What next for our lame-duck mayor? After spending his entire adult life in politics, Greg Nickels can't join a downtown law firm because he isn't a lawyer. Nor, in fact, does he even have a college degree. He's stigmatized as a loser, a guy who can't shovel snow, a champion of costly, unpopular transportation projects, a flunky to Paul Allen and other campaign contributors. His career options may be quite limited as a result, especially in our current recession. Suddenly, unexpectedly, we feel for the guy.
Nickels inspired little love during his two terms as mayor, yet his concession speech after his primary defeat made us see him in a new light. He was funny, humble, not at all rancorous about his stunning rejection by the electorate. For the first time in eight years (and perhaps longer), we actually liked the big lug a little bit.
So cheer up, Greg, we know exactly what you should do next with your life. Details after the jump...
The suit, the tie, the humility...with his jowly, baggy physical presence, Nickels is a guy who--out of office, anyway--inspires little respect. He's not handsome or articulate. He doesn't have some fancy Ivy League degree. His son got in trouble with the law. His flaws make him more relatable somehow. His lack of charisma almost becomes a badge of honor. He reminds us of someone, a certain schlubby comic who, in a signature film role, decided to earn the respect he felt was denied him because he lacked one small line on his résumé.
We refer, of course, to Rodney Dangerfield in the 1986 hit comedy Back to School.
And we suggest Greg Nickels do the same: Go back to school! Reenroll at the UW and finish the degree he began in the mid '70s. Think of the possibilities: