One minute you're holding the largely symbolic office of Lieutenant Governor, and the next you're cruising with the Prez aboard Air Force One, taking the night flight to D.C. to assume your new job as a U.S. Senator.
I'm speaking, of course, of Brian Schatz, who hadn't even been sworn in to Dan Inouye's old seat before tossing his hat in the ring for the 2014 Senate race. And the 2016 race, too. In fact, now he's saying he wants to make the Senate his life's work.
So have the powers to be in the Democratic Party decided Brian's gonna be our boy for the next 40 years?
At least somebody had the balls to finally stand up to Inouye — now that he's dead. Because I don't think it set well with a lot of people, the idea that Colleen Hanabusa would be named his successor, just because it was his deathbed wish.
And at least we won't have to pay for, and endure, a special election so the politicians who aspire to something higher — and don't they all? — can play musical chairs.
Because no matter who we send to fill Dan's shoes, we're already screwed. As in no clout, no seniority, no connections, nobody to do the dirty business of twisting arms and calling in favors that Inouye did so well.
There are lessons for all of us in this.
First, keep your bag packed so you're ready to go when opportunity knocks. But remember, you have to actually open the door. And most likely fill out some paper work first. And never discount the value of laying the groundwork and engaging in some well-placed hoomalimali to grease the skids.
Second, don't cling to anything out of ego. Both Dans should have retired at least a term or more ago. It's not ageist to recognize the political insanity of having two Senators in their 80s. But both fought the infusion of any new blood and hung on too long, no doubt thinking they were serving the state as only they could.
Now we'll be living — voiceless and vulnerable, impoverished and inconsequential — with those decisions for years to come.