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Rachel Sklar has video of the Rudy-and-the-white-guys concession speech at the Radisson, and if you watch the whole thing you'll see a cameo by your A-blogger.

Also showed up yesterday in The New York Times. A quibble: They use me as a prime example of the "Boys on the Bus" who only talk to one another.

Still, reporters who cover a particular campaign face a special challenge that was documented as far back as Timothy Crouse's chronicle of the 1972 presidential race, "The Boys on the Bus": Their ability to take in all that is happening may be limited.

At 8 a.m. Wednesday, Joel Achenbach, a reporter for The Washington Post who had been covering Mr. Obama in New Hampshire, posted a mea culpa on the newspaper's Web site.

I wasn't on Obama's bus. I was never on anyone's bus. I burned through 2.5 tanks of gasoline covering ALL the candidates. I also spent the vast majority of my time interviewing voters and publishing a lot of their thoughts online and in the paper. But, yeah, I also went to dinner several times with other journalists, and by Monday night we have built quite the termite mound of conventional wisdom. We had Hillary selling pencils on the street by week's end.

We completely blew it. They pay us money to get this stuff right. I'll write more about this down the road. All I can say is that it looked like a duck, walked like a duck, and quacked like a duck. But it was a chicken.

The big problem with the Times quote is that it used that mixed metaphor, which I had apologized for the moment I made it. All my English-major and Comp Lit friends from college who now live in Westchester County or somewhere in Connecticut will be horrified beyond belief. I am dead to them now.

One must also note that the Times found nothing to criticize in its own, presumably immaculate coverage.

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One of the best things about producing this blog over the past three years has been the knowledge that what gets written here stays here -- that with an audience numbering in the low two figures we need not worry that outsiders will intrude upon our conversation.

That has changed in the last couple of days, as a single sentence has escaped the confines of the A-blog and gamboled across blogworld like a streaker at the Super Bowl. It was that rather ungentlemanly comment about Hillary at the debate. I won't bother with excuses and context: That one kind of got away from me. Shoulda hit the backspace the moment I typed it. [Was I channeling Mailer???] Regular readers here know that I am not a proponent of coarse, sexist, piggy, knuckle-dragging discourse, especially given my vulnerable personal situation as the lone male in a tribe of Amazons. I think anyone reading this blog also knows that I've praised Sen. Clinton repeatedly over the past year -- see this, for example -- for running an effective and disciplined campaign (to the point of being accused of being in the tank for her). The rogue comment, picked up by Media Matters, incited some interesting reaction out there and led me to discover a bunch of new blogs that are definitely worth a read, such as Feministing and Brendan Nyhan. See also Shakesville and Alex Leo.

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"The person who is most underestimated, again and again, is Hillary Clinton. She's extremely disciplined and knows what she's doing." -- J.Achenbach, May 21, 2007, before the lobotomy.


By Joel Achenbach  |  January 11, 2008; 6:38 AM ET
 
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