Almost every January since I’ve been at the Record, I have compiled a list of words to retire. These are generally popular expressions overused to the point of being meaningless, but also words and phrases that I have caught myself using as shortcuts, which end up having the same problem. Some of my favorite examples include “very unique,” and, starting in January, anything “first.”
Don’t jump to conclusions. That’s not a critique of “America First” nor of Snoqualmie 1st, the coalition of candidates that are challenging nearly every incumbent on the Snoqualmie City Council this election. I think it’s great that people are starting to get involved. I’m just personally exhausted with the “us vs. them” mentality that has taken shape in recent years.
Besides, that’s in January. Right now, I’m compiling a list of words to return to circulation.
“Hear, hear” is a phrase I’m hoping to bring back this year, because I think we all could listen a lot more than we do. And because it’s also a cheer for people who have done something remarkable. And because I have a list of people I want to say it for.
Hear, hear! for the many candidates who have put themselves out there these last long months to ask for your vote for the largely thankless job of governing our cities, schools and so on.
Hear, hear! to the Snoqualmie Valley Chamber of Commerce for partnering with the Valley Record in the enormous task of putting on a public forum for every major political race.
Hear, hear! to one candidate, in particular, Snoqualmie City Councilman Bob Jeans; he was the sole incumbent to attend the Snoqualmie Tribe’s forum last week. I was not there, but I’ve heard from several people whom I trust that the event was not as neutral as the Chamber’s forums have been. Still, Jeans respected the process, and his colleagues, both at the table and absent. Last week, Jeans told me personally that he respected his fellow council members’ reasons for not being there, but he was glad he had been. It’s that regard for diversity of opinion, that willingness to state your case and hear others’ that deserves a special hear, hear!
Finally, and most importantly, hear, hear! to you, the voters, who all of this is for. Return your ballots by 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 7.