Tuesday, March 31, 2015
The story of Annie Sharp and Randy Turner's birthday card
And for the life of me, I had no idea why Annie Sharp wanted to talk to me.
If you were Annie Sharp, would you want to talk to somebody who describes you accurately day after day?
But there she was, heading across the Corley Auditorium at Missouri Southern State University, a smile plastered across her face to the second row seat where I was sitting preparing to take notes on the Joplin R-8 Board of Education candidate forum.
"Mr. Turner, didn't you just have a birthday?" she asked.
"I don't have a birthday until next year," I said, but she quickly brushed that off and continued a conversation that was already one sentence longer than I would have preferred.
"I know you had a birthday, I used to send you a card on your birthday."
So that was what this was all about. I had written about her using her access as a board member to boost her re-election campaign.
And I still don't recall ever receiving any birthday cards from her, though it may well have happened.
Left unmentioned was the fact that I had written about her sending birthday cards and including her campaign literature, definitely crossing the ethical line.
As I sat there, I considered explaining that to her, but as I did, everything else she has done the past several months, every time she has crossed lines which she should never have crossed- using school facilities and a captive audience of teachers to make her campaign video, e-mailing teachers and asking for help with her campaign, asking for teachers' home addresses (and then apparently getting them through the teachers' records), and aiding and abetting one of the most morally bankrupt superintendents this area has ever seen.
It was an awful sight, seeing Annie Sharp's political life flashing before my eyes.
So I didn't say anything and after an awkward pause, she left, clearly irritated with me. For some reason, she thought I would really want to talk to her.
Those few sentences were enough, make that too much, for me.
As for my birthday. Annie Sharp was wrong- by more than three years. My last birthday was February 29, 2012. As I told her, I will be having a birthday next year.
Don't bother to send me a card, Annie.