- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 7, 2000

Stoned with fruit

Three apparent supporters of Hillary Rodham Clinton have been arrested on marijuana-possession charges in Tuxedo Village a historic walled town of about 1,500 that boasts New York state's lowest crime rate after pelting protesters of the first lady's visit with tangerines.
Neil Madera, Tuxedo Village's mayor, revealed in a telephone interview with Inside the Beltway yesterday:
"There were three young men, apparently from Long Island, who had been hiking or camping in the mountains, and they tossed some tangerines at the protesters, then got in their car and drove away. Except the police were on patrol and observed them, caught them, searched their vehicle and found some marijuana."
The mayor knows these details because he had his police force deliver coffee and doughnuts to the protesters moments earlier.
"It looked cold to me," Mr. Madera insisted. "And their [Hillary protest] signs were actually quite funny. I appreciated their sense of humor."
Might you be a Republican, your honor?
"I happen to be a [New York Mayor Rudolph W.] Giuliani supporter," conceded the mayor. "But when Hillary Rodham Clinton comes to town, she should be given every opportunity to have her campaign fund-raiser and it went off extremely well, I might add.
"Everybody is happy, including the protesters, except those who might have been hit by the tangerines."

Try concrete

President Clinton is about to receive a $14,000 bill for damages his helicopter, Marine One, and another presidential chopper caused to Shepherd College's baseball diamond during the recent round of Israel-Syria peace talks.
In four separate landings to deliver Mr. Clinton to the Shepherdstown, W.Va., talks, the multiton choppers not only sank into the natural-grass ball field, causing deep ruts, but crushed the field's irrigation system of pipes and sprinklers.
"What happened was the underground irrigation system was damaged badly, and there were large ruts on the field from two helicopters landing on it, as well as a fuel truck driving onto [the field] to refuel the helicopters," Valerie Owens, executive director of external affairs at Shepherd, tells Inside the Beltway.
"Then there were a few other smaller things, like the [ballpark's] fencing had to be taken down to accommodate the photographers so they could take [unobstructed] pictures."
She says the college will submit the bill for the damages to the State Department, which is picking up the summit's other costs.
Meanwhile, we're told the athletic facility's maintenance chief, Wayne Riser, has the ball field back in order and ready to play ball. That's not surprising, considering that Mr. Riser, or so we're told, is also Shepherd's baseball coach.

Empty spaces

Where did all the lobbyists go?
"It's a far cry from the days when lobbyists had to camp out in [congressional] corridors" waiting for floor action, agrees Washington public relations consultant Tracey Primrose, referring to a "dot-com" company that's having a big impact in the way Congress conducts business.
Brent Golemon, 30, a former legislative aide and administrative assistant in the Texas Legislature, is the brains behind GalleryWatch.com, a cyber-service catering to lawmakers, lobbyists, lawyers and anybody else who's wasted valuable time hanging around Capitol Hill for movement.
The site was launched with January's start of the second session of the 106th Congress, and provides information on everything from legislative bill tracking to up-to-the-minute Senate and House voting schedules via alerts over pagers, digital cell phones and Palm Pilots.

Finally, a captain

"I play Helen Keller's father," former Rep. Fred Grandy, Iowa Republican, said in a telephone interview yesterday or more precisely, Capt. Arthur Keller.
A revival of "The Miracle Worker" opens Friday at Washington's Arena Stage, and the four-term congressman who is now president and CEO of Goodwill Industries and who previously starred as "Gopher" of TV's "The Love Boat" is glad to be back on stage, especially for this performance.
"This drama is a compelling expression of what Goodwill does," Mr. Grandy notes. "Its message about fighting people's attitudes toward disabilities is as pertinent today as it was when Helen Keller was growing up."
Does he miss Capitol Hill?
"When I was in Congress people would ask me if I missed working with actors, and I would reply, 'No, I miss working with professional actors,' " Mr. Grandy tells this column.
Still, the ex-congressman says for this drama on conquering disabilities: "I'm soliciting interest from my former [congressional] colleagues, to try to drag them away from that hermetically sealed little bubble they live in."
"The Miracle Worker," which stars deaf and hearing actors, runs through April 30.

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