Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Only in Washington

Last night was the President's State of the Union address. For the uninformed (trust me, you're better off that way), this is a constitutionally required statement to Congress and the American people where he basically lays out how he thinks (this in itself something of an oxymoron when referring to W.) things are going with regards to America's interests, both domestic and foreign, and how he thinks (again, those two words look very strange together. as if they should be followed by: "as little as possible") things should go over the course of the next year.

I'm not gonna bore you with the content - partly because it has dominated my classes over the course of today and I've had quite enough THANK YOU. And partly because, despite being 5338 words and an hour in length he pretty much managed to avoid saying anything about anything. At one point my ears did prick up when he mention "human-animal hybrids" because, having seen The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe, I think the world would be much livelier with a few centaurs and fawns trotting around. Sadly, Georgie wasn't coming out in favour of such things. Ooh, I've just thought - they'd be a bugger to give birth to wouldn't they? Certainly put an end to the debate over which hurts more, childbirth or being kicked in the...... anyways.

I digress. In the spirit of the occasion, despite not really having much interest in what he had to say, Katie and I decided to pop down to The Hawk and Dove on Capitol Hill, supposedly a hangout for congressional staffers, to sample the atmosphere. People cheered occasionally, people clapped occasionally and I rolled my eyes frequently. I do love it when Bush says "nucular" though. Kinda makes it tough to take him seriously when he's talking about the idea of nailing Iran.

Following the speech, we managed to grab a seat at the bar for a post-mortem and had been chatting for a while when we were approached by a woman who was immediately recognizable as British by her "umm"s, "ah"s and "do excuse me, I do apologize for interrupting you".......s. This wasn't the first time someone has overheard me speaking and, like a moth to, umm, well, another moth I guess, approached me. I sorta take it as the norm that English people like meeting and talking other English people in America, even if they are a decade or so their junior, so it didn't strike me as, initially at least, all that odd.

When her opening conversational gambit was "you don't happen to know Ewan Blair do you?" I was a trifle perplexed - is that or is that not the freakiest chat-up line you've ever heard?. Anyway, it turns out the PM's son is interning (it means "doing work experience" but doesn't sound quite as menial even though it REALLY is) at some Congressional office and as we discovered when she whipped out a business card, this woman was a journalist called Sharon Churcher and apparently the Chief American Correspondent for The Mail on Sunday (I know the cynical amongst you are thinking "b*ll***s she was" but I've just Googled her and it turns out she's legit) and was seeking to dig up some grime on Tony's eldest and seemed willing to flash the readies in return for some juicy gossip.

Sadly, despite the fact that I probably would have sold him out for a bowl of peanuts and another Guinness, neither of us have an "in" on the hill these days (I never did but Katie used to work for Minority Whip Steny Hoya who was shown on TV quite a lot last night) and so had nothing to offer her. We did get to keep Sharon (I think I can call her that)'s card and she told us to give her a call should we discover anything useful so i'm gonna do some digging. Finding a Brit in DC can't be that hard can it?

Anyone who can formulate a way of tracking him down and getting him into an incriminating position can have a share of the greenbacks. I just need some ping-pong balls, a star-fruit and 200ft of parcel tape....


Big C said...

Just put ads up for a party for Brits with free alcohol - he's bound to turn up being the alchy he is.

Anonymous said...

Nice account of our encounter mr christian! I'm still up for getting the goss on him even if it does make me indirectly a hooker! we're in America elle would say!

Arnie said...

Nick you disappoint; how could you have squandered such a gloriously propitious opportunity to both humiliate the Blair's AND completely deceive the Rothermere faithful? Fabricating some bogus intelligence regarding Ewan caught wanking over the Koran would have sufficed. But wait. You've got her card! There's still time...

Ps. I too dig fawns.

indj said...

hi, just read the post of the h & d experience ala bush's state of the union...i heard it was a particulary bad night there as some of the local fat-cat republicans had rented out the party room (i used to be a server there). the good news is that it actually has a reputation for being a liberal hold-out in d.c. if you head towards the alley bar, you will be joined in eye-rolling of the few safe spots on the hill.