When I was dating Julie, I spent a lot of time in the city of Phillippi. Phillippi {pronounced FILL-PEE} is a blue-collar city on the outskirts of Colosse and by far the city’s largest suburb. North Phillippi is mostly known for being a heavily industrial area where most of the inhabitants spend their days working in the chemical plants in eastern Colosse and spend their nights breathing in the fumes. Unfortunately the factories are technically in Colosse, so while they get the fumes, they don’t get the tax dollars. The south part of town is more middle class and upper middle class.

Julie’s father was a volunteer with the Phillippi Volunteer Fire Department and most of his friends were firemen and a lot of them were cops. Julie’s grandfather was a businessman and an aide to former Mayor Mack Kramer. Because of this, I happened to become rather knowledgeable about Phillippi politics despite not living in the city.

I noticed, shortly after dating Julie, that there seemed to be two different people asking to be re-elected mayor. There were “Return Mack Kramer” and “Re-elect Bill Rose” signs. When I finally thought about it, I was able to put the pieces together. Rose had deposed Kramer from office and they were running against one another. I asked Mrs. Bernard and got an earful because of her father’s work with Mayor Kramer.

The two apparently absolutely hated one another. Rose was Kramer’s nemesis while the former was on city council and the later mayor. When Kramer was term-limited out of office, Rose won and promptly took Kramer’s name off all of the things that Kramer had helped the city build (Kramer Fairgrounds because the Rose Fairgrounds, for instance). Then Rose was term-limited out, Kramer was elected, and we were back to the Kramer Fairgrounds. Rose ran against Kramer, knocked him out of office, and the city council finally settled on the Phillippi Fairgrounds. Rose was seeking re-election and Kramer was running against him by the time that I started becoming familiar with the area.

Rose won, and when he was term-limited out, Kramer ran for the post against a proxy from Rose’s camp and lost, the city finally had a new mayor. Kramer died a couple of years later and Rose ran for a City Commissioner post. All of Kramer’s families lined up behind Rose’s opponent, City Comptroller Marge Calvert, and all at once the war was renewed with Calvert running by proxy. It being a slightly Democratic district, the Calvert won and Rose, a Republican, went to work campaigning for his son who was running for Justice of the Peace and then went back to doing whatever he did when he wasn’t mayor.

In addition to ego, one of the differences between the two was style. Mack Kramer represented the industrial northside. He was an old-school conservative Democrat with a populist streak. Bill Rose, and his ascendency in local politics, represented the city’s shift from an industrial Flint-like town to a posh suburban enclave. Rose was a business-friendly Republican who seemed as uncomfortable around poor people as Kramer did around educated people. They really came by their dislike quite honestly. Kramer was fighting the Republicanization of Phillippi and lost that fight.

I was reminded of the battle as Clancy and I left for Beyreuth. The mayor that succeeded Rose resigned because (as he claimed) God told him that he was destined to run for Delosa Congressional District 6. Mayoral signs were everywhere: local businessman Pete Kramer vs. State Representative Buddy Rose.

Category: Statehouse

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2 Responses to The Kings of Phillippi

  1. Peter says:

    Phillippi {pronounced FILL-PEE} is a blue-collar city on the outskirts of Colosse

    I must say, this is the first time I’ve ever seen a pronunciation guide for a pseudonym 🙂

  2. trumwill says:

    The real city and its surrounding area has a lot of weirdly named locales. Spanish words with hard “J”s, vowels and consonants dropped, and add emphases. I figure adding unexpected pronunciations to some places (not necessarily the same places that actually have odd-sounding names) adds accuracy to the atmosphere.

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