yard signs



With husband and wife pair Kevin and Mary Wolff running as Republican and Democrat for the same At-Large County Commissioner seat, the message is clear. Elect him, err, her, err... The bizarreness of the whole situation still hasn't rubbed off yet.

Stein Volunteer Mixes Campaign Signs and Highway Beautification

As printed in the Chapel Hill Herald on October 7th, 2006:

I never knew how much trash local residents throw out on the road until I spent last Sunday putting up yard signs with Chatham County resident Staples Hughes.

Hughes, who spends his weekdays advocating for low-income accused criminals in the North Carolina Office of the Appellate Defender, has spent many weekends over the past 15 years putting up signs for candidates he knows or respects along the roads of Chatham County.

The lucky beneficiary of Hughes' handiwork for this election cycle is Superior Court candidate Adam Stein. And there is no doubt that Stein is lucky -- Hughes has this banal but necessary part of local election campaigns down to an art form.

He knows most every intersection in Chatham County and how many signs should go at each of them. He knows that you should ideally put seven staples each on the left and right sides of the folded sign to hold it together.

What are the Really Free Market Signs made of?

Yesterday I was walking around Carrboro and Chapel Hill checking out the local candidates yards signs. Amongst all the political signs I noticed a sign not advertising a campaign. They were apparently home made signs letting us know about the Really Free Market, a "free event, where all are encouraged to give, receive, and create on their own terms."

I got closer to admire the hand cut spray paint stencil lettering, just as I would with a painting to determine its technique. Then I noticed behind the thinly painted white background was another sign. It was a school board candidate's yard sign repurposed! Knowing this I looked closer at more Really Free Market signs and noticed that other candidates yards signs had been altered this way too.

Signs of the times 2005

I have long felt that the placement of candidates' yard signs can tell you a lot. Each of us tends to put signs in places we think people are likely to see them, usually based on places we ourselves feel likely to see them. For example, if there are gaps in signage, we don't notice them unless we see the gaps ourselves.

Since most yard signs are put up by friends of the candidate, if not the candidate herself, they tell us a lot about the milieu of each candidate. Do they spend a lot of time near local schools, downtown, the mall, the grocery store, parks?

Today I went on a walk to see what yard signs are up in my neighborhood. I walked about a mile west into downtown Carrboro and a mile east into downtown Chapel Hill. Here is what I saw...

Here are SOME of the many signs I saw in downtown Carrboro:

News from Carrboro

Just in from Carrboro --

Someone is running around town defacing Joal Broun's (incumbent candidate for Alderman) signs claiming she is, among other things, for high-rises, high-taxes, and against affordable housing and is a friend of developers.

Can someone explain this? Who would do this? Putting the merits aside, Broun is likely to be #1 in the vote tally. If a challenger is responsible, one would expect them to go after a weaker candidate.

On to the merits…Broun has been Carrboro’s most outspoken advocate for affordable housing . . . one of the most outspoken officials in the county! And as for building heights and taxes – they all voted for new heights (except for Gist) and Broun is one of Carrboro’s biggest tax impact sticklers during the annual budget process.

I predict these tactics backfire and Broun is the #1 in Carrboro.



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