I'm truly sad the New York City primaries are over. For a communications coach, it was a daily feast of the absurd.
First we had Eliot Spitzer appearing on The Tonight Show, giving Jay Leno a chance to do his Mike Wallace impersonation and treat the former governor like a piñata at a 10-year-old's birthday party. Under fire, Spitzer came off about as charming on Jay's couch as he did in the beds at the Hay Adams Hotel he frequented with the shrinking ranks of prostitutes willing to accept the assignment. Despite his pleas for forgiveness and understanding during the campaign, voters ultimately saw Spitzer as not the so-called "Sheriff of Wall Street," but instead just another smarmy john.
Then we were treated to the ill-advised comeback attempt of Anthony Weiner, who should be told that sequels rarely work even in Hollywood. Weiner gave us part two of his sordid social media melodrama right smack in the middle of the mayoral campaign. After trotting out his poor wife to attest to his electability, he then tried eviscerating any reporter who dared to reference her in an interview. That's called leading with your pointy chin there Tony - probably his second-most prominent physical characteristic to be exposed to the electorate. Those wondering how cool Weiner would remain under pressure, were given a jaw-dropping definitive answer to that question in the homestretch of the campaign when the former congressman got into a heated shouting match with a voter at a campaign stop. Not exactly the best display of judgment to antagonize people who soon will have their hand on the voting booth lever. Even when you couldn't hear him, Weiner was communicating in ways that were memorable for all the wrong reasons. Flipping the bird to reporters after losing on Tuesday probably wasn't the classiest way to exit.
For a while it looked as though the Democrats might monopolize the WTF factor, but then along came John Catsimatidis. John "Cats" is how he positioned himself, perhaps assuming that his full name sounded more like a condition you go to a dermatologist to get cleared up. Catsimatidis was a walking metaphor for the Gristedes grocery chain he owns: overpriced, unkempt and outdated. He was quoted as criticizing the speaking voice of democratic candidate Christine Quinn, "Nice lady, but if I have to listen to that voice for four years I'll die." With his own voice resembling that of Steven Van Zandt's character Silvio in The Sopranos, and his girth rivaling Bobby Bacala's, the only move dumber would have been to mock Chris Christie's physique. His candidacy was ultimately put in a sleeper hold when he nodded off during an interview with a public radio reporter, who like any good journalist, recognized good sound when she heard it, so she recorded his snoring and aired it. Nighty night.
We can only hope that the road from here to Election Day in November is half as entertaining.