Saturday, August 8, 2009

Blago as party favor - and not the political kind..

I know the people who work at Optimus, a commercial editing house in Chicago. They're hard working people, good people. They've worked very hard to build and maintain a successful business in a tough market during a difficult economic time.

But they have horrible party planners, choosing as they did, to bring in disgraced governor Rod Blagojevich to entertain the revelers.

I liked it better back in the day when disgraced politicians slunk off to the Siberia of self-imposed isolation.

Richard Nixon comes to mind...

Maybe - just maybe - this is Blago giving us a rehearsal of his next act - Jailhouse Rock?

Here's a REAL entertainer giving us some Jailhouse Rock of his own... (FULL DISCLOSURE - I'm an Elvis fan, so comparing Blago to Elvis gets me riled up good.)

Here's the story in full...

"Blagojevich shakes, rattles, rolls as party pro

Two men known in part for their hair stepped out from the back of a white Hummer limousine Friday evening a block from the Magnificent Mile.

The towering one with the flowing locks bore a striking resemblance the male model and romance-novel coverboy Fabio.

The other, according to a voice over a loudspeaker, was "the governor of rock and roll!"

Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich made an appearance tonight at an annual street party thrown by a video production company. All told, according to people in the crowd of about 200, Blagojevich stayed at the gathering for about 20 to 30 minutes, shaking hands, joking around and having his picture taken with surprised revelers.

Then there was the song.

Reports from the audience differed as to which Elvis Presley tune the former governor performed.

"Don't Be Cruel," said one partygoer.

"Treat Me Right," said another.

According to Blagojevich's publicist, Glenn Selig, the song was, in fact, "Treat Me Nice."

Efforts began in earnest in recent weeks to find a surprising musical guest for the party, which celebrates the anniversary of the founding of Optimus, a video production company at 161 E. Grand Ave., said the company's president, Tom Duff.

Optimus' "people" called the indicted former governor's "people" and a deal was cinched. Duff confirmed that Blagojevich was getting paid for the performance, though he declined to say how much. Selig, the publicist, said "a portion" of the proceeds would be donated to Gilda's Club, an organization that provides support for cancer patients.

Duff said the stretch-SUV picked Blagojevich and his entourage up at the Grand Avenue Red Line station at about 6:45 p.m. They arrived about five minutes later and Blagojevich, after shaking a few hands and posing for several camera phones, was hustled into the studio.

At 7 p.m., attention focused on a loading dock facing out to the crowd on St. Clair Street just south of Grand Avenue. The rolling door on the dock sat in the lowered position like a curtain. Moments later the door was raised, and out came Blagojevich.

The noted Elvis admirer performed just the one song that lasted about five minutes. At some point he flipped up his collar and unbuttoned the top few buttons on shirt. He even injected Presley's kicks and hip gyrations into the performance, attendees said.

Blagojevich was practicing all through the week at home and came to Optimus in recent days to sing against a backing track, which he also used in tonight's performance, Duff said.

"He was waffling between two different songs" before settling on "Treat Me Nice," he said.

Joe Dejulius, who came to the party in a fuzzy full-body dog suit, "was like 'No way!' " when Blagojevich arrived.

"I couldn't believe it," said Dejulius, 27, of his reaction to Blagojevich's arrival. "He was great. He called me his 'hound dog' when I had my picture taken with him. See?"

Indeed, the small screen on Dejulius' digital camera showed the former governor of Illinois, teeth bared in a huge grin, sidled up beside a grown man in a brown, floppy-eared dog outfit.

As for the large blond man who arrived with Blagojevich, attendees said he stood to the side of the loading dock during the performance, just another spectator.

Asked whether it was the Italian beefcake, the ex-governor's publicist said: "No, I'm sure it was [Blagojevich's] friend who happens to look a lot like Fabio. He knows Fabio, but no, it wasn't Fabio."

--Andrew L. Wang"

1 comment:

lixue said...

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