- COURTESY OF ARI SPOOL
Ari Spool is the tireless whirlwind of progressive energy who spun around Seattle for a stretch of years in the early-to-late Oughts. Deeply involved with the Vera Project, she also worked for The Stranger, helped Everett True create his Nirvana biography, and was a general force for good all over the place.
Ari Spool knew her New York mayoral campaign was making headway when her Klout score, a measure of social-media influence, rocketed. Her marquee endorsement is John Lurie, the artist and founder of the Lounge Lizards jazz ensemble. Her centerpiece policy is mandating lilac uniforms for the police department.
Ms. Spool, a 28-year-old former bartender, isn't running for mayor as a joke, but that doesn't mean it isn't funny. "We want jesters in New York," she said over soup dumplings in Chinatown. "The election is already a circus. I'm bringing the ruckus."
To say her bid is a long shot would be an understatement. Running as a write-in candidate, she isn't accepting financial donations, and she has no official campaign office. She cast her Democratic mayoral primary vote for public advocate Bill de Blasio, "because I thought he would make my most formidable opponent," asking supporters to wait for the general election to write her name.
But Ms. Spool, a resident of the Ridgewood neighborhood of Queens, has found an audience with a slice of young Brooklyn. She has thrown campaign events at the performance space Silent Barn, she has developed a word-of-mouth buzz, and now denizens of New York's D.I.Y. art scene have vowed to write in her name on Nov. 5. Some supporters say she is the reason they know about the election at all.
"I didn't know anything about any of the actual candidates," said Zoe Ligon, a 21-year-old artist in the Bedford-Stuyvesant area of Brooklyn, "but now I know a lot about Ari Spool. She's tangible. She's a regular chick."