Pearls of wisdom

My mother, Pearl, always gave great advice in life. "Always wait a half hour after eating at the beach before you go swimming." "Finish your food. Children are starving in Europe [or alternatively, China, when I noticed that children were fat in France]." And she warned me to clean up after myself when visiting someone's house. And she gives good advice to this day.

Obviously, however, this is not something Bill or Hillary Clinton followed. It seems they both left their crumpled up pre-speech "To Do" lists on the podium at the Democratic National Convention. Fortunately, because of my wide spread connections in the world of politics, I knew the staffers who cleaned up, and they forwarded to me the actual notes themselves, warts and all.

And now I share them with you:

Actual speech "To Do" List found on the Podium at the Democratic Convention after the speech made by President Bill Clinton Wednesday night, in Bill's handwriting, apparently….

Bill Clinton – Notes to myself:

  • 1. Remember to refer to Denver as the Mile High City, not the "Mile High Club".
  • 2. Keep eye contact with Hillary or Chelsea or both ONLY, NOT the hot looking blonde delegate from Hawaii in the third row. OK to say ‘hi' to her by tugging on your ear during the speech.
  • 3. Keep speech on topic; find out what the topic is.
  • 4. Make sure you mention that Hillary got 18 million votes at least three times. Avoid mentioning "Michigan" or "Florida".
  • 5. Use the "…a place called Hope" line. They still love that crap.
  • 6. Oh yeah, and it's "Barack Obama" — you're endorsing — try to work that name in somewhere in the speech.
  • 7. Don't mention that you were actually the first Black president.
  • 8. After the speech, return Eliot Spitzer's call, and get that phone number from him of his ‘friend'.

Notes from Hillary.

Also, this is an actual "To Do" List found on the Podium at the Democratic Convention after the speech made by Senator Hillary Clinton Tuesday night, last week.

  • 1. Wear dark pants suit, the one that makes you look thinner. When waving, don't turn your back to the audience.
  • 2. Don't laugh. No matter what—just smile.
  • 3. Don't cry. Again, no matter what—just smile.
  • 4. Work in a pitch for contributions, we have a huge campaign debt to cover.
  • 5. When you tell people to vote for "Barack Obama" [BAH-ROCK OH-BA-MA], and not John McCain, try to look sincere. Look straight in to the camera, and smile. Practice this in front of mirror!!! Keep teeth gritting to a minimum.
  • 6. Update resume for job search.
  • 7. Bring signed copies of "It Takes a Village" for back of room sales, after speech. Remember that Obama wants his cut of all sales.

So, there you. You probably are as surprised as I am at their carelessness. But, maybe, just maybe, they wanted these "To Do" notes to be found…..hmm.

Joey Novick is an attorney, professional stand-up comedian, professional keynote speaker, and a former 12 year Councilman in Flemington, NJ. From 1996-2000, he served as the County Chair of the Hunterdon County Democratic Committee. As a stand-up comedian and improv actor, Joey has appeared on MTV, Comedy Central, Rascal's Comedy Hour and One Life to Live, and most recently, with "Laughing Liberally". He has opened in concert and at comedy club dates for such comedy notables as Jerry Seinfeld, Robert Klein, Lewis Black, Rosie O'Donnell and Ray Romano. He is currently developing a one-man show about life, laughter and local government in the Garden State, tentatively entitled, "Trentoon".

His blog,, has been informing NJ's political insiders for almost "two-thirds of a fiftieth of a century," and has recognized by Campaigns & Elections and SNJ Business People. The New York Times, AP Newswire, Washington Post, Newark Star-Ledger, ABC News and National Public Radio have all been kind enough to mention his work in comedy and politics every now and then. Joey appears monthly on News-12's "Power & Politics", sharing his keen insights on NJ's elected officials, and has chaired a panel on political humor for the New Jersey State League of Municipalities every year since 1995. He has taken his political humor on the road across the nation, appearing at state municipal league conferences in New York, Maine, Connecticut, Nevada, West Virginia, New Mexico, Colorado, Kentucky and Rhode Island; as well as at the National League of Cities Conference. His mother, Pearl, lives in Florida, plays canasta almost every day, and is very glad Joey visits her on a regular basis. | |


Pearls of wisdom