Stonehenge on the Potomac

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Here's a tip for sounding like a veteran member of the White House press corps.Ask someone if they are going over to Stonehenge for a stand-up.

No that doesn't mean taking a trip to Britain for a comedy show. Stonehenge is the nickname for the stone patio on the Northwest corner of the White House front lawn where TV cameras are parked to await the periodic standup reports from correspondents. Before it was patio, it was apparently just rocks, with the nickname Pebble Beach, at leat with some in the Big House on Pa. Ave.

At dusk, when the cameras are draped in their heavy covers, the spot is said to resemble the ancient ruins.

I have only been there under a blazing morning sun or of a cloudy afternoon, when it resembles more a Greek Chorus in green robes with their heads covered, standing in a field of mushrooms–the umbrellas that shield the cameras.

As readers of this blog already know, I was over at the White House this week for a bill-signing.

I love sitting in the press room, which of course makes me wonder when CJ is going to come in and quip her way out of some Bartlett administration assassination.

One thing that does stick out for me when you first walk in the door is a Fox News sticker affixed to an equipment cabinet across the room, the only such sticker anywhere around. Coincidence? Or something more.

As I as there waiting to move with the heard into the Rose Garden (roses, yes, but a lot of other flowers too, it turns out), the "Travel Pool" was advised by an amazingly decipherable loudspeaker voice to be ready to leave immediately following the Rose Garden bill-signing (the child protection bill named after America's Most Wanted host John Walsh's murdered son). Where were they headed. California? Korea? Iraq? Britain?

Turns out the "traveling" was only a few blocks to the Grand Hyatt hotel on 12th and G streets for a presidential speech.

As I left out of the Northwest Gate I waited around for awhile, but still could not avoid the let-down of exiting the grounds with noone on the outside to wonder if I were somebody important instead of just me.

Oh, well, maybe next time.

By John Eggerton

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