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Posts Tagged ‘Mark Silva’

This Week In Pool Reports

Someone please give Mark Silva a vacation day! Pool reports from abroad read like a comedy of errors. Oh, and Bush has big plans to “do something” with earmarks. Hmm…

  • “Alighting from the aircraft, and looking tired, POTUS walked to the White House without saying anything to the waiting media. As he approached the building entrance, the sound of a barking, welcoming dog could be heard but the animal remained out of view. A cold and damp evening. A steady rain, which started about an hour before the president’s arrival had stopped when Marine One touched down. Your pooler is too wet and grumpy to muse about that.” — Rick Tomkins, UPI

  • “We were able to stand outside in a covered breezeway of the mess hall, and watch the vice president step out of the mess, fully dressed in suit and tie, and walk through the breezeway toward us speaking with a two-star general, Maj. Gen. David Rodriguez, commander of the 82nd Airborne Division, in camouflage-uniform. They walked toward us speaking cheerfully, but the VP did not appear inclined to even recognize us standing there at the end taking pictures and waiting for crumbs, so we asked, how was the mess? ‘Breakfast was excellent,’ said Cheney, passing on with a smile, at 7:37 am Bagram base time.” — Mark Silva, Chicago Tribune

  • “That said, our friendly base bus driver couldn’t find these Koele Barracks last night, after our planned brief stop at Bagram turned into a sleep-over. After we nearly had a collision on the tarmac with a fuel tanker, our bus wandered around the base in search of someone who knew where the barracks were. They were in a large section of the base where all these B-Huts are arranged chock-a-block in aisles filled with rainwater and mud and lined with soggy sandbags. This is the housing where most of the base soldiers live. ‘It’s like summer camp,’ one senior officer told us, ‘except you have to stay for a year.’ — Silva

  • “Bush said the economy was ‘cooking’ — an apparent up-tick from this morning, when it was ‘good.’ He also said he intended to ‘do something’ about earmarks in appropriations bills, and touched on education and health care. — Geoff Earle, New York Post

  • “The Monday morning Oman rush-hour paid a serious price for the passage of this motorcade — which lost one of its formal limousines en route to mechanical failure, with the motorcade stopping to rearrange passengers, and this was not long before the non-English speaking driver of the press pool van started receiving incoming cell phone calls with a musical ring.” — Silva

  • “The pool has had no words with the vice president on this day, which makes it no different, so far, from any other day of the weeklong tour of the Pacific Ocean that Cheney made last week. But poolers persist in requesting some interviews. He looks pretty chipper, near the end of a week-long odyssey.” — Silva

  • “He was wearing a blazer and slacks — looked like a greyish blazer to me, but then I’m somewhat color blind.” — Tomkins

  • “AF Two stopped for refueling in Singapore after experiencing some
    electrical problems following our departure from Sydney. Described as a power surge on the airplane, it had the effect of rendering our cabin electrical outlets inoperative, shutting down the galley – crackers and cheese were circulated in consolation – and cancelling the inflight film festival, though the film menu already had been limited by an airborne censor’s determination that “Idiocracy” contains sexually inappropriate content. And I always thought it was just a bad title.” — Silva

  • “Obviously, in the pool report on Kabul, the reference to the attack at Bagram being aimed at shaking the Pakistani govt should say the Afgan government. Been in both places and slept in barracks.” — Silva

  • This Week In Pool Reports

    In this week’s installment, Vice President Cheney is entertained by a bikini clad woman, Pres. Bush pigs out at Porker’s, the Imperial Palace is revealed to be a facade and it seems even the Japanese hates Yankees fans (kidding people. No hate mail please). And lets not forget Mark Silva’s 3,865 word pool report. Is that a new record?

  • “The flight to Guam had lasted longer than three hours, Jack Nicholson, Leonard DiCaprio, Matt Damon and Mark Whalberg starred in the midair show, The Departed, and the vice president arrived in apparent good cheer. And this was before the young woman wearing a bikini top and a hip-hugging skirt appeared on a riser toward the rear of the audience in the hangar. To our untrained eyes, she appeared to be a hula girl. But we were informed that she is a ‘chamorrita’ — which is an affectionate term for young women who dress like this in Guam, where natives are called ‘chamorras.’” — Mark Silva, Chicago Tribune

  • “POTUS left the convention center around 1:50 p.m., and a few short minutes later the motorcade came to a surprise halt in downtown Chattanooga outside Porker’s Bar-B-Que, a two-story brick place that evoked memories of the 50s, with Coca-Cola signs and some neon decor. As the name implies, it’s a barbecue joint. The hand-painted picture on the glass front window shows a pig reclining atop flames, above the motto: ‘We don’t squeal.’ (Your pooler could make the obvious joke about squealers and leaks, but she will refrain.)” — Sheryl Stolberg, New York Times

  • “At the Imperial Palace, just a few American reporters were escorted through the old bureaucratic warrens of the building, past peeling paint and busted pipes and through the service corridors up into the ceremonial show-case of the palace.” — Silva

  • “The press hotel is quite close to the embassy, and after arriving at the hotel we were greeted by some extremely loud sound trucks that were parked just outside some barricades that had much of the street outside the hotel closed. They were playing music and blaring chants, mostly in Japanese. They were extremely loud, and had to be audible at the nearby embassy. They dispersed after several minutes, however. But there was one unmistakable chant blaring from one of the trucks, in a Japanese accented male voice chanting in English: ‘Yankee Go Home, Yankee Go Home.’” — Silva

  • “Still sunny/freezing. But this time, as your pooler waited in the cold outside the Oval Office, she was entertained by sight of Barney and/or Miss Beazley, who ran around a bit in the snow-covered lawn, but were not at all interested in chasing after a ball that was thrown in their general direction by a member of the White House staff.” — Malia Rulon, Gannett News Service

  • This Week In Pool Reports

    In the week of long pool reports, the first dogs are not eating anti-freeze (we can all sleep better at night now); poolers narrowly escape frost bite, no tears for Anna Nicole and President Bush excels at math.

  • “Both Barney and Miss Beazley frolicked on the South Tundra as a 15-piece black motorcade assembled for the president’s fast ride to the Department of Homeland Security. This was an awfully cold and windy but also wonderfully clear and cloudless day, the sun warming the wintry gray-green turf of a lawn ringed with a frosting of snow from Tuesday evening’s dusting. The water in a steel dog bowl outside was iceless, suggesting that either they refill the bowl frequently or they’re feeding the first pooches antifreeze — I’m going with the frequent-refill theory.” — Mark Silva, Chicago Tribune

  • “No mention of the sad Anna Nicole Smith death story unfolding as we had waited here. No signs of TVs on inside the briefing room. A WH press aide who had been inside the briefing room said they had not discussed Smith’s passing.” — Silva

  • “An OTR at Blair House, with POTUS attending good-bye reception for Chief of Protocol Donald Burnham Ensenat. The president and first lady walked across Pennsylvania Avenue, arriving at 5:55 p.m., with the president wearing a tan cowboy hat. Poolers still had most of our fingers and toes when POTUS reemerged almost precisely an hour later, and walked back to the White House with the first lady and Senator Judd Gregg, R-N.H. And with that, we have a chilly lid.” — Rick Klein, Boston Globe

  • “The president then asked what the federal government can do. Cipolla: ‘I want to thank Mrs. Bush.’ That drew a presidential smirk, and laughter from all in the room. When one participant mentioned a $10 million private commitment that has already been secured, Bush quickly pointed out: ‘You’re $990 million short.’ Kempthorne chimed in: ‘You can all see that cabinet meetings are lively.’” — Klein

  • “As we left, POTUS recognized the presence of NBC’s David Gregory, the peacock network’s White House correspondent/substitute Today show host. The dialogue, as best I can tell from somewhat muffled recording. POTUS: ‘Where you been?’ MR. GREGORY: ‘I’m here.’ POTUS: ‘You’re a big shot. You’re trying to get in the big time. You’re leaving us. Leave no administration behind. Let us know when you get to be like the ‘Today’ show thing and all that, that way we can say we knew you when, we knew him when.’” — Ken Herman, Cox Newspapers

  • “Note: For Any Washingtonian that may read this pool report — If you’re driving on, say, the Baltimore-Washington Parkway or, maybe, I-395 on a Sunday, about 11 a.m., and 12 black SUVs and vans with tinted windows and some bikes strapped on back try to merge into traffic, you, uh, oughta go ahead and let ‘em in (cuz? one of those SUV’s holds a swarm of men with a whole buncha big guns). Just FYI.” — Joseph Curl, Washington Times

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