The American political elite are enviable in so many ways. Doesn’t everyone wish they had a really good-looking family, like Dick Gephardt’s? Or a culturally sensitive patriarch, like Karl Rove? Perhaps there is more admiration for our great athletes — like Yankees players Mike Mussina and Alex Rodriguez, who both have tons of fans — even if Jeff Gannon isn’t one. In any case, just sit back and have a beer like Tim Russert, or go Patrick Kennedy-style with an iced tea — there’s lots more wonk’d after the jump.
There’s no way that baseball hats and sunglasses can keep any celebs from getting wonk’d by you hardworking tipsters. Once you’ve discovered their charade, email us, with “Wonk’d” or “Sighting” in the subject line (and the name of the “brity” that should have known better). You keep a sendin’, we’ll keep a postin’, and they’ll keep pretendin’ to be surprised when they’re spotted.
* Mr. Dick Gephardt was celebrating Fathers’ Day with his ridiculously attractive family at Brio restaurant in Tysons Corner Mall. From the looks of things, he was the happy recipient of many colorful gifts, including some gold balloons!
* Bumped into Karl Rove at the National Gallery on Fathers’ Day. He was enthusiastically discussing a few of the pieces in the American art wing with members of his group, none of whom I could recognize. I saw them again at the Micro Gallery near the main entrance. I never would have pictured him as an art fan.
* Last Saturday [6/17], while dining at Cafe Milano, I saw 3 Yankees players: Randy Johnson (with someone who looked to be a family member), Mike Mussina, and Alex Rodriguez (with wife and another player I didn’t recognize). They were all sitting at different tables. A-rod: so gorgeous in real life.
* Jeff Gannon was at the Washington Nationals game on Sunday [6/18]. I was sitting a few rows behind him in the upper deck. Nothing unusual to report, except that he is definitely not a New York Yankees fan.
* Saw Patrick Kennedy at Tortilla Coast evening of Monday, 6/19. He was wearing a green polo, shorts, sneakers, and NOT drinking. He was shaking hands with people, sat down for about 20 minutes then left with an aide. The most scandalous aspect: his collar was popped.
* Last Friday, 6/16, saw Tim Russert drinking a Heineken, all by his lonesome, at the Irish Times. Spent at least an hour furiously pounding away on his Blackberry while sipping beer.
* Denny Hastert, 6/15/06, at Old Ebbitt Grill for dinner. His body guards/Secret Service dudes must have all had some bad crab cakes, because they hit the bathroom in speedy succession. I thought it was to clear it for him, but he never made the trip to the throne.
* Yesterday [6/19] morning I was at Omaha’s Eppley Airfield for a 6 AM flight to D.C. when I noticed the GOP’s latest self-funded darling and senatorial candidate, Pete Ricketts. Within moments, there was a Ben Nelson sighting. Seeing as there are only two direct flights from Omaha to D.C., both of which are flown using the same airplane, it was not that surprising to see the two Senate candidates on the same flight. The part that makes this sighting noteworthy is that the Benator’s seat was directly behind Pete’s! As far as I could tell, and I was sitting only three rows away, the two did not say a single word to each other. It’s ironic that they could not find something to discuss as they agree on about 70% of the issues.
* There must have been something going on at the Capitol Hill Club tonight [6/21]. I came out of the Capitol South metro station a bit before 9pm and saw Lindsey Graham walking down First Street, and Ralph Hall getting into his waiting car.
* Nearly ran over Mark Shields with a shopping cart at the Safeway on Connecticut Ave in Chevy Chase [6/19]. He was headed toward the Rx counter to see if his prescription had been filled.
* I saw Sen. Mary Landrieu at the Harris Teeter in Pentagon City on Saturday, June 17, around 3 pm. She was alone and checked out with two carts worth of groceries, including a big bag of stuff from Bed Bath & Beyond. Very casual, and calm, in a yellow polo shirt and light khakis.
* Saw Bob Novak leaving the Army Navy Club around 2:30 [6/16] with a mysterious Tony Snow look-alike (but I don’t think it was actually Tony).
* I practically ran into John Walsh walking through the halls of Rayburn today [6/21]. He was wearing dark sunglasses inside, probably to deflect the bright lights of the hallways, I assume — but with a voice I would recognize anywhere
* I saw James Carville arriving at Gate 31 of National Airport last Thursday morning [6/15]. He was wearing a dark blue T-shirt, dark tan khakis, and sneakers, and he was carrying an XM tote. He may be a man of the people, but since almost everyone else got off after him, I’m assuming he flies first class. Then again, he may need the space. Dude looks to be a good 6’4″ or taller.
* John Kerry showed up to his Yale College Reunion luncheon, last week. Didn’t mingle or acknowledge anyone. Just grabbed some lunch. The guy sitting next to me was peeved because he’d raised a million bucks for him and never got a thank you.
* On Tuesday [6/20] I ran into Olympic Gold Medalist Joey Cheek, who was window shopping on M Street in Georgetown with his girlfriend, a GW student. I first recognized him by his perfect hair. I used to assume his hair was only that perfect when surrounded by professional stylists on a photo shoot — guess not! It looks that good even when he’s just out on the street. Damn him.
* Saw Newt Gingrich walking toward the intersection of 17th and Pennsylvania by the White House after lunch today [6/22]. He just seemed kind of dorky and vulnerable to me, not scary.
* Donna Brazile at Frager’s hardware store on Sunday [6/11] afternoon around 3 buying mulch.