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Posts Tagged ‘Neil King’

WHCD Tick Tock

We’re recapping the White House Correspondents’ Dinner from Saturday night with a special Tick Tock. Enjoy as we take you through the night.

By Betsy Rothstein, Peter Ogburn and Eddie Scarry

5:30 p.m.: I meet up with Eddie at a shitty McDonald’s in Adams Morgan as the sky opens up to a downpour. Eddie is visibly pissed. He had his umbrella in hand and left it since (he says) weather reports declared that it wouldn’t rain until around 11 p.m. That’s right, we start the evening with Eddie blaming the media.

5:45 p.m. Peter, Eddie and I convene at the Washington Hilton bar to inhale Cokes as we mentally prepare our plan of attack for the evening.

6 p.m. We approach the escalators and are turned away from going downstairs because we need to show the security man a copy of our invitation. He says he knows its stupid, but it’s the way it is. Our knight in shining armor, HuffPost‘s Ryan Grim approaches and hands me what is comparable to contraband — a photocopy invitation of one of the pre-parties. He has several copies.

6 :10 p.m. And we’re in. We’ve entered the Atlantic/NJ/CBS pre-party, where the star of the evening is actress Claire Danes. She’s there as a guest of CBS “Face the Nation” host Bob Schieffer. Her brother tags along. Nonetheless, Schieffer stays close by Danes. Asked if he has the best guest of the night, he says, “I mean, it’s Claire Danes, what more do I need to say?”

6:19 p.m. Outdoor parties are the loser of the evening. It’s cold, damp and people are on a mad hunt for the bars. But we also spot our first WHCD big butt of the night; or perhaps that’s just an ill-fitting coat.

6:34 p.m. Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) enters Atlantic fest. Mother Jones and MSNBC Contributor David Corn is here with the lead singer of OK GO. This was the big q of the night at this party — who is David Corn with? NJ Publicist Taylor West tells me FishbowlDC had better get to the bottom of this.

6:40 p.m. We’re now mingling out in the hallway, watching Bloomberg’s Stephanie Green interview model Elle MacPherson, who is wearing a high slitted sleeveless black gown, similar to what Angelina Jolie wore to the Oscars. We hear Stephanie conclude her interview by saying, “Thank you so much. I love your underwear!” Whoa! What? We asked Stephanie if she had said what we thought she did. She said what many inevitably say to reporters: “You’re not quoting me on this, are you?”

6:42 p.m. The Washington Examiner‘s Nikki Schwab gives Eddie the first cold shoulder of the day — it’s actually FBDC’s second bout of coldness from her in a 24-hour time frame. Don’t worry, there will be more.

6:43 p.m. Shock of all shocks, Politico‘s Mike Allen has his face buried in his Blackberry.

6:44 p.m. We wander into the TWT reception hoping to meet Uggie the dog and hear he was just there and just left. We meet TWT‘s Kerry Picket and her boyfriend, whom the blond towers over.  The party ironically serves Mexican food. WSJ‘s Neil King is here with his daughter Lilly.

7 p.m. Next stop: Bloomberg reception, where NY Mayor Mike Bloomberg is holding court in the center of the room in a purple bow-tie. A partygoer sees a black woman across the room and asks, “Is that Michelle Obama?” Actor Kevin Spacey is also here and singer Alicia Keys. Guests attack them for photographs like a bunch of star-crazed idiots.

7:10 p.m. Back out in the hallway, Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer asks Peter if he’s “just here to watch the hotties go by.”

7:15 p.m. We run into Pollster Frank Luntz, who’s dressed in a goofy striped suit and his signature sneakers. He’s miserable, he says. “Too many people, too chaotic. That said, there’s nothing like it.” He answers questions about his sneakers, saying that at this point he has maybe 35 pairs. He has three homes so he says he has to split them up. Luntz surmises by the end of the year he’ll have between 40 and 50 pairs. He explains that when he worked for a previous network they made him wear a tie, which he found so confining. So he decided they can force him from the neck up but from the feet down? That area is all his. No idea who owns the area between his neck and feet.

7:17 p.m. Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell says it’s “great to see so many young people here.” He forgets he’s not at a campaign rally.

7:20 p.m. Took a bathroom break. Walked in behind Schieffer. Walked out behind Luntz.

7:24 p.m. Lady drops tray of wine glasses. They shatter. Glass everywhere. She’s all nonchalant about it. No one hurt.

7:25 p.m.: James Davis, spokesman for the GOP Convention in Tampa, is bragging to Politico‘s Charlie Mahtesian that he ate 11 onions in 8 minutes during last year’s Vidalia Onion eating contest, which he nearly won. Because of the WHCA dinner, he’s missing this year’s onion-eating contest.

7:26 p.m.: HuffPost‘s Laura Bassett “on a mission” to find actress Reese Witherspoon. Just saw lead actress from “B in Apartment 3″ have to find out her name.

7:27 p.m.: NYT‘s Brian Stelter saunters by holding hands with his girlfriend, who has donned a bright red dress. “She is cute,” says Eddie. And we spot another set of WHCD big butts.

7:28 p.m. Rep. Fred Upton‘s niece, model Kate Upton, walks by. Heads turn. Onlookers try to figure out who she is. Because she looks like SOMEONE. Peter says he’s going to text his neighbor’s horny son to find out who she is.

7:29 p.m.: MSNBC Commentator Richard Wolffe escorting Chef Jose Andres for the second night in a row. Andres is responsible for the outstanding fare at The Atlantic‘s David Bradley‘s Friday night soiree that included things like crushed beat on toast and crispy avocado.

7:30 p.m. The balding gentleman with Elle MacPherson casually places his hand on her ass on their way down the hallway toward the ballroom.

7: 40 p.m. Eyes turn as CBS Chief White House Norah O’Donnell walks by in a long, bright yellow sequined dress that’s scooped out low in the back. Bystanders remark favorably on her attire. On her arm was Chef Geoff (Mr. Norah O’Donnell) escorting her. No one remarked on his tux.

7:42 p.m. Woody Harrelson seen leaving reception. Corona still in hand. Though he spent much of the weekend glued to Steve Schmidt‘s side, we hear he was flirting heavily with certain female reporters over the weekend.

7:43 p.m.: Always the charmer, Eddie rushes up to actress Kerry Washington, whose wearing a lovely long peach gown, and tells her how great she looks. Washington stars in the new series “Scandal” in which she plays a lawyer who has slept with the President of the United States.

7:44 p.m. Tom Hanks‘s son, Colin, who is the spitting image of his father, is mobbed by partygoers and friends in the hallway.

7:45 p.m. Garden brunch extraordinaire Tammy Haddad heads toward the ballroom with the 4’11” Daniel Radcliffe in a sparkly red and black blazer.

 

 

NYT’s Carl Hulse Rocks the House

Over the weekend, The Native Makers, the rock band featuring Carl Hulse on the drums, rocked Capitol Hill in an event labeled Rock and Roll Apocalypse. Hulse, the NYT Deputy Bureau Chief, ripped through a series of cover songs at the 18th Amendment on Capitol Hill. The playlist leaned heavily on the Rolling Stones and other classic rock favorites. In a bizarre stage setup, the band was forced to play directly beneath a giant TV playing a “Rocky” movie marathon. The howls of Grateful Dead cover songs provided a very unique soundtrack to Rocky Balboa’s defeat of Clubber Lang.

Jamming in the crowd were WSJ’s Neil King with his wife, Shalaigh Murray , who is now communications director for VPOTUS. Also spotted: HuffPost’s Arthur Delaney, WaPo’s Mike DeBonis and Susan G. Komen’s Kiki Ryan with Tim Burger. Quinn Gillespie & Associates was well repped with both John Feehery and Jim Manley in attendance in a marked sign of bipartisanship.

 

Press-ing Early Morning Matters

Current TV’s newest star doesn’t swear much, but when he does, “shit” is at the top of his profanity repertoire. The word came flying out of his mouth this morning as he spilled Greek yogurt on his desk during a commercial break. Somehow he let me into his freezing Capitol Hill radio den for three and a half hours to observe.

“Oh shit, oh God,” he said.

Lucky for Bill Press, his new employer, Current TV, which is now simulcasting his morning radio show, has an eight-second delay if it ever happens while on air. This morning the network ran his radio program for the first time. The upshot: More exposure for his show with a budding network; brand new viewers who call in from around the nation from places like York, Pa. and Hollywood, Calif. The downside: “MSNBC hasn’t called in three weeks,” said Press, noting that the network that most frequently invited him on as a guest won’t likely call again anytime soon, nor will Fox News. Press doesn’t seem to mind. “The word [Current TV President] David Bohrman kept using was voyeuristic,” he tells me in an interview after the show, explaining the premise behind airing his radio show on TV. “I’m now the morning show on Current TV and happy as a clam.”

The cursing came during a commercial break as Press gulped down yogurt and sipped on coffee out of a plastic black and white Current TV thermos.

To be clear, the network ought to be more fearful of Press’s longtime producer Peter Ogburn, who also happens to be a FishbowlDC Contributor. He may glare me down while I write this, but anyone who knows Ogburn even a little knows that his language is riddled with profanity so intense that we’re not going to be able to repeat it here lest his small children read FishbowlDC this afternoon, which they have been prone to do with their milk and cookies. Needless to say, with him “shit” is the least of Current TV’s worries.

The Bill Press team, which consists of Ogburn and Dan Henning, starts obscenely early. They’re in well before 6 a.m. when everything kicks off. Airing Press’s radio program on TV doesn’t require many changes — the biggest is powder. Each of the men must don powder because, says the Current TV publicist on hand, who wants to see shiny heads?

Press was a little more orange-hued than he may have originally intended this morning. A viewer wrote on Twitter, “Just turned Current TV on — it’s a giant orange BP head. Looks like he just left the tanning booth.” WaPo national political reporter Nia-Malika Henderson, a guest in studio this morning, also noticed Press’s sun-kissed face and said he looked like Soul Man. The powder might explain things. The one he used was called “Sandy.” Ogburn begrudgingly “schmeared” the gunk on at about 5:40 a.m., saying, “I’m going to look like Divine when this is over.” He thought better of it. “I’m going to look like the world’s cheapest prostitute.”

Henning returns from powdering himself and strangely looks to Ogburn for approval. “Peter, does my makeup look alright? I don’t look like a cheap whore do I?” Ogburn replies, “Well, Dan….” his voice trails off in a non-response.

Ogburn doesn’t necessarily like having the cameras peer down on him during the show, but he’s learning to accept what it feels like to be a Kardashian. “That shit is always on me,” he says with a glance toward the corner camera. “It’s terrifying.”

In segment two, Press dons a dark Trayvon Martin-inspired hoodie (as pictured above), which apparently went over swimmingly in the Los Angeles control room… Read more

Morning Chatter

Quotes of the Day

“Pug wearing regal #USA sweater on red carpet. Looking exquisite. #Oscars” — NBC’s Luke Russert with the accompanying picture.

The Lost Washington Weekend

“Sunday mornings in Adams Morgan smell like broken dreams” — Bright Young Thing‘s Steve Place. Photographer Frank Turner replied, “Piss beer, puke waste.”

The Oscar Media Critics

“E! sucking really bad now, with party talk. It’s like NASCAR rain delay talk…boring. Ugh, guess we’ll change to ABC.” — The Washington Examiner‘s Paul Bedard.

“So the journo updates from Rick Santorum‘s townhall combined with Oscar tweets are gonna make for one weird Twitter stream.” — Yahoo! News’s Chris Moody.

“There is no comparison. E Red Carpet is SOOOO much better than ABC. #Oscars2012″ — SKDKnickerbocker and CNN Commentator Hilary Rosen.

“My limo is stuck behind Clooney‘s on the way to the red carpet. #annoyingOscartweets” — WSJ‘s Neil King, whose doppelganger is Clooney.

“I love Michelle Williams but seriously, Louis Vuitton, why even make a dress that ugly? Total fail. Thank goodness she a radiant beauty.” — Socialite and philanthropic advocate Katherine Kennedy.

“Why did *E* shoot Tina Fey from her left?! Terrible. Don’t they know about the gash? That’s just mean. Jerks.” — Freelance videographer Liz Glover.

“M in P sucked. And I think the young guy in Moneyball should have won best actor.” — Hollywood on the Potomac’s and D.C. publicist Janet Donovan.

“Glenn Close — love the blazer!!!!!” — ABC7′s Jummy Olabanji. Kennedy agrees, adding, “Wow! Glenn Close looks absolutely perfect! Stunning and totally age appropriate– ladies take note!”

“You want a good comedy bit? Spill something on a real deal star on the carpet and legit ruin their night. Seacrest is low hanging fruit.” — WaPo Express‘s Clinton Yates.

Ultra-feminist makes fun of fat women

“No one has the balls to criticize fat women on red carpet. #oscars” — GOP communications operative Trey Ditto, clearly the ultimate feminist.

Doocy or Douchey?

“Thanks very much for the nice words…YOU’RE a great guy for sending a compliment out, unprompted!
Thx.” — Fox & Friend’s Steve Doocy. What prompted such dripping gratitude? This nauseating tweet from a follower in Michigan: “Mr. Doocy, we consider you to be one of the nicest, most genuine human beings on the planet. Thanks for your good work!”

Kind of like Washington’s flacks right?

“Best part of watching E! right now, seeing the red carpet handlers trying to look SO important behind the “stars.” #Oscars”  — NBC’s Russert.

Redheaded journo rethinks red attire

Emma Stone -redhead rocking the deep maroon. Making me rethink my no red rule. #Oscar.” — ABC News’s Karen Travers.

Irony is…“Heavy on the Sinatra at this Santorum event. Sinatra who supported Kennedy whose speech almost made Santorum throw up #fullcircle” — Reuter’s campaign reporter Sam Youngman.

Just what we need, more high journos…“Working on a video for a very cool high journalism program here in DC.” — NBC Cameraman Jim Long in today’s WTF tweet.

A Zen Chuck Todd

“To all overworked Washingtonians. Step outside and look up. Amazingly clear night for DC. Tons of stars visible.” — NBC’s Chuck Todd.

An 8-year-old learns to lie

“Our 8 yr old sees George Clooney & sez, “He looks a little like you.” Allowance goes from $2 a week to AmEx Platinum card.” — NPR‘s Scott Simon.

 

Separated at Birth: WSJ’s Neil King

Who wouldn’t want to be compared to Clooney? The pairing is WSJ politics scribe Neil King, who formerly covered oil, OPEC and international energy issues, and George Clooney. Born and raised in Boulder, Colo., King is married to VP Biden‘s Communications Officer Shailagh Murray, formerly a political reporter at WaPo. He has worked out of the Washington bureau since 1999.

A Mindmeld of Mystery

After several days of missing Politico Playbook’s “Mindmeld” feature, it surfaced again last week in a lead item. “ROMNEY CAMPAIGN MINDMELD” the headline blared. And in a Daily Caller story this morning on Media Matters for America, the phrase again appeared. Here’s how they used it in a sentence. “But at times there has seemed to be a kind of mind meld between the Obama political team and Media Matters.”

Personally we couldn’t be more excited that “mindmeld” is making its way into the zeitgeist (h/t Mike Allen.) Here in the Fishbowl we use it as both a noun and a verb, for anything from a headache to uber Publicist Wendy Gordon adding a new photoshopped picture of herself to her Facebook page or just anything that profoundly confuses us. I’ve also been considering using it as a torture method for Peter and Eddie. And yet… it is still by virtue a media mystery.

The feature dates back to Playbook circa 2008. Fortunately we were able to obtain further information on “Mindmeld” straight from the horses mouth: “The feature aims to illuminate what officials are actually thinking, but might not say from the podium. If we could give truth serum to top aides, this is what would be on their minds — their theory, reasoning, viewpoint,” Allen explained to FishbowlDC.

But some question the concept of Mindmeld, insisting that it just makes Allen a puppeteer for the Obama Administration, the Romney campaign or whoever else wants to “interpret” what’s happening.

WSJ‘s Neil King bravely tried his hand at Mindmeldian interpretation last week, which, when you think about it, is quite deep. So this is King translating Allen translating Romney. In a word: mindblowing.

NYT’s Hulse Gets Promoted

Longtime Capitol Hill reporter for NYT Carl Hulse has landed the job of NYT Deputy DC Bureau Chief. A memo went out this morning.

Capitol Hill is rather excited about it. “A very big congrats to @hillhulse for his well deserved promotion to NY Times Deputy DC Bureau Chief,” wrote Brad Dayspring, Communications Director for House Maj. Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.).

Hulse remarked to FishbowlDC: “I will miss reporting and life in the Capitol but this will be fun and challenging. Hopefully more fun than challenge. David is great and we will be aggressive in pursuing the news.” (Hulse is referring to NYT Washington Bureau Chief David Leonhardt.)

Congratulations to Hulse.

A few words from his fan club…

Politico‘s Jake Sherman: “Congrats dude.”

WSJ‘s Neil King: “Congrats to @hillhulse for his ascendance to NYT Washington deputy bureau chief.”

Slate‘s Dave Weigel: “Win.”

NYT investigative reporter Michael Luo: “Congrats to NYT’s @hillhulse for his promotion to deputy Washington bureau chief. Big shoes to fill, tho, for us on Capitol Hill…”

ABC’s Rick Klein: “So @hillhulse is now @nytimes management? Good luck to all of us, but Mayor of Capitol Hill still = preferred title.”

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