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Archives: July 2012

What’s Weingarten Writing? – The Classic Edition

WaPo’s beloved Pulitzer-Prize winning “humorist” Gene Weingarten is taking some downtime. This week’s column is a reprint of a piece he did in 2002. This is great news. WaPo will be able to hand select a GREAT piece to help us forget about how terrible his recent writing has been. Sadly, my internal optimist was left sorely disappointed because this week is just as bad as all the other poop he’s been shoveling on us recently.

It’s a recap of when Gene was brought out to a book club in Charlottesville, Va. that is run by a group of men. Gene runs through all the hackneyed jokes that you’d expect from a highschooler about the fact that it’s run by men. The invitation was extended by a man named Ashley, to which Gene says, “I was initially worried because his name is Ashley. Worse, he had confessed that he was named after Ashley Wilkes, the character from ‘Gone with the Wind’ who displayed all the manliness of a bra.” Hardee har har, Gene. Did you have images of bros snapping towels at each other while chugging beers and singing Nickelback?

It is possible for both men and women to enjoy reading. Just don’t hold it against them because they somehow don’t like reading your work.

Daily Caller is ‘Fully Functional’

The Daily Caller‘s spokeswoman Nicole Roeberg wrote just moments ago to say that the site is now “fully functional” sans XXX porn. Actually, she doesn’t mention the porn but says, “Google has done it’s thing and there are no more error messages received when visiting the site.”

Early this morning, the site had a banner that left nothing to the imagination involving a naked blond woman and a rugged balding date.

Want a refresher on this morning’s fiasco? See here.


Afternoon Reading List

Sen. Mitch McConnell blasts old media: Buzzfeed‘s new Washington Bureau Chief John Stanton landed a sit-down interview with Sen. Minority Leader and Muppet, Mitch McConnell (R-KY.), in a wide-ranging interview that zoned in on new media. Like most right-wingers, McConnell, whose lips are nearly permanently pursed, takes the opportunity to bash old media, which he says favors Dems. He points a sharp index (or maybe, in this case, middle) finger at the NYT and says, “Let me tell you, I think the New York Times monopoly is over.” He praises the new media, saying, “I kind of like this new environment. I think it’s much more competitive, much more balanced.” Read the full story here.

The New Yorker‘s Lizza imitates Fifty Shades of Grey: For anyone who has read the 50 Shades trilogy, the word “envisage” is ridiculously prevalent. In the Aug. 6 issue of The New Yorker, Ryan Lizza writes a lengthy profile on House Budget Committee Chairman and VP shortlisted Paul Ryan.

“To envisage what Republicans would do if they win in November, the person to understand is not necessarily Romney, who has been a policy cipher all his public life. The person to understand is Paul Ryan.”

Lizza interviews Ryan about his original Roadmap (or budget plan) and highlights the conservative media. He writes, “Rather than just build support inside Congress, Ryan promoted his budget plan through the rich network of conservative media and think tanks that helped influence Republican members.” Ryan “became an icon within the insular world of right-wing pundits” even though in Congress things were far different: in 2008, with midterm and Presidential elections looming, the Roadmap attracted just eight co-sponsors.”

Details Lizza unearthed about Ryan: 1. His father, grandfather and great-grandfather all died before age 60. Ryan is 42. 2. His home is on the National Register of Historical Places. 3. The house has eight bathrooms. 4. In high school Ryan worked the grill at McDonalds. “The manager didn’t think I had the social skills to work the counter!” he told Lizza. 5. In high school he was both Prom King and Biggest Brown Noser.

Actually forget what we said earlier about not being able to read the story unless you buy the mag. That was apparently a practice of the past, not the present. Read the piece here.

Caption This

Today’s photograph is of the illustrious Paul Wharton of Real Housewives of D.C. and Paul Wharton Style fame. Wharton was sunbathing over the weekend and it looks as though he is busy sucking his stomach into the bowels of his lower back. Where was he? “At my pool on NY Avenue. We had a blast!” he told FBDC.

Send in your greatest captions and we’ll print the best ones. We would tell you to keep it clean, but it’s Wharton. So be as sassy as you want. Send to or to All submissions for this contest are anonymous unless otherwise explicitly noted.

1. Summer lovin’ had me a blast.

2. We always knew Paul’s nickname was “Lucky Pierre” (Google it.)

3. Clearly, Wharton is the ham in this sandwich.
4. Fergie, from the Black Eyed Peas, looks like shit these days.
5. Is that a curler in Wharton’s pocket or is he just in need of a relaxer?
6. Don’t even try to hide the African Shea Butter. My hair is going to need a serious deep conditioning after all this sun damage.

What’s Politico’s JMart Tweeting?

Politico Senior Political Reporter Jonathan Martin is a smart guy. He offers great political analysis around the clock and seems to really know what he’s talking about. Of course, you wouldn’t know that if you based your opinion on his tweets. Sometimes, it can be difficult to boil your thoughts down to 140 characters. What JMart does goes far beyond that. Most tweets are a festival of slashes and abbreviations. It can resemble Morse code.

This is classic JMart. Abbreviating where he doesn’t even need to. He comes in at under 100 character, so you can go ahead and type “British” or just use “&” instead of a “/.” Here’s another example.

Reading this gave me a headache. Who, over the age of 15, writes “sez” when you don’t need to? It’s like someone gave a caveman a smartphone and asked him to tap out his thoughts on politics.


White House Pool Prize


Our sporadic but no less prestigious White House Pool Prize goes to freelancer Matt Laslo for his weekend reportage. We appreciate the irony of the Pool loitering near a “No loitering” sign as well as the reporter telling us in great vivid detail what he smells like. And then the grand finale: He gets an international tip on FLOTUS mid-report. Well done, Laslo!

After holding in the McDonalds across from the FBI building for more than an hour (near a sign reading: “Please No loitering. Time limit 20 minutes.” Oops) the pool now smells like grease and is daydreaming of fresh vegetables. Small crowds gathered on the three open corners of E and 9th NW to see what all the black SUVs were about (sw corner closed to foot traffic). With FBI Police SUVs blocking traffic, OTR motorcade started slowly rolling at 11:23.

No sign of POTUS post (or pre) hoops. He put in more than two hours in the building. No word on how much of that was on the court. Your pooler did receive a helpful tip on the whereabouts of FLOTUS from avid tennis player and Bravo fan, Molly Hooper of the Hill (@mollyhooper). See below.

“Just saw your pool note … FLOTUS has been caught on cam several times on Bravo TV in the last 10 minutes sitting in Serena Williams box at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in Wimbledon. She’s sitting to the left of Dominique Dawes (former Olympic gymnast) and in the row ahead of Venus Williams, watching Serena play Jelena Jankovic at the Olympics women’s tennis event.”

Daily Caller Goes Hardcore XXX!

Feeling a little frisky this morning? Then you may want to head over to The Daily Caller.

“Who’s Calling The Shots?” was the actual red bold headline on a story this morning on The Daily Caller website by Executive Editor David Martosko regarding President Obama allegedly canceling the killing of Osama Bin Laden.

But a better question might be who’s calling the shots on the publication’s banner ads? See the XXX-rated performance above the story below. The pub’s Twitter feed says they came under a malware attack last night, so that may be one explanation.

We reached out to the publication’s spokeswoman Nicole Roeberg for more on the matter. Roeberg assures us that no, The Daily Caller isn’t planning on regularly running porn on the site. “One of the accounts on our ad server was hacked, and as a result someone was able to place those inappropriate ads on our site,” Roeberg wrote in a formal comment to FishbowlDC by email. “As far as we can tell, the ads were ONLY visible on iPhone and iPad devices, not on computers or Android devices. The problem with the ads has been fixed, and as soon as Google does another crawl of our site, the error message should go away.
The site is perfectly safe to visit now. Obviously, we would never intend to run ads like this on our site.”

UPDATE: Is it really safe? Despite The Daily Caller saying the site is now safe, the warning message still pops up. “What they’re saying is that the problem has been fixed, but Google won’t recognize that until it does another crawl of our site. As soon as that happens, the error message will go away,” Roeberg explained.

Visit The Daily Caller at Your Own Risk

Try to visit The Daily Caller this morning and you’ll quickly be given a very ominous-sounding warning like the one above indicating you could catch the technological equivalent of an STD if you visit the site. The warning says the site may have been compromised by a hacker, but says if you trust the site and understand that forging ahead may harm your computer, go ahead (heavily implied: go ahead, dumbass) give it a shot. The warning continues, “You should not proceed or perhaps try again tomorrow and go somewhere else.”

No doubt they’re urgently looking into the matter.


Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

“Good morning. A cup of coffee with my son Daniel outside- before getting ready for work. Thoughts on the day?” Love those dinosaur pj’s! — FNC’s Bret Baier on Friday morning.

The King of Buzz Returns

“Emerging from a week off the grid, doesn’t seem like I missed much.” — Buzzfeed Political Editor Ben Smith, who is apparently disappointed in all of us. Grab the tissues.

The Fix Hits Grocery and Destroys Day for Everyone

WaPo The Fix’s Chris Cillizza ventured out to the supermarket over the weekend and made sure to make the culinary experience fun-filled for everyone. Just see the reactions — they’re funnier than Cillizza’s original news.

Cillizza: “Taking a 3 year old and a newborn to the grocery store by yourself should be an Olympic sport. #London2012.”

“@TheFix Just sat next to a family with about a 3 y/o at Wegmans seafood bar. Shouldn’t be a sport, should be a crime.” — Col. Morris Davis.

“@TheFix maybe for a man; for women it’s called ‘errands’” — flack and news junkie Wanda Moebius putting Cillizza in his place. Wanda is a VAP at the Advanced Medical Technology Association. She’s formerly senior direcot at PHRMA, senior director at Dittus and managing director at Hill & Knowlton.

Dicking Around in the Airport

“In airport line women in flats look down on women In high platform heels teetering above them.” — CBS Political Director John Dickerson. This was a toss-up between “Unnecessary Tweet of the Day” and “Dicking Around” but we’re sticking with his feature name.

Reporter has fun with sugar

“Thanks for the helpful tip, bag of sugar!” — HuffPost‘s Jeff Young. If you can’t make it out clearly, the bag reads: “Great for baking.”

Mark Knoller doesn’t watch Army Wives?

“TV choices tonight include Cupcake Wars and Ice Road Truckers. Hard to choose.” — CBS White House Radio Reporter Mark Knoller in apparent wrenching internal conflict Sunday night.

We’re hanging on your every word, Howie

“Torn between Olympics tweeting and TV critics tweeting about Charlie Sheen, and Russell Brand mocking Palin. Both competitive sports.” — The Daily Beast/Newsweek, Daily Download and CNN’s Howard Kurtz.

Self-appointed media critic

“Judging by the people’s reaction, we are ready to vote out Obama and the media that cover him. #Onetermforallofthem.” — Short-lived Mitt Romney aide and former UN Spokesman Richard Grenell.

NPR’s Norris disses Ben & Jerry

“No disrespect to Ben & Jerry’s but you can keep your $6 ice cream cones. Two bucks will set you up nicely at DQ.” — NPR’s Michele Norris.

Press Sec. praises the Twitter Gods

“I got a warning email from @twitter within a minute of the first tweet from my hacked account going out. Amazing.” — Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) Comm. Director Ian Koski.

Interns Make “News” at Library of Congress

A press release from the Library of Congress this week reveals that their summer interns made several discoveries in their time at the Library. They say that they uncovered “more than 130 items” from their back catalogs. How exciting! Sadly, it was far less climactic than we had hoped. At the top of their list of findings is a previously unreleased recording session by Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee. Oh, you haven’t heard of them? Basically, they were the Justin Bieber of their day. At least they have SOME cultural relevance. It’s not like they uncovered some dusty old copies of an unreleased ABBA record. The list of other finds includes such oddities as “Stories About Animals” by Leo Tolstoy, memorabilia from the Newport Folk Festival and a copyright application for the Animate Toy Company’s “Bugville Games. In other words, a bunch of interns found a bunch of useless old scrap, so if the Library ever wants to have a yard sale, they can throw all this stuff in the nickel bin to get rid of it.

The Library of Congress lists more of the “treasures” at