The Hoosierist: How To Run For Mayor

Those cages along the canal in Broad Ripple, tornado daredevils, and advice for aspiring mayors. Ask The Hoosierist.
Q: What are the requirements to be a candidate for mayor of Indianapolis? 
Darren O., Indianapolis  

A: If you’re running as an independent, the rules are pretty sparse. All you have to do is prove Marion County residency for the past year. But if you plan to run as a Republican or Democrat, there’s a lot more campaign fundraising, alliance-building, and backroom deal-making involved. Also, it’s too late for all that, because the filing deadline to run as a major-party candidate in the May primary was February 6. But if you want to run on your own, you have until June 30 to turn in your paperwork. Which means The Hoosierist still has time to make his personal dream—to run as the Party Party candidate—come true.


Q: What are those weird wire cages lining the canal in Broad Ripple?
Vivian C., Indianapolis  

A: When he first spotted them, The Hoosierist’s 8-year-old son theorized that this long procession of U-shaped metal tubes with mesh strung over them was some sort of safety device to keep people from falling into the Central Canal. The Hoosierist—who promptly started calling the barriers “McAfees”—has since learned the more prosaic truth. The contraptions are part of a bank-stabilization project undertaken by the canal’s proprietor, Citizens Energy Group. To keep the waterway’s dirt sides from emptying into the canal (which supplies roughly 60 percent of the city’s water), Citizens seeded the area with native plants whose roots will help hold the soil in place. The metal tubing and mesh provide protection for the plantings over winter and will keep hungry birds at bay the rest of the year.


Q: Are you under any legal obligation to take cover during a tornado warning? 
Alex P., Carmel  

A: According to Indiana’s Department of Homeland Security office, if you see an F5 barreling down on your residence, you’re not required to take cover. As far as the state is concerned, you’re free to stand there like a boss, shouting “Woo!” and taking gigantic pulls off of a tallboy while death hurtles toward you. Nor are there rules against taking bad judgment to the next level by jumping into your primer-coated Camaro and chasing a tornado. Just keep one thing in mind: These ill-advised practices are legal so long as they involve only consenting adults. If, while chasing a twister, you endanger others or interfere with emergency responders, you’ll be arrested. And if you pursue a tornado with your underage kids at your side, you’re in a whirlwind of trouble.


The Hoosieristat


Number of Indiana Restaurants

Which might explain why we all look so well-fed. Although Kentucky has just 7,297, and it’s not winning any swimsuit competitions. And somehow Illinois manages to stay trim with a veritable all-you-can-eat buffet of 26,341.


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