stuck in those yellow wooden shoes and knocked into the
cheese that rolled into the street? Or the time you kicked
off the same shoe through the school window and Principal
Sherman blamed Tommy? Or the time you fell asleep and
brought Benjamin Franklin back to modern day?”
Liberty looked sheepish. “Okay, okay, you’ve made
your point, Revere. I am pretty good at horsing around. But
let’s not dwell on the past; let’s focus on today. So, what did
you get me?” Liberty asked wide-eyed. “Wait, wait, let me
guess. A giant-sized slice of carrot cake with no frosting?
Am I right?”
All of a sudden it hit me. I was so caught up in Cam’s
excitement, I completely forgot to find the cafeteria and
bring Liberty a snack. “Oh no,” I mumbled to myself. If
Liberty did not eat regularly he could get cranky.
“Um, Liberty, I am afraid I forgot to go to the cafete-
ria,” I said. “I know I promised but I completely forgot.
Cam got my mind racing, I’m really sorry.” I pulled out a
red apple from his saddlebag and apologetically said, “Here,
have this for now. And on our way to Manchester Middle
tomorrow morning, we can stop at the bagel shop. Maybe
you can even have two bagels. How does that sound?”
Liberty jumped in place and said, “Now we’re talk-
ing. A double dipper, double trouble … you have a deal,
Revere. I’m totally there. Spinach bagel, not toasted … or
wait, maybe an oat bagel … oh, so many decisions.” Liberty
seemed lost in a dream and then woke to say, “Wait, so why
are we coming back to Manchester Middle anyway?”
We started walking. “I’m actually helping Cam with
an election. He wants to run for student body president.”
“Aah,” Liberty said. I was pretty sure he was still think-
ing about bagels.
I explained: “I may have an idea on how we can help
Cam. But, of course, it requires your special talents.”
“Oooooh, do tell. I mean, what special talents? There
are so many for you to choose from,” Liberty mused.
I smiled. “Well, I think we may need to use your spe-
cial time-travel skills.”
“Um, you know a horse needs fuel for that kind of
travel and use of mental energy. Are there extra bagels in
this deal? Actually, maybe extra bagels and maybe an extra
slice of carrot cake or two. BOGO — buy one, get one?”
“More than likely, yes. Are you in?” I asked.
Liberty snorted. “Does the American flag have thirteen
stripes that represent the original thirteen colonies that rep-
resent the thirteen bagels you’ll buy for me?”
I raised my eyebrows. “Thirteen? I mean, yes, you’re
right about the American flag, but thirteen bagels?”
“Time travel isn’t cheap, Revere. I mean, if you want to
find another horse…”
I laughed. Liberty knew he had me cornered. “All
right, all right, thirteen bagels it is.”
He smiled, contentedly.
We woke up the next morning and visited our favorite bagel shop, Boston Bagels, which was located close
to Manchester Middle School. I grabbed fourteen bagels to
go, and we made our way to school to meet Cam. He was
standing at the front door as I dropped Liberty off near our
favorite oak tree.
“Good morning, Cam,” I said as I approached.
Cam looked up. “Hi, Mr. Revere. Did you get my email
about running for president?” he asked.
“Sure did — thank you for all the information,” I re-
plied. “Great job.”
As promised, Cam sent an email the night before listing
all his reasons he wanted to become president. I have to ad-
mit, I chuckled a bit at some of his thoughts. They included
“being cool,” “not being told what to do,” “having pizza par-
ties,” “being popular and famous,” and “having everybody
love me.” Cam wrote nothing about helping his fellow stu-
dents, doing anything for the school, or being a good leader,
so I knew we had work to do. At the end of his email, he
wrote in all capital letters,
PRESIDENT CAM, THE COOLEST DUDE
AT MANCHESTER MIDDLE.
He didn’t quite seem to have the school spirit in mind,
“What do you think?” Cam asked. “What should I do
I smiled and said, “I brought you a little something that I
think will help. Since you want to run for president, every good
candidate needs a plan.” I pulled out a medium-sized notebook
from my workbag. “Here, this is for you. Starting today, you
should write down any thoughts or ideas you have about run-
ning for president. This will help you as you begin working on
your election strategy.”
Cam took the notebook and said, raising his eyebrows,
“Thanks, Mr. Revere. Election strategy?” He laughed. “That
sounds very professional. I really don’t have the first clue about
how to start one of those. I was kinda thinking I could just tell
my friends I want to be President Cam of Manchester Middle
and they vote for me and then I’m president.” He shrugged.
I laughed and said, “An election strategy is a series of actions designed to get you a particular result. It is like a team
game plan. Every good coach has a playbook, so that is your
“Got it,” said Cam, energetically. He smiled and picked up
his new notebook. “So I’m trying to get the most votes, right?”