- The Washington Times - Sunday, May 6, 2007

Wake-up call

President and Mrs. Bush went to the 7:45 a.m. Sunday service yesterday at St. John’s Episcopal Church at Lafayette Square, settling into a pew to hear church rector the Rev. Luis Leon preach about love, or more specifically eros — erotic or romantic love.

“All of us who are married ought to know about eros,” Mr. Leon said. “It’s what might be called ‘hot love.’ ”

At which point the designated White House pool reporter, Jon Ward of The Washington Times, wrote that he and the rest of the congregation were “now fully awake.”

“It’s not a bad thing,” stressed Mr. Leon, “but done by the wrong person, it can get you in a lot of trouble.” The rector then actually mentioned the infamous “D.C. madam” Deborah Jeane Palfrey, who has spent this past week outing her extensive list of Washington clients.

“Here in Washington, D.C., a lot of people get in trouble on this one,” the rector noted.

‘Cutting edge’

“This invitation is not for everyone,” begins the note from Heather Podesta, founder of Heather Podesta & Partners and wife of Democratic lobbyist Tony Podesta and brother-in-law of President Clinton‘schief of staff, John Podesta.

“It is not for those who embrace the predictable. Who revel in the mundane. Who take comfort in the conventional. Rather, this invitation is for someone at ease with the cutting edge. Excited by what’s new. Come dine with the leadership.”

Wow, who in the world could Mrs. Podesta be referring to?

“I’m writing to invite you to an intimate dinner with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. This will be an excellent opportunity to sit down with Senator Reid over a lovely meal.”

Dinner bells ring at 6:30 p.m. this Friday at the Podesta home on Woodley Road NW. The suggested meal contribution of $2,300 per person will go towards the Nevada senator’s campaign for re-election in 2010, Mrs. Podesta told Inside the Beltway when we reached her by telephone yesterday.

Can’t find mom

Through rain, sleet and snow the postman will go, but apparently not through flood-ravaged New Orleans.

“The United States Postal Service has given up on New Orleans,” Andrew Lawrence of Alexandria opines in a letter to Inside the Beltway. In fact, he can’t even get a letter into the hands of the postmaster, let alone his elderly mother.

“I recently addressed a letter to the ‘Postmaster, USPS, Lakeview, New Orleans, LA 70124’ and affixed more than adequate postage. The unopened envelope was returned as ‘Undeliverable as addressed. No forwarding information available.’

“With this returned envelope, it is clear the Postal Service has given up on the city. And I now know why mail is not being delivered to my 84-year-young [Hurricane] Katrina survivor mother at her rebuilt Lakeview home. Since mother’s return to Lakeview in February, some mail has gotten through and only God knows what hasn’t — her credit card bills, electric bills and water bills have not made it to the mailbox on the house. She is having one heck of a time dealing with these creditors.”

Mr. Lawrence says his phone calls and, now, letter to the postal service have proven insufficient in correcting the problem.

Yep, Hillary’s out

“I might vote for him, you know.”

“Obama?”

” ‘Anybody in America can grow up to be president!’ That’s what I say. Except Hillary! She wins, I puke.”

Barack Obama.”

“Ah. Handsome. Great photo op. But I don’t know what he stands for. Be a perfect president. He speaks perfect white, as well as black. You never heard me say that.”

“What about McCain?”

“He speaks Bush now. Can’t win.”

“Obama is against the war now, you know.”

“So am I. It’s boring. I’m ready for a new war. Time to blow up Iran. They got Saddam. Now we gotta get, uh, … And that nut job in North Korea, they both gotta go.”

Conversation between TV-character lawyers Denny Crane (played by William Shatner) and Alan Shore (James Spader) of “Boston Legal” (Season 3, Episode 20, “Guise ‘n Dolls”), written by Sanford Goldon, Karen Wyscarver and David E. Kelley.

Longing for leaks

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff presented this amusing point to ponder during a recent speech:

“Of course, I learned a lesson; which is, if you really want to keep a secret in Washington, give a speech — nobody pays attention. But if you really want to communicate, what you’ve got to do is type it up on a piece of paper and leak it, and then it gets on the front page.”

John McCaslin, whose column is nationally syndicated, can be reached at 202/636-3284 or jmccaslin @washingtontimes.com.

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