POLITICS
08/13/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Sturgis Crowd Treats WSJ Reporter Mardi Gras-Style

John McCain's stop Monday at the Sturgis biker rally and his subsequent tongue-in-cheek offer to have his wife participate in the Buffalo Chip Bikini Beauty Pageant, is starting to make waves on the political landscape. But it's mostly the sort of snickering variety, as it is hard, humorous and a bit alarming to envision Cindy participating in the general naked debauchery.

One member of the media, however, won't have such difficulties conceptualizing the whole scenario. The Wall Street Journal's Elizabeth Holmes was the lucky pool reporter for the Sturgis event. And during her time with the Senator she witnessed, by her own admission, no news. But she did get plenty of color, including bikers throwing beads at the Journal scribe, calls to take off her shirt, and lots of scantily-clad females. Check out what is likely the most hilarious pool report of the election:

For the entrance into the campground around 6:30 pm MT, the motorcade was joined by 11 motorcycles, seven of which flew large American flags behind them. The Straight Talk parked in front of a row of motorcycles and after a few moments McCain emerged with his wife, Cindy. McCain was wearing a blue checked shirt. Cindy had changed from her skirt and heels into cigarette jeans, ballet flats and a blue "Buffalo Chips" shirt. Trailed by John Thune, they made their way through the line of bikers--McCain thanked them, stopping to shake hands but also to hug some of them. He said some version of "Thanks for doing this, I really appreciate it," repeatedly.

After McCain arrived, your pool was escorted to an area of vendors to wait. Your pooler is told he did a "mix and mingle" with staff of the Buffalo Chip and local supporters. The advance staff, typically the picture of prepiness, had all donned the appropriate attire, including Buffalo Chips T-shirts and hats. Your pooler notes that they blended in surprisingly well with the crowd, making it difficult to discern whether the person shouting directions at you was worthy of your obliging.

Your pool was kept company by a crew of bikers on a balcony above the temporary stores, shouting a host of things (some nice, some not). They threw a few strands of beads our way, encouraging the reporters to perform activity a lá Mardi Gras. ("Do it for Bill O'Reilly!" one person shouted.) They were joined by two scantily-clad women, one in a version of a bikini and the other in a too-small school girl uniform, who swung on poles off to the side. A larger-than-life stone sculpture stood in the middle of the large open field, depicting a woman lying horizontally over a bike in what looked like an uncomfortable position.

McCain and Cindy swung by one store and bought four T-shirts, two black and two burnt orange which he grabbed hastily. He paid for them with cash from what appeared to be a black Velcro wallet and asked how business was doing.

Before selecting those tops, McCain quickly glanced at a rack of red T-shirts which your pooler saw featured a topless Miss Buffalo Chips (or Buffalo Chips hostess, unclear as to what her title was or how she earned it), with her arm covering one breast and a denim jacket hanging off her shoulder strategically to cover the other. A few feet away stood the woman herself, who goes by Jessica, wearing a black bikini and black leather chaps, signing autographs. McCain did not make his way over to her but several other male patrons did. "I don't want John McCain's autograph," one man slurred to Jessica. "I want yours," he said, holding up a T-shirt for her to sign.