A many of you know this is an election year. One of the most momentous decisions of our generation lies before us. We have a choice between being prepared for the future and putting off preparedness to enjoy the moment. A choice between "having fun" and knowing that your children will be just a bit safer for your efforts. A choice between good old American values, or big hair and mirrored glasses. I am discussing, of course, the Just Cuz Half Marathon theme. The governing board split this year, right along party lines, over how the race should be run. Things came to fisticuffs, hurtful things were said on both sides and irreconcilable differences forced a split that may never heal completely. In the aftermath the only compromise that could be reached was to have 2 themes. This 1000 word non-partisan paper lays out the basic tenets of each argument so everyone can have a chance to get to know and understand the themes, the parties, and the candidates in a way that is not ridiculous at all. I promised Josie that I would represent here theme equally despite the fact that it is stupid. The race is held November 3 and runs from way up Mink Creek Road down into town to Centennial Park. It costs $40 and you can sign up here with no admin fees:http://pocatelloparksrecreation.sportsites.com/Player/PlayerSingleEvents.aspx?id=3272 $40 gets you a cool shirt, a bus ride to the top of the course, aid stations, draw prizes and lunch at the finish line. It is totally worth it. If you braved the snow and ice in 2011 you can email me back for a $5 coupon code. It is really easy and painless. If you have unused fun run free entries from volunteering email me and I will make you a coupon code for those. In 2012 we will offer Full Marathon, Half Marathon and Early Bird half. 8:00am for Full. 8:30am for early bird and 10:13 for Half. Now on to the campaigning. Theme 1: Joe Fro Party affiliation: the party party Party platform:Just Cuz is a celebration of running. For this seventh year we will come together, dress in crazy costumes, laugh, eat great food, dance, endure ridiculous weather, run 13.1 miles (or 26.2) and have fun. Come wear some big hair on top and anything you want to on the bottom! Candidate: Josie Candidate positions via soundbites: "For 364 days of the year we run to get in shape, lose weight, to train for races or perhaps to keep up with the neighbors. We wake up before dawn to log a few miles before work. We come home from work and log a few miles before bed. We endure freezing temperatures, we endure extreme heat, eat gels, stash water, watch our carbs, watch our protein, and order running shoe after running shoe. We tape, we ice, we pop Motrin, we eat bananas. We spend hours stretching or in the weight room. We run sprints. We do LSD (long slow distance). On November 3, 2012 we are going to run for FUN! Come and bring your friends and celebrate a years hard work. Dress in a crazy costume, let your hair down and enjoy the fall morning. Afterward, hang out and have a great lunch with a bunch of people who are just as crazy as you." "Let's face it- the zombie apocalypse is a Hollywood invention and a marketing tool of the Easton Aluminum Company to sell more bats." "This is the one race every year where time just doesn't matter and how you are dressed is just as important as how you finish. Enjoy, eat, hug, play and remember there probably aren't zombies." Theme 2: Zombie apocalypse Party affiliation: The party of fear and loathing Party platform: The world will nearly end in a horrifying confluence of bad science, inadequate supplies of bullets and poor decision making when the zombie virus escapes the top secret government lab. The only thing we can do is prepare through mock drills, hoarding and preemptive strikes against the weak. Running 13.1 miles as either a zombie or a survivor is really the only way to prepare for the madness that is absolutely inevitable. Candidate: lance Candidate positions via soundbite: "Being prepared for the inevitable zombie apocalypse by practicing at the Half Marathon is one of the most important things a person can do to save themselves when the end is near and all of your friends suddenly want to eat your brain." "We all know that scientists will eventually lose control of their super brain bugs and the world will be laid waste by mindless humans driven by hunger and hatred. We must have more hatred and more hunger" "If you have never run 13.1 miles in fatigues carrying a shotgun, a katana and a baseball bat you are in for a real treat" "We all know 99.9% of people will not run in the Just Cuz Half Marathon. We also know 99.9% of people will be bitten and turned into zombies. This hardly seems like a coincidence" "Only by becoming a zombie for a day and running until hypoxia and ataxia take over can you fully get into the 'mind' of a zombie and become better prepared to defend yourself against their ilk." "If there is any doubt about your ability to survive the pending end of the world as we know it you should start training right away." "I plan to be the LMOE" "There is a small chance that the whole zombie thing is just fear mongering and an excuse to buy man toys. I am not willing to risk it though. Also, I want a new shotgun."