(Neil Feinberg’s April 3 Lincoln Journal column)
With the retirement of Lady Sara Mattes from the Throne of Three (aka the Selectmen), and the ascension of the, how shall we say, somewhat less loquacious Lady Renel Fredriksen to take her place, one burning question remains: will Selectmen meetings be any shorter?
The average length, gavel to gavel, of the last ten Selectmen meetings was one hour, 42 minutes and 21 seconds. This includes, at opposite ends of the scale, one super-long meeting that ran 2 hours 29 minutes and 27 seconds and another that clocked in at only 54 minutes and 53 seconds. That one will be tough to beat, even with Lady Sara no longer participating. Especially with all the issues this board faces.
For now, as Lord Noah Eckhouse takes control of the Iron Throne (i.e. – becomes Chairman of the Board of Selectmen) and surveys the kingdom spread before him, he can foresee problems from the North Region and the Eastern Continent, and from palace intrigue closer to home.
His first order of business must be to do what all truly important rulers throughout history have done: he must raise an army to defend that North Region. He may also need an air force to combat the Dothraki horse warriors who invaded our land and annexed our property at the end of Airport Road. This invasion, done at the behest of the North Region warlord (aka the National Park Superintendent), must be avenged if the Iron Throne is to retain its sovereignty.
The Selectmen are committed, for now, to pursuing a course through the Federal Courts. But that is because we are weak and lack the ability to repel the invaders. To make matters worse, the Kingdom of Lincolnia must first defend itself from the warlord’s lawyers. For only in the Seven Kingdoms of the Western Suburbs can the Dothraki occupy your land and
then sue you for making them do it.
Clearly, the ragtag militia (the Minute Men) of Lincolnia is no match for the Dothraki. Besides, most members have jobs and are unable to serve on the front lines full-time. Thus, a professional army must be raised. But will the good citizens support such a bold move, especially with a new Palace of Administration (Town Office Building) and a new Temple of Education (public school building) coming down the King’s Highway?
In addition to the North Region, Lord Noah must appoint an emissary to the distant world of Sudburyland. The recent presentation to our Revolutionary Council (Town Meeting) by the Lord of the Regional High School was downright depressing to anyone who loves education, and who doesn’t here in Lincolnia? Apparently, the serfs of Sudburyland have revolted against the oppressive taxation imposed upon them and have refused to allow any new property taxes. Without that, Sudburyland has had to cut back on global exploration as well as spending on their schools.
But is this a problem without a solution? None of our neighboring kingdoms want our teenage lords and ladies. Not Westonia, nor Concordia, both of which are in the throes of building new Temples of Education. Perhaps Lady Renel could solve this implacable riddle on behalf of the Kingdom. After all, she used to be the Kingdom’s Ambassador to the regional high school before Sudburyland’s serf uprising.
Speaking of tasks to accomplish, Lady Renel will have big shoes to fill when she assumes responsibility for Lady Sara’s fiefdom, the principality of HATS. Will she be able to maintain the strong alliances forged with the neighboring Kingdoms to thwart the expansionist plans of the Massport Evil Empire? Or will the Evil Empire form a dastardly alliance with the Dothraki?
But perhaps the most intriguing issue facing Lord Eckhouse and the Throne of Three will be how to respond to the palace intrigue and the Machiavellian tactics of the Lords of Education who continue to push their proposal for a new $49 million Temple of Education. What
will the Throne Threesome do when this issue comes before them? The Selectmen will have to take a stand on the new Temple just before next fall’s Revolutionary Council (Town Meeting) consideration
of the project.
The Kingdom’s fortune tellers are already predicting that if the Selectmen don’t back the project, it will be go down to defeat Not even the normally rubber-stamping Town Meeting, they predict, would dare vote to spend all that money without the Throne of Three’s unanimous approval.
It will be important for the Throne of Three to provide guidance to the Kingdom’s Finance Committee and Capital Planning Committee as they all struggle to study the less costly alternatives. After all, supporters of the $49 million Temple of Education are already lining up to denigrate the repair option.
In this final year of the first reign of Lord Eckhouse let us all bow our heads in prayer that he may find the strength and wisdom to lead us to victory. And maybe he can find a few magical dragon eggs while he’s at it. We could sure use ‘em.