Rollin' with Rolando Part Cinq
Sorry, this story is taking a lot longer to tell than had I figured. I hope it's length is equal to it's enjoyment. I'll do my damndest to finish it up today. No promises. I'm a silly bastard.
To those just coming in, go back and read the other parts or this ain't gonna' make a lick of sense.
After explaining why it's taking two people to debate for an office that holds only one seat, Shays, disgusted with my obvious bullshit answer, began to ask the same question he asked of the three candidates before me.(us)
"Why do you want to be school president?"
"Mr Shays, with all due respect I resent the question. It seems you are prejudging Rolando by stating that he wants to be School President. A popular assumption anyways, and fair if it were asked of our current president who's done little but use the office for his own self interests."
I continued over the ruckus "President Seth may have difficulty understanding this, but Rolando doesn't wan't to be president. Believe me, the guy's got things he'd rather do. But in his giving nature, Rolando is willing to sacrifice himself for the cause. Truly a selfless act, and an attribute that should be mandatory for a candidate for this office."
The crowd took to their feet and cheered. Not necessarily for me and Rolando, but for taking the debate to a new level. I just made it personal between us and Seth, and the crowd smelled a fight.
Looking over at Seth, he was still wearing that grin but now he was nodding as if he were saying "You motherfucker...."
In interest of conserving time, I've decided to skip to the good parts. Which were basically the dialoge between Seth and myself.
At this point in the debate, we were able to direct a question to a fellow candidate, and have them reply.
Seth went before me, and directed his question towards me.
"OK, I'd like to state my question to the little team over there. I'm not sure which one of you to direct this to, but if either of you could answer this, that'd be fabulous. Gentlemen. My question is how could you, either of you, attack my qualifications as president when to the best of my knowledge neither of you volunteer for any extracurricular activies. Not once have I seen either of you get involved in fundraisers. I'd know, because for the last year I organized every one of them. How you could stand there and accuse me of not executing my duties in a selfless manner, while not getting involved yourself in these types of events is hypocritical, and mind boggling. I hope you have better evidence against your wild alligations that I only desire this postion for self interest, because frankly, I have the accomplishments that demonstrate my sacrifices."
I responded "First I'd like to remind you that I am not a candidate for president, so Rolando would like for you to direct your accusations to him. Which is unfortuate, because I'd love inform you of the mutiple extracurricular activies that I participate in. (I was in the school band, and a member of the Young Republicans....I know, I know, but I was YOUNG!)
But Rolando thinks you'd benefit from knowing that he is a member in good standing in three extracurricular activies. The computer club, drama club, (He usually played a tree.) and he also volunteers his time to tutor his fellow classmates afterschool. (Not to demean it, but it was for Special Ed)
I believe with your other question, you needed clarification on how we could question your sincerity in your position when you have spent time doing great things. One of them you mentioned was the annual fundraisers. The duty of the Student President is to organize these events. That rule was set in stone years before you were president. Rewarding you for merely preforming your requirements does not make one selfless. Going above and beyond is what truly makes a great leader. Honestly, in your tenure as president you've failed to lead. You've only followed. Follow in the paths that the trendsetters have paved for you. And after election day Seth, you'll continue to follow. You'll follow the next Bulkley High Student President, Rolando. A real leader for a change."
(I kick ass! Seth was PISSED! Granted, I was taking this shit WAY too far. I'm making Rolando out to be Jack fucking Kennedy. He barley knew where he was! But that wasn't the point. The point was to....ah, what exactly was the point again?)
So when Seth's turn came around to me again, he used what he thought was a Trump card. The fool played right into my hands.
"I'm sorry, but I can't help but feel uneasy about this, as I'm sure most of the students are. As much as I love enjoying debating with you, Jon, you're NOT the candidate. We haven't heard from the candidate, and I think the obvious question is if Rolando can't state his own case, how's he going to properly function as Student President?"
"That's a damn good question" remarked the honorable moderator- Sgt Fucking Slaughter.
"Seth, we all have challenges in this life. Throughout history, time and time again people with limitations had made outstanding leaders. One could have asked 'how could someone lead America, if he's bound to a wheelchair?' You might want to ask FDR.
Or, you might ask 'How could a deaf person become a famous composer?" You'd have to ask Beethoven.
But what you're implying is that, because Rolando is a man of few words, he'd be unable to perform as capable as anyone else is hogwash.
Let me tell you about another man who had trouble speaking. His name was Moses. Whenever he needed to address his people, he'd ask a family member to do it because he stuttered. How well of a job do you think that Moses fellow did at leading?"
It went back and forth like this, and when it was over I totally won over the crowd. I don't know if it was because I was the better debater, or they just liked me because I was turning this into a wrestling match. Either way, it put Seth on the defensive.
So the days following the debate made one thing clear. Rolando was gonna' win.
A teacher puller me aside one day, told me she just came from a meeting with the factulty, and told me point blank "Look, we always know who's gonna win these things before the voting takes place. And Jon, Rolando's gonna' win. Are you sure you Rolando wants this? It's a very big responsibility."
That was the first time I thought that asking Rolando if he wanted this might be a good idea.
I explained to Rolando that I had good news, and bad news. The good news was it looks like he was gonna' win. The bad news was it looks like he was gonna' win. I explained to him all the responsibilities that went along with winning.
He flat out told me no way.
I then told him that he'd be the first school president from a special ed class ever at the school. Maybe even the state, or the country. He could get on the news even.
He flat out told me no way.
Fair enough. Now onto a new plan. Operation- Get Rolando To Fucking Lose!
We thought it a little crass to just pull him out of the running, so instead we replaced all our "Rolando if Profoundo" posters, with others that read things like
"Don't Vote For Rolando...Paid for by Rolando."
"Rolando is NOT Profoundo"
"Rolando's voting for Seth!"
This confused a lot of people, understandably. And in the end we got our wish. We lost. We came in third, 5 votes from second. Not bad for a special ed kid that didn't talk.
Despite this being little more than me on an ego crusade, some good did come out of this.
Rolando for instance got A LOT more friends. He became very social (well, sorta) and nobody would dare pick on him anymore.
And up until graduation, Rolando still wore his "Rolando is Profoundo" T-Shirt at least once a week.
I like to think of him working in at Microsoft or something, still wearing that shirt on casual Fridays.
(To be continued...)
JUST KIDDING, THE END!