While most were watching Joe Biden and Sarah Palin square off tonight, I was in an elementary school gym in Mountain House, listening to 17 hopefuls competing for five seats on the Mountain House Community Services District board.
I'll give my recommendations after the second half of the forum is completed (Oct. 23, for those keeping score at home), but I can tell you I was immediately impressed by the candidates. Save one, who seemed to be in a little over her head.
There was an across-the-board committment to the "vision" of Mountain House as a community with plenty of neighborhood and grassroots involvement. Everyone at the table truly buys in to what the master-planned development will eventually become. Which is good, because that's the reason these folks bought homes there in the first place.
County Supervisor Leroy Ornellas was on hand to emcee the event, and had this to say about the panel:
"I have never seen a more diverse and impressive group. ... It's a shame we can only elect five of you."
I agree wholeheartedly. Any town in the county would be happy to have this many capable people yearning for a spot on a governing board. Democracy has a bright future in Mountain House.
And after watching a rerun of the Biden-Palin affair, I think I got the better deal. Besides, we had cookies.