Boy is it nice to be back with you on this page. Loosing the opinion column (Cynical Sunshine) was definitely tough. Luckily I get this space twice a year and if you haven't already, I urge you to sign up for my monthly email newsletter at bryanraiser.com. This newsletter serves two very important purposes. One, I get to tackle some hot topics while giving you a glimpse into this nutty job. More importantly, it's a monthly email reminding you I'm listening to anything you want to tell me. And that point is huge since this job is all about communication.
I also want to say how lucky I consider myself to be elected with such a civil group. A group Corinne Lonsdale remarked as being "the best and most balanced council" she's ever been with. I'm definitely enjoying myself while finding it challenging to prioritize the workload as there is more reading, meetings, and research than can physically be done. Never mind balancing that with family and a job that actually pays enough to eat.
OK, now I have to address a point many have made: "Why don't you talk more in meetings?" For starters it's pretty funny for me to be told I don't talk enough. With my column, I could hear the issue, spend a week talking to the community then have a day or two to re-write my points. Council is a whole different game.
Televised council meetings are usually the last three hours in an eight to 12-hour day of sitting in a windowless room with recycled air absorbing new information. And it's not just new issues but it's relationships, protocol and I know this is probably going to sound silly but you wouldn't believe the amount of politics in politics.
So up to now my massive information absorbing mode involves listening to everyone and writing down any questions I have. More often than not those questions get answered. I used to think there was no point talking if the points have already been made. Now however I'm starting to realize you have to talk even if you have nothing new to say. I'm having a tough time with that since I hate wasting time, but it is important to let people know where I'm coming from with more than just how I vote. It's a difficult balance I'm still trying to find.
Well, that's all for now and again, I ask pretty please with a cherry on top for you to sign up to my newsletter (at bryanraiser.com) and feel free to contact me at anytime.
Have a great summer and see you around town.