What men crave

John McCaslin
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Posted: May 09, 2006 8:05 PM

The magazine James Carville's hairstylist says he can't wait to read every time he sits in her Old Town Alexandria chair to have his head shaved: Cosmopolitan.


HAIRY WOLF

"Dad, don't shave your beard."

Expert (and daughterly) advice from Ilana Blitzer, assistant beauty editor for Self magazine in New York, to her father, popular CNN host and anchor Wolf Blitzer.

Seeing how the current issue of Esquire magazine paired pictures of her father - the hairy Wolf we've all come to know, the other doctored to show how he might appear sans beard - the 25-year-old Blitzer assured her father that she prefers him just the way he is.

And in her case, how he's always been.

"My daughter has never seen me without a beard," Blitzer tells The Beltway Beat.


BOSSY WOMAN

"Have you heard the new voice of Metro?" asks public- relations mogul and former Ronald Reagan aide Peter Hannaford, referring to Randi Miller, the 44-year-old Woodbridge woman whose voice was chosen from among 1,259 contestants to warn Washington subway riders when sliding doors are opening and closing.

Suffice it to say, Hannaford isn't impressed.

"Very authoritative. Very bossy. She missed her calling," he opines. "She should be the straw boss on one of those Metro escalator-repair crews."


OK, NO WAY

In the "It's My Show, and I'll Say What I Believe" category, we turn to MSNBC's "The Situation with Tucker Carlson," when the bow-tied host last week introduced former CIA analyst Ray McGovern, who had just confronted Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld in Atlanta about the existence of evidence leading to the war in Iraq.

Began Carlson: "That was the extraordinary scene earlier today when a heckler confronted Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld about the war in Iraq, but he wasn't just any heckler. Ray McGovern is a 27-year veteran of the CIA. He was the daily briefer to President Ronald Reagan during Reagan's first term. He joins us tonight from Atlanta. Mr. McGovern, welcome."

"Well, Tucker, I resent the word 'heckler.' I'd like you to take that back," McGovern said.

"OK, I'm not taking it back," Carlson assured him.


GONE PRIVATE

Christina Erland Culver has left her post at the Education Department and joined the education practice of Dutko Worldwide, one of Washington's most powerful lobbying firms.

Among her several positions dating back to the first Bush administration, Culver most recently was deputy assistant secretary in the department's Office of Intergovernmental and Interagency Affairs, concentrating on education reform and strategy, including the "No Child Left Behind Act" signed by President Bush in January 2002.

She also served as vice president for public affairs at Children First America, which supports scholarship programs for low-income families.


INTERN CALL

Anybody care to follow in Monica Lewinsky's footsteps?

Please, we are only trying to get your attention.

Parents, these days at least, can be assured that the White House Internship Program offers unique opportunities to serve the president of the United States, while exploring public service as a potential career.

Candidates who are U.S. citizens (sorry, aliens) and at least 18 years of age can apply for summer, fall or spring sessions. Applications for the fall 2006 term are due June 16.


MAN AND KATRINA

Now it's Uncle Sam's own scientists declaring that human activity - namely, greenhouse-gas emissions into the atmosphere - is thought to be "strongly" contributing to the increasing number of hurricanes in the Atlantic.

Federal scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory report that the region in the tropical Atlantic where hurricanes tend to originate - the Cape Verde Islands - warmed enough over the 20th century to add fuel to the hurricane-formation process.

"This very long-term increase in temperature (several tenths of a degree Celsius) may seem small, but . . . many scientists now believe (it) contributes strongly to an increase in hurricane activity in the Atlantic," reports NOAA's Thomas Knutson, a senior research meteorologist at the laboratory.


SIGN YOUR OWN BOOK

The New York City gathering was in celebration of senior Fox News Channel correspondent Eric Shawn's blistering new book, "The U.N. Exposed: How the United Nations Sabotages America's Security and Fails the World."

But at Wednesday evening's book party at the Upper East Side restaurant Elaine's, John R. Bolton, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, actually took to signing several copies of Shawn's stab at the U.N. - obviously giving his seal of approval to the content.

Fox News Channel founder Roger Ailes and host Bill O'Reilly, and former New York City Mayor Ed Koch, each made an appearance.


TRIPLE PLAY

"It's a great day in the District of Columbia. I had three goals in mind when I started this process: get a baseball team, get a stadium and get an owner. Today, we got all three." - D.C. Council member Jack Evans, speaking to The Beltway Beat after Monday's groundbreaking for a $611 million baseball stadium for the Washington Nationals and new team owner Ted Lerner.


CAR SALESMAN

Al Gore has resurfaced, telling Men's Journal about his frustrations with Congress dragging its feet over global warming, how he thinks our planet during his lifetime will suffer a large-scale catastrophe from rising temperatures, and his family's use of hybrid cars.

Gore said he and his wife, Tipper, "just got a Lexus hybrid, and our family are big fans of the Prius."


SEX AND THE IRS

We were surprised to see Bill Brannigan, who for three years covered the Vietnam War for ABC News and later served as a press officer at the World Bank, on stage for the Little Theatre of Alexandria production of "Love, Sex and the IRS."

Actually, Brannigan has performed in more than a dozen area theatrical productions in the past seven years.

Also among the Little Theatre cast is Greg Christopher (the IRS auditor), a real-life appellate lawyer for the Federal Communications Commission who, for two years, was an improvisational role player at the FBI and Secret Service academies.


BARACK'S LETTER

The Beltway Beat caught up with actor Hill Harper, currently starring in "CSI: NY," while he was in town promoting "Letters to a Young Brother: Manifest Your Destiny."

The Harvard Law School graduate who holds a master's degree from the John F. Kennedy School of Government (yes, ladies, he was recently named one of People magazine's Sexiest Men Alive), says he hopes his published letters help guide young men who've had no role models in their lives.

Besides his own correspondence, Harper includes a letter from Sen. Barack Obama, Illinois Democrat.

"For African-Americans in this country," Obama writes, "we have additional hurdles to overcome - the legacy of slavery and Jim Crow, and the ongoing problems of discrimination."

However, the successful "don't waste time on self-pity . . . don't spend time focused on how unfair life is. They don't blame other people for their problems and they don't use race or poverty or hardship as an excuse for failure." Rather, he says, they "take responsibility for their actions and they try to focus on not just themselves, but on others."

He cites the man who complained that "he had no shoes, until he saw a man with no feet."


ALL DECLARED

Ducking into the Federal Emergency Management Agency on Monday, we obtained a list of federally declared disasters by year and state, going back to the start of such presidential declarations in 1953.

Thus far in 2006, for instance, there have been 18 disaster declarations by President Bush. There were 48 in 2005, 68 in 2004, 56 in 2003, 49 in 2002 and 45 in 2001 - two of those being the September 11 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, when urban search and rescue workers rushed to the Pentagon from as far away as New Mexico.

The most disasters for one year - 75 - were declared by President Clinton in 1996, mainly blizzard- and flood-related. The years 1958 and 1959 were the most tranquil in the United States, with only seven declared disasters each year, including Hurricane Dot, which struck Hawaii.

What state takes top honors for hosting the highest number of disasters? That would be Texas with 77, followed by California (70), Florida (57), Louisiana (51) and New York (50).