This Week In Pool Reports

It’s been a long week for everyone and with the Katrina anniversary, it has been a pretty heavy week for August. But in typical pool fashion, the funny still sneaks in.

  • “Some news upon landing — there were 2,000 screaming Utah residents awaiting the president’s arrival at the airport. Bush spoke to them for about five minutes — transcript to come, probably long before you all land (sorry about the fuse!) but it was the basics of the importance of winning the war in Iraq, people’s desire for freedom and the rest you have heard before.” — Stephen Dinan, Washington Times

  • “Several of your fellow pool folks described the event itself as like a rock concert greeting. The president stood at the top of the stairs waving for a few moments before descending to speak at a microphone stand on a raised platform in front of the crowd, with AF1 behind him.” — Dinan

  • Kelly O’Donnell of NBC bravely tried to break the awkward silence that followed by singing a line from ‘Ain’t That a Shame.’ But Fats, dressed in a white shirt and a hat and proudly wearing his medal, was a quiet honoree. Dana Perino said he had not been able to travel to Washington for his original award in the ’90s for health reasons; this one, obviously, is a replacement.” — Anne E. Kornblut, New York Times

  • “Bush was in the proximity of several protestors throughout the day — first at the high school, where a demonstrator held up a sign ‘Bush Failure’ in full view of the motorcade and then at the building site where he had lunch. Although he is usually kept a safe distance from such detractors, the motorcade on this afternoon parked right in front of a storm-ravaged house with large protest banners hanging on the front fence. ‘Make Levees Not War’ and other FEMA-related signs.” — Kornblut

  • “Bush and Laura were listening to J.D. play harmonica with a bandmate named Charlie on guitar. Their act is ‘J.D. and the Jammers,’ according to another guest. … Bush stood off to one side, with that jovial and bemused look of his, as he listened to them play. Laura had a huge, immovable smile on her face. We didn’t catch all the lyrics, but one of the songs went something like, ‘I’m gonna find my baby if it takes all night.’ Later, when the TV pool came in for a shot, Bush switched roles with Rodney from NBC, taking over the camera and filming him. It was merriment all around.” — Kornblut

  • “Your pool was able to hear only one bit of chit-chat between Bush and waitress Joyce Labruzzo as the president was trying to negotiate his way between the tight spaces between the tables. ‘Mr. President, are you going to turn your back on me?’ ‘No, ma’am,’ Bush said, with a laugh and a pause. ‘Not again.'” — William Douglas, McClatchy Newspapers

  • “The President waved repeatedly and playfully and grinned as the President’s Suburban rounded a corner where your pool had been positioned outside the President’s hotel, which is just a block from Mother’s. The President was inside at 9:09 p.m. Central. See you on Bourbon Street.” — Mike Allen, Time

  • “Before leaving the restaurant, Rob Lowe and his two little kids came back to where the pool was holding and accosted April Ryan. Apparently, Rob Lowe had overheard certain poolers singing a selection from his profound, seminal work, ‘St. Elmo’s Fire.’ Specifically, this pooler and the radio pooler were singing, ‘I Can Dream About You.’ Badly.” — Julie Mason, Houston Chronicle

  • “The massive operation that accompanies a presidential bike ride began churning in the frosty pre-dawn hours.” — Kornblut

  • “For approximately an hour and a half, the president apparently did whatever he does in the woods. We did not see him; we saw only circumstantial evidence that his activity involved biking. (While the pool waited on the road at Walker’s Point, someone carried a bike rack up the driveway). We were told, however, that the activity took place in the Massabesic Experimental Forest, situated, a local resident said, in Lyman and Alfred, Maine.” Jim Gerstenzang, Los Angeles Times