FishbowlDC Interview: A Gentleman and a White House Pooler

Say hello to Boston Globe Congressional Reporter Bobby Caina Calvan, who has also stepped in as a White House pooler. We worried when Bobby wrote us the following email this morning: “Wow, lots of questions! Won’t have time to answer all of them. How many minimum do you need?” We hoped for the best and expected the worst. But Bobby is a real quick study. He came through with flying colors in no time at all. Enjoy!

If you were a carbonated beverage, which would you be?  A diet Coke – sweet but empty.

How often do you Google yourself?  Who Googles themselves these days? Let alerts do it for you. (And what Google misses, my former interns and mentees inevitably find.)
What’s the worst thing you’ve ever said to an editor/boss (or vice versa)? All my interactions with my bosses are civil. I’ve even been called a gentleman – which is a good thing, right?
Who is your favorite working journalist and why?  This question is like rubbing salt into the wound of non-working journalists out there. Have you no compassion for our out-of-work peers?
Do you have a favorite word? I love the word “frenetic,” mainly because I love its synonyms: frenzied, wild, frantic, mad, rabid … all great words, too.
Who would you rather have dinner with – CNN’s Candy Crowley, ABC’s Martha Raddatz or Fox News’ Megyn Kelly? Tell us why. I’m sure they’re all lovely women with whom to break bread. Candy and Martha I’m sure would be a great conversationalists, and I’m sure Megyn might let me get a word in during dinner. But if I’m networking for the sole purpose of meeting other intelligent women in broadcast, Megyn might have to be the choice. Have you all seen this?
The Earth’s human population is dying out and you must save it. You will spend a romantic evening with either Scandal’s Kerry Washington, any of the women from FNC’s “The Five” or MSNBC’s S.E. Cupp. Who will it be? (None is not an option.) That’s a huge burden to put on a guy. However, Kerry Washington and I will do everything we can to save human civilization.
What swear word do you use most often?  F***er!
You’ve just been told the big news: You get to have your own Sunday morning talk show. Who will be on your roundtable? (Pick four journalists or pundits types.) I’d invite Eleanor Clift and give her the time to actually say something. I’ve always felt sorry for her on the McLaughlin Group, where she’s always interrupted before she can make a point. Boys, let the woman speak!
If you could have dinner with a person who has died, who would it be?
Wow, you’re making me choose between my parents. Seems like life all over again.
Who is your favorite Boybander and why? (Ezzy, Hazy, Weigel, Attackerman, Beutler) Sigh. I had to Google all those names.
When you pig out what do you eat? The whole pig, from snout to tail. When there’s no pig roasting, a high pile of nachos smothered in beef chili, cheese and jalapeno peppers.
What is your absolute favorite item of clothing in your closet? We want the fabric, the brand, the store and the price if possible. If it’s a certain kind of underwear we don’t want to know about it. My REI cargo pants. Sturdy, lots of pockets –perfect for traveling overseas.
Pick one: Mad Men, Scandal or Homeland. Don’t watch much television.
Have you ever had a tarot card reading?
Been wanting to get a reading. When I do, I’m sure they’ll be expecting me.
Have you ever had a near-death experience?
Happened during a rafting excursion on the Pano River, near the Ecuadorean town of Tena. Our raft slammed into a boulder and capsized. The swell was fierce, generating wave after wave of foam. I plunged deep into the river, seeing the light disappear as I sank. I eventually began floating upward, momentarily resurfacing only to be immediately pounded by another wave without a chance for a deep breath. The force of the wave pushed me down to the rocks, the current dragging me down river and my knees banging against underwater jags. My body was bruised and battered. I was nearly out of air. I was disoriented. Out of instinct, I gulped for air as soon as I broke freed from the underwater turbulence. As I gulped, another wave pummeled me. Luckily, I was wearing a life jacket, I was nearly passed out when I head bobbed into the calm of a pool.
Ever been arrested? So far, so good.
Tell us a secret not many people know about you.
Friend me on Facebook and you’ll discover I have no secrets.
What scares you? Needles being poked into me.
Breakfast cereal of choice: Frosted Mini Wheats.
Who would you want to play you in a movie? I’d have to play myself. No one in Hollywood looks anything like me.  
Hotel you stay at when you visit Manhattan: It’s always up to the Priceline gods.
From TMZ Founder Harvey Levin: You are about to be served your last meal. What will it be? Kalua pig (I’m from Hawaii), Filipino-style flan, a slab of grilled fish, a rack of lamb and a Diet Coke.
From Maynard Institute’s diversity news reporter Richard Prince: Best time you ever had with your clothes on? I respect Richard Prince for his devotion to the cause of diversity in our newsrooms. Were you thinking something naughty Richard? Most of my life’s joys have been experienced while I’ve been fully clothed, usually somewhere far from home and usually involving people I’ve never met before. And sometimes involving wet clothing. Case in point: In the wee hours of New Year’s Day in Madrid some years back, I befriended two women who were singing in the rain. I recognized the song they were singing and I joined in. Friendships were sparked, and the next few days were among the most memorable in my life. But enough with the dirty thoughts, Richard.
Finally, please come up for a question for our next FishbowlDC interviewee. This one may live on indefinitely. Make it good. “If you could take something to the grave  (and afterlife) with you, what would it be?”