bathroom, but city council members were chomping like Santa’s reindeer to do the People’s Business.

And it all kicked off with this electrifying audiovisual overload for the National Anthem, complete with a booming choir and tear-jerking stock footage:

What’s even more American than a waving flag? How about a waving Santa:

“I wanted to remind everybody that immediately following the Santaland Parade this Saturday, we will have Santa down at the old farmers market,” the city’s downtown development director reminded all the good little girls and boys.

“We will have cookies and hot chocolate for everybody and I believe the mayor will also be handing Santa the key to the city.” Hold the phone, mayor. Don’t you know how Santa works? He doesn’t NEED a key–he just slides down the chimney at city hall. DUH.

And speaking of sliding, a lady from the county commissioner’s office was all smiles about her own early Christmas present: a shiny new road.

“It’s looking GOOD!” she marveled. “I don’t know if you’ve been down on Cherry Hill Road but it is smooth as a whistle! They were working like ants. I’m like, WHOA!”

As a whistle! That is impressive! Most roads I’ve ridden on are smooth as a bumpy graham cracker. Clearly some deal with the devil was made here to get a whistle-smooth piece of turnpike.

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“This road is slicker than a stick of butter in a microwave.”

However, the city council meeting was about careen through some deep potholes. And like most headaches, it started when the mayor opened up public comment on a contract to purchase discounted gasoline.

“How much money?!” shouted an elderly man in a neon safety vest as he hunched menacingly behind the podium.

“We’re getting it for 98 cents a gallon,” Mayor Randy Walker patiently explained.

“HUH?!” the man screamed.

“Gasoline for the police cars, fire trucks,” the mayor raised his own voice.

“BP has it $1.98!” the man slurred in disbelief.

“We get it cheaper. They don’t have to put all the taxes on it,” Mayor Walker reassured his accuser. “That’s a pretty good deal. I’ll take that.”

The elderly man, satisfied that Santa Claus wasn’t pulling a fast one on the taxpayers, turned and sat down.

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Why is everyone else not wearing their protective safety gear?!

Next, it was Mayor Pro Tem Pat Squires’s turn to talk turkey. Clad in a pink “Santaland Parade” hoodie, she read from her notes. “I move to purchase an aerial lift truck from Wolverine Freightliner. Our old one is 26 years old and it is not able to be used anymore according to the state of Michigan.”

Well, that didn’t sit right with Mr. Vesty McYellington, who immediately shuffled to the podium.

“You can fix it up!”

Mayor Walker was insistent. “It’s 26 years old. We gotta get a new one!”

“Why buy a new one?! Fix it up! It’s my money! My tax dollars!” raspily bellowed this modern-day Scrooge.

But the mayor had made his list and checked it twice. “Oh-kay,” he sighed. Then the council voted: Garden City was getting a new truck under the tree.

Final thoughts: I give 10 out of 10 stars to Santa for delivering a smooth road, new truck, and amazing gas prices to Garden City. See you at the parade!

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