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The CrackBerry Chronicles

With Elaine Santore

Photo(s) by Luke Thomas

By Elaine Santore


October 9, 2007

What about Joe?

State Senate Candidate Joe Alioto-Veronese wants to paint himself as the sane candidate in the district 3 race. His fellow candidates, incumbent Carole Migden and Assemblymember Mark Leno, continue to duke it out in the press and at debates.

Meanwhile, Veronese remains content playing the straight man (no pun intended, really) in the race, literally stepping back to let Migden and Leno play out their public feud. He hopes doing so will not only set him apart in the eyes of the electorate, but also allow Leno and Migden to cancel each other out.

State Senate candidate Joe Alioto-Veronese

Mark Leno, Carole Migden, and Joe Alioto-Veronese.

Last Tuesday, Luke Thomas and I attended a Veronese "house party" at Enrico's in North Beach. I was curious about how far Veronese had come since we first got wind of his candidacy back in April. Since Veronese formally announced his candidacy in September, he's hosted several fundraising events in San Francisco, Sonoma, and Marin County. He told us early on that he'd be running a grassroots campaign. (Or as grassroots as you can get in Marin.)

I couldn't help but notice the San Francisco socials crossing over to the local political scene. The very glamorous Claudia Ross of Cross Marketing organized the event. Tuesday also happened to be Claudia's birthday, and we made sure to toast the birthday girl. Beth Townsend co-hosted the event, and the gift bags included protein bars from Dr. Melina Jampolis.

Cross Marketing founder Claudia Ross, Account Executive Elizabeth Thompson,
Account Executive/NYC Representative Alexander Bie, and Elaine Santore.

Claudia Ross gives Luke Thomas a tutorial in red carpet posing.
Do you love it?
Photo by Alexander Bie

Veronese worked the crowd, and addressed them all with a rousing speech to rally their support. He stressed California's need for renewable energy, which starts with breaking away from PG&E. He's well aware of the issues facing the citizens of Marin, as well as those faced by the people of San Francisco.

Joe Alioto-Veronese, Julie Veronese, Beth Townsend, and Dr. Melina Jampolis.

Fariba Rezvani and Jorge Maumer, owner of Grumpy's Restaurant & Pub.

Joe Veronese introduces his "secret weapon," his wife Julie.

Erin Meyers, Claudia Ross, and Sabrina Buell.


McKinney on a mission in the Mission

I skipped Friday's weekly Candidates' Collaborative debate because of the frigid autumnal wind, but I caught up with the rest of the gang at the Temple Bar. After the after-party, Luke, Mike Powers, Paul Hogarth, Bob Brigham, Karen Babbitt and I headed to El Rio for a Code Pink party and fundraiser.

Mike bought everybody a round of PBR, but left early to open the Power Exchange. I gossiped with Susan Vaughan of the San Francisco Green Party. Word on the street was former Georgia Congresswoman and rumored Green Party presidential candidate, Cynthia McKinney, would be making an appearance at the event.

McKinney arrived at El Rio in a flurry, and Susan made sure to hand her a copy of the SF Green Party's newspaper.

Cynthia McKinney, Elaine Santore, and Susan Vaughan

Luke was determined to hunt McKinney down and ask her if she was planning to run for president as a Green. McKinney was unsurprisingly demure on the subject, but all indicators point to McKinney painting the White House green.

McKinney arrives to El Rio with David de la Gueronniere Josue.

McKinney and Code Pink's Vicki Leidner.

McKinney took to the stage between sets, and said, "I don't know how many Green Party events that I have been to over the last few months and I have yet to get music, dance or song."

To be fair, I've seen many instances of Greens engaging in song and dance. I once witnessed Medea Benjamin dancing in the streets in Milwaukee during the 2004 Green Party Convention.

McKinney addresses the crowd at El Rio.

Green Party members Susan King, Jim Barrett, Susan Vaughan,
and Elaine Santore (the pink headband wasn't planned).

On Saturday, Luke and I attended a fundraiser for McKinney in the Mission. It was an opportunity for McKinney to meet with local Green Party members to discuss her future and a her candidacy for president.

College Board Trustee John Rizzo (left)

Cynthia made sure we understood that anything said during the meeting was off the record. Check. After about 40-minutes into the fireside chat, we were politely requested to step outside. We naturally obliged our gracious host's request.

As we stood outside, we pondered the reasons why we were asked to leave the meeting. A few minutes later, we heard clapping and the sound of checkbooks slapping the coffee table.

Gavin turns 40 - OMG!

As many of you are aware, Mayor Gavin Newsom turns the big four-zero on Wednesday. At the time of publishing, FCJ has not received a coveted invitation to Gavin's sober-fun bash, but rest assured our progressive dysfunctional family will be tying one on in his honor.

On the subject of getting older, Gavin can always take solace in the wise words of Brad Pitt: "One thing sucks, your face kind of goes. Your body's not quite working the same. But you earned it. You earned that, things falling apart."

While FCJ and the Gavster don't always see eye-to-eye, Luke uses his keen eye to capture Gavin looking his best. Here are a few of my all-time favorite Gavin photos.

Mayor Gavin Newsom sipping his own Koolaid at the Excelsior fake question time meeting.

Getting his GQ look on while on tour
of a proposed Community Justice Court location.

Being Irish when it counts most: Strutting down Market Street
during the Saint Patrick's Day Parade.

Receiving a portrait of himself not looking a day over 25
at the Virgin SFO "Jefferson Airplane" debut.

The Obvious Child

CrackBerry Blind Item

Which giant-in-his-own-mind politico was overheard bitching about the Blue Angels, just days after voting against a resolution to ban the window chattering daredevils? Homeboy needs to do that shiz somewhere private (aka NOT in the hallways of City Hall), unless he wants to be a Blind Item.





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