That’s the Spirit

I recently noticed this anecdote from NRO’s Jay Nordlinger:

A reader pointed me to a treasurable fact. It can be found in an obituary of Ralph J. Perk, the mayor of Cleveland from 1972 to 1977. “President Richard M. Nixon invited Mr. Perk and his wife, the former Lucille Gagliardi, to a dinner at the White House. But Mrs. Perk sent word that she could not attend because it was her night to go bowling.”

The spirit of Lucille Perk lives on in the Steelers’ James Harrison:

Linebacker James Harrison told reporters earlier this week he’d be a no-show at the White House. He denied any political motivation for his decision. “This is how I feel — if you want to see the Pittsburgh Steelers, invite us when we don’t win the Super Bowl. As far as I’m concerned, he would’ve invited Arizona if they had won,” said Harrison, who later joked that he was staying away because the White House was located in a “bad neighborhood.”

This isn’t the first time Harrison has declined an invitation to visit 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue — he turned down an invite from former President Bush after the Steelers won Super Bowl XL. “Let me ask you a question,” he said Wednesday, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “Why is it a big issue now that I’m not going if it wasn’t a big issue the last time?

“…Hey, James ain’t changed. I guess my profile did, but I didn’t change. I’m not going because I don’t want to go,” he said. “They’re making a big deal out of this: ‘Oh, my, James Harrison is not going to the White House; he must be a devil worshipper!'”

H/T Chuck Katz

Posted on May 23, 2009 in Asides, Cult of the Presidency | Comments

Comments are closed for this entry.