Curl…Live From Vietnam!!!

Seriously: Anyone want to wager how long it’ll be before a “Best of Joe Curl Pool Reports” hits bookstores? In this pool report, Curl dares you–just absolutely dares you–to not read his report:

    Look not here for news, lonely souls, lest your searching heart be rended, and thee die.

    Seriously, zippy the chimp all around, even on color. Click the little red “X” at the upper right to return to your shabby little lives. But if you were out shopping on Hang Gai Street, your pooler will heave up what he has consumed in a most frank and full way.

More when you click below…

You have the remarks delivered after President Bush’s lunch with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, and from the tri-lateral talks between Bush, Abe and South Korean President Roh Moo-hyun. The pool spray for the tri-lat was shifted from the bottom to the top, so of course the leaders could not tell your pool just how frank and full and meaningful and wonderful their talks had been.

A bit of color from the brief statements by Bush and Abe after their lunch. The setting was a small courtyard at the Sheraton. Backdrop: A brown and white pagoda, some purple flowers, two concrete dragons, a lake behind. A White House staffer wiped the marble floor with some cloth napkins to ensure firm footing.

The president displayed a few beads of sweat as he stood in the hot sun, and he was a bit squintier than usual (which is hard to achieve). He said he and Abe had “frank and full” discussions. The prime minister said he found the conversation “meaningful and wonderful.” They both expressed optimism for the six-party talks and pledged to cooperate on a ballistic missile defense. Then they enjoyed a handshake that can only be described as frank and full and meaningful and wonderful.

For the tri-lat, the scrum of photographers was violent, with lots of shoving and tempers on full and frank display, without a meaningful wonderfulness. Your pool packed in to a room in the Sheraton to find the three leaders side by side by side at a table, their flags arrayed behind them. Only Bush spoke, and his comments were both meaningful and wonderful (while also being full of a frank fullness). See transcript, then head back to Hang Gai.

Spotted at both sprays: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley.
The president left the hotel at 1:47 p.m. en route to the National Convention Center for the first APEC leaders meeting. Lots of frankly meaningful and wonderful waves from the throngs lining the shut-down streets (the scooters dropped down to the sidewalks while the motorcade passed). Past the McCain Memorial Lake again and the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum (but not the giant statue of Lenin). Yet the motorcade did not seem to draw the same enthusiasm: One man sitting on a doorstoop did even not look up from his bowl of noodles.

Now at the convention center, built specifically for APEC. The leaders are meeting somewhere in the long, wavy building, meant to invoke Halung Bay. Your pool is holding, awaiting a spray following the APEC Business Advisory Council meeting. Your pooler predicts that the forum will have been frank and full, and likely filled with a wonderful meaningfulness.

Joseph Curl
The Washington Times