June 23, 2010


  1. . . . BP CEO Tony Hayward ("cherub-cheeked," as The New York Times described him) has been. He’s made some bad PR blunders regarding the gulf oil spill. Now he’s been sent to the woodshed and the company no longer wants him out front representing the oil giant.
  2. . . . He was caught on video last weekend on his yacht off the British coast, taking part in a race in "clean water," as ABC’s Jake Tapper referred to it. BP spokesman Robert Wine explained that he was spending some time with his family and that it was his first break since April 20 when the Deepwater Horizon oil rig exploded.
  3. . . . Those Capitol Hill hearings last week must’ve done him in. They were pretty brutal.
  4. . . . All this while people and wildlife in the gulf are suffering the effects of the spill.
  5. . . . There he was on a sailboat, enjoying life on the water up north and there they were down south, cleaning up tar balls on the beach and wiping thick guck off of pelicans.
  6. . . . And President Obama was out playing a few links of golf on a military installation course over the wekend. Some said that wasn’t very appropriate.
  7. . . . What, should Hayward and Obama be sitting around and self-flaggellating? Should they be in church praying for the mess to automatically go away? Or should they be dunked in a big, thick vat of the stuff and forced to fend for themselves while their flesh is burning?
  8. . . . It’s all terrible but life goes on.
  9. . . . The guy who has been appearing in the newspaper ads for BP’s Making This Right PR ad campaign, Darryl Willis, is now on TV.
  10. . . . He’s the claims adjustor and says in the PSA/Commercial ". . . I’m responsible for overseeing BP’s claims process in the Gulf Coast. I was born and raised in Louisiana. My mother lost her home to Hurricane Katrina. Afterwards, she experienced enormous frustration. So I know first-hand that when tragedy strikes on a scale like this, people need help without a lot of hassles."
  11. . . . He’s seems more believable, and local. He’s got that New Orleans’ accent too, so he seems like a resident.
  12. . . . Hmm. Seems a bit too commercial for me. Crossing the lines from PR image maker to "legitimate" news source. Not right.
  13. . . . PREDICTION: BP will eventually go bankrupt. How are they gonna pay all those claims and fines?
  14. . . . The well’s bound to run dry.
  15. "Happy Father’s Day," said the local sports anchor at the beginning of his morning report last Sunday.
  16. . . . I heard a network anchor or two sign off their broadcasts with the same sentiment on the Friday night before the "holiday."
  17. . . . Everybody everywhere was wishing everyone Happy Father’s Day.
  18. . . . JUST ASKING: Since when did Father’s Day become something you’d say to a broad audience? To me it’s always been a more personal thing, something you would say directly to your father or somebody’s dad .
  19. . . . It’s not the same thing as saying Merry Christmas, for crissakes.
  20. . . . The only reason they invented it was to sell more Hallmark cards, if you ask me.
  21. . . . Crass commercialism.
  22. INCIDENT: Coming to work on a Sunday morning I caught a cab. The driver was very talkative and inquisitive; it rubbed me the wrong way. Asking me all kinds of questions about where I worked and what it was like, like it was any of his business.
  23. . . . Midway to my destination he pulled over and yelled to a young woman standing on a corner and asked if she needed a cab. Odd, I thought. There was a little back and forth between the two because, I assume, she saw a passenger in the cab already (me) and was probably wondering why he was making himself available and hawking a fare.
  24. . . . I asked him if this was still allowed since the rules have changed in the District about multiple pickups by one cab driver. He said as long as the original passenger was asked and didn’t mind that it was alright to do.
  25. . . . FACT: I wasn’t asked. He just told me he was pulling over and was gonna ask her if she needed a ride.
  26. . . . While he was lolling around in the street, I told him I was in a bit of a hurry.
  27. . . . The woman was taking her good old time getting to the cab plus she was carrying several cups of coffee at the same time.
  28. . . . She finally got it in (slowly), didn’t say a word. I purposely didn’t say anything because I wanted to see if she might say anything, like “thank you” to either the cab driver or me.
  29. . . . Didn’t happen, socially inept.
  30. . . . When I finally reached my destination the fare was $12.50 - much more than I usually pay for the trip.
  31. . . . I argued with the cab driver and told him what I usually pay and that’s what I wound up paying.
  32. . . . I slammed the door good and hard as I got out of the cab.
  33. . . . I should’ve gotten his number and reported him to the commission. That would’ve shut him and his dumb routine up.
  34. Will Calista Flockhart (45) take care of Harrison Ford (67)in his old age, like when he’s 87 and she’s 65? Is 22 years between siblings a good idea at this age? Just wondering.
  35. Liz Cheney is always introduced on TV (in this case, on Fox News Sunday) as former "State Department official." She’s also active in the Republican Party and co-founder of Keep America Safe, an organization which promotes conservative causes on national security issues.
  36. . . . And she’s Dick Cheney’s daughter.
  37. . . . What is her current credential and why is she never identified as, say, a political pundit, a conservative Republican?
  38. . . . What makes her relevant as a "roundtable" participant?
  39. "A CHAIR IS STILL A CHAIR." That’s what Helen Thomas’s front-row seat remains in the White House Press Briefing room. Thomas is gone and the chair is still unoccupied, just sitting there.
  40. . . . Word is that Major Garrett, "senior White House correspondent" for the Fox News Channel, will get to sit there. But now along comes Bloomberg News. They say it shouldn’t be given to Fox simply because of seniority and that they’ve been covering the White House full-time before Fox News ever existed.
  41. . . . So we’ll have to see who gets to sit in that front-row vaunted seat.
  42. The 64th Annual Tony Awards on CBS didn’t pull great ratings - 7.5 million. (It was up against the NBA playoffs featuring the Lakers and the Celtics.)
  43. . . . I tuned out when host Sean Hayes (Will & Grace on TV-Promises, Promises on Broadway) appeared on stage after a commercial break dressed in drag like Little Orphan Annie. It wasn’t that funny, merely a sight gag.
  44. . . . He’s an acquired taste, if you ask me.
  45. SURPRISED. That Charles Osgood, host of CBS’s Sunday Morning, says "twenty ten" when mentioning the year we’re in at the top of the show after he says what’s on the agenda that day instead of "two thousand ten." It seems that with the traditional formality and long-running nature of the program that he would say the latter rather than a shortened term for the year.
  46. . . . Younger people say it that way, like Eun Yang of News4 Washington.
  47. . . . Charles Kuralt would’ve said "two thousand ten," that’s my guess.
  48. Arnold Schwarzenegger is in an upcoming movie - The Expendables, with Sylvester Stallone, about a group of missionaries who are recruited to overthrow a South American dictator. They’re showing it at the movies now as a trailer.
  49. . . . Can he do that? Is it legal?
  50. . . . I thought political people can’t be in the movies while they’re still in office. Who made the exception for him?
  51. . . . Or am I out of date on this one?
  52. The media is referring to the gulf oil spill like they did the Iran hostage crisis, indicating how many days have gone by since it happened. At this writing it’s Day 65.
  53. . . . The hostage crisis eventually spawned ABC’s Nightline program. During the early days the late-night news special featuring Ted Koppel as anchor was called The Iran Crisis: America Held Hostage, Day ***. The number of days in that standoff reached 444.!
  54. . . . Let’s hope the oil doesn’t gush that long.
  55. Meg Whitman (Republican), who won the California governor primary last week, reminded me of Bette Davis’s character Margo Channing in All About Eve with her hair parted on the left and that high forehead. Very 50s-ish. (She’ll be running against Jerry Brown, the former two-term governor of the state, in November. )
  56. . . . She’s a former CEO and president of eBay and one of many women who won on primary election night. Carly Fiorina, another Republican and former CEO (of Hewlett-Packard) and executive VP of AT&T, is running for a Senate seat and won. She’s the one who was caught on an open mike quoting what a friend said of her opponent Barbara Boxer’s hairstyle, calling it "so yesterday," and chuckling.
  57. . . . There was no cat fight, however, between the two. Fiorina later told Chris Wallace on Fox News Sunday that she (Fiorina) "gave people the opportunity to talk about something petty and superficial" and that this was a serious election year about serious issues.
  58. . . . Good, then keep your mouth shut next time and stop making fun of people.
  59. That "commoner-personal trainer" guy (Daniel Westling) who married Sweden’s Crown Princess Victoria looked like Al Franken (remember him?) or Clark Kent (slicked down hair) with those nerdy, wide-framed glasses on at that elaborate wedding in Stockholm.
  60. . . . He shed a tear or two; you could see him wiping his eye. How tender.
  61. . . . He seemed like a lackey to me: At one point you could see him adjusting her wedding gown train.
  62. OBSERVED: Prince William is losing his hair rapidly. So sad, especially at such a young age (28).
  63. Mr. Big Stuff, in seeing a recent picture of Barbra Streisand, said he couldn’t understand what people saw in her. Didn’t she do that movie Lentil a long while back
  64. . . . Ha Ha Ha. He meant Yentl, her 1983 movie about a Jewish girl (Streisand) who disguises herself as a boy in order to enter religious training. (Papa, Can You Hear Me? was the big song from that film.)
  65. REMEMBER: The world’s not gonna get any better because of Anderson Cooper, no matter what soapbox he’s on. Currently he’s Keeping Them Honest in the gulf and is very upset because no one from BP will appear on his CNN program, AC360.
  66. . . . He’s angry every night and has a scowl on his face.
  67. . . . My mother is sick of the oil spill all the time and all of the gulf news on every channel. She wants more variety out of her television programming.
  68. . . . "They jam it down your throat," she angrily complained. "They need to put something else on the TV."
  69. "I’m the Pied Piper, follow me..."
  70. . . . UH ... The Pied Piper - Crispian St. Peters, on Jamie Records, 1966. Robin Peter Smith (real name) died June 8 at his home in Swanley, Kent, England, at the age of 71 after a long illness. It was a big hit back in the mid-sixties; everyone was singing it.



© Rocci Fisch/Random Thoughts

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