It’s payback time. Finally, I get to be on the other side of the camera and notebook from Mr. Fishbowl himself: Politico’s Patrick Gavin. Once a reporter I avoided like the plague at parties as he lurked around ballrooms with his camera and note pad, he is now someone I’m seeking for guidance as I start this new gig. So I figured it was symbolic to make Gavin my first FishbowlDC Interview.

Thankfully I didn’t have to chase him down and force him to cooperate. He kindly obliged.

gq pietras, gavin, henry-3.jpg If you were a carbonated beverage which would you be? Perrier. It’s big on expectations, low on reality.

How often do you Google yourself? Unfortunately, there’s another Patrick Gavin out there who specializes in — you guessed it — Search Engine Optimization, so I lost that battle years ago.

Did you see “Twilight” and “New Moon?” If so, who is more your type,Edward or Jacob? Negative. Although I did have a crush on Kristen Stewart until I heard her being interviewed. She was nearly as annoying as Ellen Page.

Who would you rather have dinner with – First Lady Michelle Obama or Bestselling Author Sarah Palin? Palin, only so I could try to convince her to get her to give up her Facebook page and pen an online diary for CLICK.

What swear word do you use most often? Salahi.

If you were trapped on a deserted island, which public official would you want to be trapped with and why? Mike Allen. Because then I’d know that POLITICO would do anything to come and rescue us. And by us, I mean, him. [Mike Allen is a public official? Wow. We weren't aware.]

Who was your mentor? I credit a seventh-grade French teacher,seventh-grade math teacher,eighth-grade English teacher, a junior high principal and a tenth-grade European History teacher for instilling some good things in me. Also: Rod Blagojevich.

See more Payback for Patrick after the jump…


When did you last cry and why? Have you not seen this thing?

What’s the best advice you ever received in the course of your career?When I was at The Brookings Institution, Jonathan Rauch told me,”Breaking into journalism is like selling a $1 million glass of lemonade. It’s tough to do but you only need to sell one.”

What’s your most embarrassing career moment? Chasing after Sarah Palin
and getting beat up by Rep. Peter King [R-N.Y.] are two things I’ve yet to come to terms with.

Who is your favorite working journalist? Why everyone wouldn’t answer Raghubir Goyal and Lester Kinsolving to this question is beyond me.

What’s the biggest scoop you’ve ever had?
I once Tweeted that the flushing strength of toilets at my wedding venue was strong. At the time, that seemed like a pretty big deal.