I like Barney Frank more and more. When he retires, he can perhaps tour the country as a stand-up comedian. Here is his most recent humorous press interview courtesy of the WSJ.
Barney Frank, the witty Democratic congressman from Massachusetts, held forth on a number of topics during an impromptu question-and-answer session with reporters Saturday morning at Davos. Among the more random questions put to the long-serving congressman: Can Bill Clinton—whose Thursday evening talk was one of the conference’s best-attended events—be considered the “Mayor of Davos”? “No,” Mr. Frank replied. “I don’t know what that means.“Instead: “He is the most popular kid in Davos High School.”“He may even go beyond Bono ... He’s got that rock star plus the politico thing.” Mr. Frank was dressed something like a rock star himself, wearing a paisley tie that was wrapped almost completely around the outside of his collar. He had just emerged from a meeting of the world’s leading economic officials, including European Central Bank President Jean-Claude Trichet. Reporters asked him whether Mr. Trichet had expressed worries about inflation. No, he said. They asked again; that began to annoy Mr. Frank. “I am terribly sorry. Look, I understand not giving bad news to journalists is like not giving candy to children. But I apologize I have no bad news to give you.” One reporter would not be dissuaded: There was no discussion of inflation? “That’s the third time you’ve asked me, and you would obviously like me to say there was inflation, and I can’t make it up!”Continue Reading
You dog lovers out there can appreciate the conundrum of having to answer the following question honestly: “If you had to live the rest of your life on deserted island, who would you take with you?” The idea behind this question is that you would have to make the tough choice of picking your favorite human being—the proverbial one and only one. Answering, “I would actually like to take Max, my lovely Chihuahua dog, onto the deserted island because he is the center of my emotional life,” is not going to win you brownie points with most interlocutors, your spouse, your partner, or even your mother if she happens to standing next to you. When I get asked this question (and I am alone), this is my favorite answer: “I would like to take a DVD with every single edition of the New Yorker since 1925 with me. ” With this answer I am sure to startle my interlocutors. Yes, I honestly believe one human being could never amount to the collective intelligence and humanity of the entire ensemble of writers for the New Yorkers since 1925. Today the New Yorker launched its iPad application. After seeing this introductory commercial with Jason Schwartzman, I decided to change my answer to the Robinson Crusoe question. Henceforth I shall say: “If Apple soon allows the New Yorker to put its entire archive on the Ipad, it will definitely be an iPad.”