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Posted at 10:43 AM ET, 04/20/2007

Friday List: A Little Help for Sanjaya

By Liz Kelly

Might we recommend the 'Don Juan De Marco' look for Saturday night's festivities? (Fox TV)

"What would you do if I sang out of tune? Would you stand up and walk out on me?" -- The Beatles.

Sanjaya Malakar needs a little help from his friends.

Malakar, he of the novelty hair and shaky vocals, is coming to D.C. tomorrow night to attend the annual White House Correspondents Dinner. As a guest of People magazine, Sanjaya will doubtlessly be this year's most-talked-about attendee. Even now I can picture hordes of low-level cable news staffers hunting the Hilton's honeycomb of event rooms to catch a pre-dinner glimpse of 17-year-old reality TV sensation. One can only hope that photo ops include shots of the gangly teen with dinner regulars. ("Helen Thomas, you're on candid camera!")

Sanjaya isn't the first "Idol" castoff to attend the event. A couple of years ago, I'll admit that I kicked a friend under the table when I caught a glimpse of a bemused Constantine Maroulis, who inadvisedly wore a button down shirt open to mid-pec region and made handy work of upstaging other attendees like Condoleezza Rice and Alan Greenspan.

Luckily, thanks to The Post's own Reliable Source team, we have advance word (second item) of Sanjaya's impending arrival and a chance to prep him for this quintessential Washigton event.

Today's mission: Help Sanjaya survive the White House Correspondents Dinner by sharing our collective Washington wisdom with him. From how to style that famous hair to whose hand to shake, let's help this suddenly famous teen navigate the choppy waters of D.C.'s biggest night.

Here are a few items to prime the pump, so to speak:

1. If you score an invite to the Bloomberg after-party, you want to accept. Believe it or not, this is what passes for a hot ticket in D.C.

2. No singing. We're still recovering from this.

2. Brush up on famous people from before you were born -- there's no chance Rich Little does any contemporary imitations.

3. If this man approaches you, politely make all haste to exit the area.

4. Looking to make headlines in this town? Two words: Bush twins.

Okay, your turn. Add your advice below...

Celebritology field agents Frank Thomason and Lisa Todorovich contributed to this report.

By Liz Kelly  | April 20, 2007; 10:43 AM ET
Categories:  Friday Lists  
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5. The president's name is George Bush. You don't have to bow or curtsey to him. In fact, he prefers it when people, upon meeting him, give a thumbs-up and a Fonzie-like "Ayyyyyy!" before applying a straight-armed fist to his upper arm.

Posted by: b | April 20, 2007 11:48 AM | Report abuse

Just keep on smiling . . . oh, and nod your head once in awhile.

Posted by: Fairfax | April 20, 2007 11:55 AM | Report abuse

Let's see - He's a no talent hack...probobly needs to bring an updated resume - I'm sure there's a position for him somewhere at the White House...

Posted by: Gregnva | April 20, 2007 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Hairdo: Must be a circa 1950's, no later than '60's hairdo. Teasing and lots of hairspray preferred. You will then easily blend in with the rest of the Washington society elite. DO NOT duplicate Condi Rice's "do"...... Watching "Hairspray" could give you some ideas.......

Posted by: Pinky | April 20, 2007 12:04 PM | Report abuse

2 words:

No pony-hawk

(Ok, maybe that was 3)

Posted by: Melinda | April 20, 2007 12:15 PM | Report abuse

If Sanjaya sang at L'Enfant Plaza during rush hour, would he clear $32.17?

Posted by: Margo | April 20, 2007 12:48 PM | Report abuse

are you sure he doesn't think he's going to a dinner in his home state??

Posted by: methinks | April 20, 2007 12:48 PM | Report abuse

When you are introduced to the President, say to him, `I hear that you have a vacancy for the Attorney General position. I'd like to be considered for the job. I am fully qualified: I am a warm body. And I even have a memory!!`

Posted by: Mister Methane | April 20, 2007 12:59 PM | Report abuse

Skip the half-smokes.

Posted by: Brian | April 20, 2007 1:03 PM | Report abuse

Ask where the President's post-dinner crack party will be held.

Posted by: Butthead | April 20, 2007 1:12 PM | Report abuse

I think he should skip the whole thing & just head to Dupont Circle & find himself a nice "significant other."

Posted by: Bored @ work | April 20, 2007 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Hit on Campbell Brown.

Posted by: Sean | April 20, 2007 1:17 PM | Report abuse

Prepare to be called "Jay Jay" or given some name other than your real name.

President Bush is either unable or unwilling to call anyone by their God-given name outside of his close core of advisors. Ask anyone in the Washington Press Corps what their name is, and what G.W. Bush calls them. Don't expect any different.

Posted by: Ken | April 20, 2007 2:00 PM | Report abuse

I will be fine. Thanks for all the help guys!

I appreciate it.

Posted by: Sanjaya | April 20, 2007 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Try not to act surprised when the Secret Service hears your name and bang! you're singing out-of-tune in Gitmo.

Posted by: byoolin | April 20, 2007 3:05 PM | Report abuse

The small number of comments tells me that Sanjaya has already fallen off our radar.

Posted by: Kris | April 20, 2007 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Just smile and win them with your charm! Act like the true politician you are!

Posted by: SunshineD121 | April 20, 2007 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Thank God America finally came to their senses! This poor fellow NEVER should have been chosen. America is either deaf or a bunch of idiots. His sister has far more talent and should have been where he is. Today we celebrate--Sanjaya was given he boot.

Posted by: Rick | April 20, 2007 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Sanjaya don"t give up buddy just keep on trying. Maybe oneday we will see you on the big music charts.You are still my HERO bECAUSE YOU DID GIVE EVERYBODY SOMETHING TO TALK ABOUT.

Posted by: Jerry | April 20, 2007 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Seek out Mark Ney, he'll be happy to give you a hand.

Posted by: Rabid Rabbit | April 20, 2007 4:01 PM | Report abuse

If you see Alec Baldwin (or any Baldwin for that matter) don't give him your phone number.

Posted by: akmitc | April 20, 2007 4:19 PM | Report abuse

Way to go Sanjaya!... The Sanjaya haters don't get it. They are the butt of Jokes.

Posted by: Manny | April 20, 2007 7:49 PM | Report abuse

offer to sing the National Anthem before dinner

Posted by: shoe | April 20, 2007 9:45 PM | Report abuse

Sanjaya, you have an incredible amount of charisma, you have the right attitude, looks and voice. American Idol is not just about one's voice, it is also about the entire package, meaning the ability to perform under intense pressure and scrutiny and you proved to the world that you can do that and you will be a star. The haters are envious that they cannot perform under any circumstances, let alone the pressure that you faced. Thank you for winning one for the underdog and GO FOR IT, the world is your oyster.

Posted by: john | April 21, 2007 12:15 AM | Report abuse

Just be yourself. You're charming & charismatic, & you do it effortlessly.
Respond to haters with the humorous wit that JFK had in putting them in their place. I know you're only 17, so this might be tough, but you can learn. Just don't be a punching bag.
Finally, always have kind words for your admirers, even when it's a little crying girl.

Posted by: Rambeau | April 21, 2007 12:53 PM | Report abuse

very nice site.. see again later

Posted by: sasha Viskey | April 21, 2007 5:32 PM | Report abuse

very nice site.. see again later

Posted by: sasha Viskey | April 21, 2007 6:00 PM | Report abuse

I still look forward to seeing sanjaya and so do a lot of other people I know--Sanjaya will go far and as far as all the haters go --I think they just hate to hate--heck they probably hate them selves---a lot of people don't have minds of their own and always go along with the crowd. You hang in there Sanjaya because there ARE A LOT OF PEOPLE STILL BEHIND YOU ALL THE WAY OUT HERE--IGNORE THE HATERS , THEY DO NOT MATTER.,lOOKING FORWARD TO SEEING YOU IN THE FUTURE. I liked your voice and I am 45.

Posted by: susan | April 21, 2007 11:26 PM | Report abuse


To find out, go to:

Posted by: fj | April 22, 2007 12:28 AM | Report abuse

Don't underestimate Sanjaya. He is a smart cookie.

If his charm and humility doesn't get you, his self deprecating humor and ability to convey the irony (to the discerning) in situations he finds himself in will. Remember the "Life is Beautiful" t-shirt, his original choice of Janis Joplin's "Mercedes Benz", his ad-libbing "Let's give them something to talk about -- other than hair." during his swan-song.

This kid is going places.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 22, 2007 2:01 AM | Report abuse

I love Sanjaya, because he's FRESH and a teen chick magnet. I hope he goes to Berklee to get some voice lessons because he has a pleasant jazzy voice, it just needs control and power.
I expect great things from him because he seems to know what he wants.

Posted by: Sally | April 22, 2007 1:43 PM | Report abuse

To all the people who didn't get it and turned this into a Sanjaya-lovefest:
Go away.

(And Liz, please don't fret -- the failure of Friday's list wasn't your fault for picking a lame topic. Really.)

Posted by: HoHum | April 23, 2007 11:13 AM | Report abuse

I guarantee that Sanjaya will be more popular and make more money than any of the remaining contestants in Idol.He has the looks and star power that can be marketed whether people think he can sing or not.He sounds better than a lot of the so called super stars out there today.Give the kid a chance!!!

Posted by: ann | April 23, 2007 12:57 PM | Report abuse

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