J'accuse! Executives at Medical Mutual remained tight-lipped during Week One of the credibility crisis sparked by the company's ties to Jerry Patrick, its deposed marketing head and alleged Lothario. As reported on this page last week, Patrick is still working for Medical Mutual, despite serious charges of sexual impropriety. The news came as a surprise to many staffers at the insurer's downtown headquarters, where last week's bundle of Scene newspapers mysteriously disappeared shortly after delivery. Patrick was coy again on the phone this week, at first refusing to identify himself ("What can he do for you?"), then snapping, "I told you before, I have no comment!" Genial corporate spokesman Jared Chaney also declined to comment, instead suggesting helpfully, "Ask me about the Browns." (He sat in the Browns' luxury box Saturday night and loved the new stadium.) Board member Sam Miller initially responded to questions about Patrick with, "I don't think it's any of your business." Further questions prompted a grumpy "You're trying to get another dirty story," then finally a snarling "Don't fuck with me, pal." Wrong movie, Sam.
The best seat in the house for the Klan rally was the parking deck of the Chicago Title building opposite the Justice Center, where Mayor Michael White ran his own version of a luxury box. White looked sporting in shades, blazer, and polo shirt, and ready for the Browns game with his binoculars and water bottle. He was flanked by a coterie of staff (Nancy Lesic, Henry Guzman, Ken Silliman) and confidantes, including close friends Fred Nance and Ricardo Teamor, and union-busting lawyer Bob Duvin, who fought the CPPA's challenge to the city's Klan plans. Man-about-town Larry Robinson looked chic in peach, and Sam Miller looked oddly bulky, as if he were wearing a bulletproof vest. No one tried to fuck with Sam.
Meanwhile, White's nemesis, George Forbes, held court on the street below, looking relaxed in khakis and a Howard University baseball cap. He chuckled when asked about the previous day's reported altercation with White at the Shoreby Club, promising to turn the other cheek for the rally. "We're just going to do a little march and say a little prayer. It's strictly peaceful." Though it was ostensibly White's show, Forbes was the one who received all the accolades, garnering a hero's welcome from people like the white protester who told him, "Thanks for fighting the good fight, Mr. Forbes." Even an impassive black mounted policeman surreptitiously gave him a thumbs-up. And no one tried to fuck with Forbes.
Reports on the death of game-day partying turned out to be greatly exaggerated. By 5 p.m. Saturday, the Shoreway Muny Lot was nearly filled despite a hefty $10 parking fee with long rows of burning meat; blaring radios; kegs, cans, and bottles; and painted faces diving for errant footballs. The Dawg Pound was another pleasant surprise. Bleacher seats are now $30 a pop, but remain home to a mass of unwashed blue-collar boys fueled by Bud and testosterone. The occasional female was greeted by hearty chants of "Show your tits" or, alternatively, "Show your puppies." Only a few overzealous fans were hauled away by police. And in their debut appearance at Lerner Field, the Dawgs did not fuck with anyone. But they are saving bail money for the November 7 return of the Modells.
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