If memory serves, in the movie ďRudyĒ, near the end of the film when the main character is getting ready to enter the stadium to fulfill his dream of suiting up and eventually playing football for Notre Dame, he is asked if he is ready. He responds with a quote that is something similar to ďIíve been ready for this my entire life.Ē
Iíve been thinking about running for Maine Governor since my early teenage years over 25 years ago. I didnít dare breathe a word of it (or perhaps except in passing) for around two decades afterwards.
Itís difficult to say why some individuals want to be firemen or women and others want to be astronauts or nuclear physicists. I came from a professional, middle-class, intellectual yet divorced background. I learned, with differences in my family, to be aware of differing perspectives and the hard work, but necessity, of trying to build effective bridges.
I was consistently given the intellectual support that I could achieve anything that I wanted in life, but also, increasingly as I got older and with increased independence, came the recognition that I would have to do a lot of things at times 100% totally myself, and that Iíd have to continue to build up the necessary life survival skills if I wanted to prosper and thrive.
A part of me regrets leaving Maine after college for economic considerations, but it certainly did broaden my horizons and I have believed, as I have stated elsewhere that, as the saying goes, if you can make it in New York Ė the big city Ė you can make it anywhere. Professionally I have been more fortunate than many, which I think further reinforced my realistic confidence in regard to preparing for and entering this candidacy. I certainly was very excited to come back to Maine and love having returned.
Iíve generally been cautious and prudent in life, but also open to lifeís opportunities. Iíve known a lot of success and a little bit of failure. Iíve always thought that 85%-90% of my life decisions turn out very well and 10%-15% donít. If only I knew ahead of time what those 10%-15% would be (they include one divorce and a three year separation in a second marriage).
Mainers are resilient and strong people and I guess as a native Mainer (or perhaps for any number of other reasons) I have always been the same. Recently, from Nov. 16 Ė Dec. 14, I was in Eastern Maine Medical Center hospital following being hit by a pick-up truck while a pedestrian. I am on my way to making a full physical recovery as the doctors told me that I would, and this terrible accident (Iíll spare the readers a naming of the various broken bones) has only redoubled my determination and resolve in regard to the Governorís race. An accident of this kind also brings financial implications that has thrust me into a dependence at this time upon the generosity of others that I have received, for which I am sure I will always remember and continue to feel grateful.
Everything in my being, from the past all the way up to today, has coalesced and I believe is coalescing into this life dream of running for Governor that burns so strongly today.
I feel that I understand Rudyís words in the movie. Yeah, Iím ready.
Alex Hammer is an Independent candidate for Governor residing in Bangor. He and the campaign can be reached at Hammer For Governor, P.O. Box 202, Bangor, ME, 04402.