I Miss You Already Lois Tarkanian!

Posted by Michael Zahara on May 26, 2019

I think you were a great Councilwoman Lois and I wanted to state that publicly here and thank you for your efforts on our city’s behalf.  You did a very nice job and our city and its politics are better for you having served us so well, and I miss you already!  I really do love when I can write something like that for one of our few Nevada Elected Treasures!

I’ve also said publicly for at least the past 10 years that you are the most durable Dem Brand in the entire state and that NVDEMS was remiss and disrespectful not being more grateful and deferential to your durability as an Elected as well as your dependability that we would never have to worry about your being indicted, or feathering your own nest, throwing you weight around, or pulling rank, or taking your Grandsons to Strip Clubs like former Commissioner Mary Kinkaid-Chauncy had done with hers and she was surprised people thought that to be not appropriate for a Grandma to be doing for her Grandsons, even a Grandma from North Las Vegastan!

I actually met one of your grandsons and when he introduced himself as Jerry Tarkanian to me, I responded to him that I knew Jerry Tarkanian, Jerry Tarkanian wasn’t a friend of mine, but you son, are no Jerry Tarkanian!  Cracked him up! Nice kid too! You had just slipped him your credit card to get himself some dinner in him and his girl and he and I talked for quite a while after you and your City Posse Girls and remaining traveling Root Beer stash had left!  Your girls in the office have always been outstanding and very protective of you and of your political brand too!

I will cast my vote for Robin Munier next week because she works for you and because that Brian Knudsen guy is a big wienie who believes he’s running for the School Board!  I’m supporting Val Weber in Ward II because I have a feeling that 14 years of detente and peaceful pleasure and comity on Council you ushered in are coming to an end soon and that’s worth noting here in my salute to you!  You guys all should go out and tie a BIG ONE on because you all survived one of the biggest and harshest economic downturns in American history, you remained friends and friendly to one another while suffering through cutbacks you all had to approve and that your constituents all felt, and Stavros even got hairier, but not on his head as tax dollars got more and more scarce!

One of your more Temp former Posse Girls, Adrianna Martinez, is a dear to me old friend of mine and one day just out of the blue, you turned to me and said, ‘Adrianna really is a lovely person!’

‘Yes Mrs Tark, she truly is that!’, somehow tumbled out of my mouth in response surprised at your comment! Still today, she’s one of the very loveliest people I’ve ever known and you threw me off my game by saying so and managed to get me to do something I’d never done prior or since—which is why people talk to me and confide many things to me, I keep even waterboarding-proof confidences!—but I went home and popped Adrianna and email with your comment because it too was a lovely thing to say about her and so correct an observation!

For those who may not be aware, Adrianna may be the person who after my prodding and teasing Lois to update her hairstyle, finally got her to do so, and I’ve got to apologize to the Councilwoman if that lead to all the old pervs hitting on her all the time now when Council is in session, but will grin to myself if she’s not all that bothered by all the young pervs hitting on her all the time now during those same meetings!

That’s Mrs Dale Mitchell Carrison on the far right in the baggie uniform needing a tailor but she’s up in Douglas County where there are no tailors! 

She’s also the lady who shouldn’t have chosen to challenge Lois’s Council re-election bid long, long ago!

I thought at the time that your challenging Janet Moncrief was handled exceptionally well and showed you to possess great political skill.  That lead me to try my best to advise former sheriff candidate and now retired Metro PO Laurie Bischalso a friend and now married to our mutual friend Dr Dale Mitchell Carrison—to stand down and find another approach running against you which had I known she was planning to do, I would have been jumping up and down like my goddamned pants were on fire for her to take a pass and not even file against you!

If others didn’t know or thought you to be a political lightweight, I knew quite a different story about your exceptional ‘value’ to we here in Las Vegastan, and to our entire SoNev community.  I know that you’re somewhere ‘north’ of 50 years old now Lois, but the political world here is still very much your oyster were you to wish to continue onto another public office and I’m talking statewide public office, I’m talking about a Clark County Commission District C retry, and I’m talking about the US House too!  I had heard from a snippy bitch or two that you were just running and winning on your married name and Coach’s NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship laurels at UNLV.

No you weren’t and I knew that seeing you and coach together a number of times and years before I moved here permanently and eventually becoming your Ward 1 constituent ten years ago and which I still am today! That man loved you and you loved that man right back, anyone could see that if they happened to be looking at you guys together.  I saw this first over my three visits here over 1989-1990—The NCAA Championship—this place we call home was a glorious place to be a visiting tourist coming to see my family here back then and tens of thousands thanked coach for the Championship, and I wanted to also take the time to thank you for it too because you were at his side every step of the way too!   Oscar has his Carolyn and had his showgirls,and you and only you were Jerry’s girl and you were quite proud to be his arm-candy 29 years ago too!

You two crazy kids!

Many associate me with Ward II because of my friendship with our mutual friend, former Councilman Bob Beers and I did live a long time in II and Bob surprised me with inviting you along twice to his Beers with Beers! 

I engaged your daughter-in-law Amy at Judge Baucum’s fundraiser at Leone Cafe in 2016 and asked her directly why Danny’s political people weren’t using you in their Media.  Quite the opposite of you, Danny may have thought himself entitled to begin at the top in public office pursuit and his splitting up the GOP vote in 2010 re-elected the awful Harry Reid earning my ire.  Then this past cycle in 2018, he convinced Victoria Seaman to bow out of NVCD03 so he could run there instead of against Dean Heller which he told everyone was the president’s request of him and that may have been true, but it caused you to come out in his defense during the 2018 campaign!  I was dumbfounded by those giving him political advice again in 2018 when despite all the hateful rhetoric about $15 minimum wages, paid time off benefits, and the rich taking more than their fair share harming everyone else, now Congresswoman Susie Lee, a wealthy Democratic socialite and owner of some 17 homes it was alleged, and Danny never brought up whether she was paying her own hired help so generously as national Dems were demanding when the Labor market is flooded with illegals in SoNev and everywhere else!  He thought that President Trump was enough to get him over the finish line, and you’d have never assumed anything like that in any of your races over the years Lois.

I wasn’t here yet, but I know you lost a heart-breaker County Commission race in 2000 to Chip Maxfield by 546 votes so maybe you thought Al Gore would carry you over the finish line back then like Danny did with Trump last year?

<—-Jean Carnahan served two years of the term her husband won after dying during the campaign in 2000.  Everyone felt she had to be introduced so voters would be OK with her holding the seat with the Governor’s appointment until the 2002 election.

Danny would have won his 2016 race for NVCD03 against Jacky Rosen if he and you had cut a spot commemorating your late husband who passed in February on 2015.  I told him this, I’m sure others did too. I’d imagined it as just you and Danny sitting at your kitchen table talking to one another and reminiscing about your husband, old family photos interspersed.  Very tough to shoot and get right because you can’t script this type of ad. Its all in the editing. It’s all emotion and that’s what we needed to hear from him in 2016 and we all wanted to see that you were OK too Lois—we really did!  I had some background in this when Senator Mel Carnahan of MO died during his 2000 campaign and won anyway.  His widow Jean agreed to be appointed by the Governor to his seat and she agreed to cut a single commercial which ran after the election and though very different from coach’s passing, its a matter of doing something tastefully when you wish to share something so personal with voters.  I think you’d have done a fine job and that your kid would have won the seat just for his finally paying homage to his Mom and Dad at the appropriate time to do so, regardless, you would have had an irrevocable veto if it just didn’t come out to your liking if I were running things for Danny!

When I briefed you on all of this at Bob’s Beers with Beers, your eyes flooded with tears as you were at a rough spot along the way mourning your late husband that I wasn’t aware of until that evening and instantly, politics didn’t matter at all and we pivoted and talked one-on-one about your missing him so much, I shared my own issues with you and opened my second Root Beer from your stash and I’ve never known you to be anywhere without least two six-packs of Root Beer!  Then your melancholy moment passed and you smiled brightly and we continued talking about other things!

It was an extraordinary, tender, and very personal moment for us both and I told Bob about it privately but not my readers for some time.  I’m Danny’s age though much more handsome, and I was happy you were comfortable enough to confide in me about the blues you were feeling that evening!  The picture at the top of this story of you was from that very evening, Its a great shot and you looked none-the-worse for wear the entire evening!

Without question you are bad-ass and one tough broad Councilwoman Tarkanian!  Thanks for being that for us! You seemed to really enjoy your time on the School Board too and you built very Big Brand there and earned the affections of your fellow members, teachers, and parents including my late Auntie Jeannie who taught 2-nd graders in the CCSD for 34 years and loved every minute in the classroom, but the politics of our schools, she truly loathed but you’d never know it.  Although an inveterate voter, so adverse to political discussions was this Colorado rancher’s daughter, she and I never had even one political conversation until one day over lunch together, when she told me about the very high regard for Senator Dick Bryan and YOU; she held up the two of you as hopeful for the future of the District!  

About 8-10 years back, you began asking me how our Homeless Vets were getting along and at first I answered you with what I knew to be true, but then because though a concern of mine, Homeless Vets were not my signature issue and my sensing this was a direct order from you, I hit the books hard and studied my ass off assuming that this is what you wanted my briefing on going forward!  I went down there to drink sun-warmed hot beer offered by some guys, just trying to connect with others, wondering where the on foot Mental Health Advocates were for a rapidly growing number who have no one looking after them and out for them. I met a number of Metro’s DTAC officers including its former all-star Captain, now Deputy Chief of Tourist Safety Andy Walsh and I was pushy but pushed nicely the US Vets people too.  Though I’m very pleased the City recently fired the Courtyard Temps, I hope we don’t replace them with Dolly Do-gooder Social Worker-types and professional hand-holders who aren’t what this cohort of Vet Homeless almost exclusively men need.

What they really need is a battalion of big-boned female military personnel with big boobies and even bigger guns who are willing and capable of dismantling the Filipino-American and Philippine Nationals who are the largest group of predatory prostitutes and con-women specifically targeting this population on benefits days for a big number of these guys not all that much older than Danny and me.    To many of these not younger predatory women, the US never closed Subic Bay and left the Philippines for good.

So in my final always unofficial impromptu briefing today Councilwoman Tarkanian , the City of Las Vegas has made remarkable progress in dealing effectively and proactively with its Homeless Veterans cohort and I believe we are very close and closing in on being a national example of how to better foster success with this often difficult and hard to connect with population!


You were an accomplished, educated woman before coach ever became a twinkle in your eye and you in his!  You founded a school for the deaf in California and no one knows this about you!   I had a speech impediment when I was very young and my School Pathologist was Mrs Holmes who worked it out of me by 2nd grade!  But what I really think what your many fans like about you too Lois, is that you never stopped being a regular Neighborhood Farmer Gal—you never forgot about the grapes or the cotton on your family’s Cali farm, despite the fame and fortune your husband’s career brought and the gravitas your two PhDs bestowed, and the highs, lows and plateaus raising your kids added, you’d always remained Lois Huter, the chick with the Two PhDs!

There’s always been something very normal, very honest, and very sincere about Public Lois that people like about you,  People trust you.  I trust you and I always have. You’re the matriarch of your family, matriarch of our Ward, and matriarch of our City itself and I hope that Carolyn Goodman and the Council Critters are planning a huge commemoration renaming something BIG to salute what you’ve meant to Las Vegastan! 

I like Lois International Airport a lot if I get a vote! 

<—-The Loisphere Tower  works for me too!

I never asked you because I still believe today that I know the answer to my own question just based on knowing and observing your public self since 2002-2003; that you are one of those now very rare people who looked at their elective office public service as a calling and not as a job or as an opportunity to enrich yourself or others.  Thank you very much my very good woman for feeling that way and don’t correct me if I’m wrong and you’ve got a garage full of tens of millions you’ve run off with we somehow all missed!

You ma’am are a lovely person, a lovely woman, a lovely Councilwoman, a lovely bad-ass, a lovely tough broad, and a lovely friend!  I am confident Governor Sisolak is reading this right now and reaching for the phone and calling you to offer your appointment to one of our millions of major Board and Commissions.  We all hope that you’ll accept his offer but should you hear from his Chief of Staff Michelle White first—and who’s also a lovely person—then maybe she’s in receipt of my written suggestion to she and the Governor that you be appointed to Chair Nevada’s  super-secret and not yet announced newest and most powerful statewide Board:  The Nevada Board of Lovely People Serving Nevada!

I dig you Lois Tarkanian and thank you very much for just being you when we needed you most of all! 

To all you youngsters out there new to the game of politics, especially here in Nevadastan, and even more especially if you’re an Elected Dem newbie today who don’t know shit about Jack shit and all of his bullshit, study up on Lois and how her political career of smaller victories while serving added up in the end to a gorgeous set of lustrous pearls on a strand and which made this place a much better place to live and to call home!


Mike Zahara Siganture

Michael Zahara

A National Treasure!



…An Adorable Deplorable!