A Schaeferean Drama: Act II

July 20, 1998|By Laura Lippman

Welcome to Week 3 of the William Donald Schaefer campaign for comptroller. Official colors: Navy blue and orange. Official funny cap: "I'm a Wm. Donald Schaefer supporter and damn proud of it." Official disease: amnesia. How else to explain Schaefer's visit Wednesday to the 22nd annual J. Millard Tawes Crab Feast, where he rhapsodized about the Eastern Shore as if no one would remember that he once compared the region to an outdoor plumbing facility.

"Jurassic Park East" was the not-so-hip quip from former City Council President Walter S. Orlinsky earlier in the week, at Schaefer's first rally. But OK, Wally, we'll bite. Here's a paleontological analysis of the primary:

Stegosaurus: This benign herbivore has "an absurdly small head." Its illness -- diagnosed by the odor of rotting fish -- was the first tip that something was very wrong in Jurassic Park. And yes, he's the mascot of the Charles I. Ecker campaign.

Dilophosaurus has surprisingly weak jaws, making it an ineffectual hunter. Paralyzes victims with toxic spit, literally nibbling them to death. Hurls venom at 50 feet. Hello, Ellen Sauerbrey.

Velociraptor is cute when young, relatively small and quick. Rapacious "pack hunters for whom ambush is an instinct." And here comes Eileen Rehrmann now, campaign manager Larry S. Gibson at her side.

Tyrannosaurus Rex. Not the biggest of the dinosaurs, yet everyone thinks he is. "Has sensitive skin," as one "Jurassic Park" character observes. (One could even say thin.) Take a bow, Schaefer.

Procompsognathus. Not much bigger than chickens, these goofy-looking dinosaurs prey on crippled animals. In "Jurassic Park," this species was bred for waste management -- it ate the waste of bigger dinosaurs. Ladies and gentlemen, put your hands together for Gov. Parris Glendening!

This week in Schaefer history, July 19-25, 1988: The governor, who has tagged more public buildings and projects than any graffiti artist, finally finds something he doesn't want his name associated with: condoms. About 70,000 posters recommending condoms to prevent AIDS are destroyed, then reprinted without Schaefer's name. Cost to the state: $9,000.

Pub Date: 7/20/98

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