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Greetings, my fellow port swillers!

Ol’ Robbo was most surprised to learn of the passing this week of former Senator Earnest F. “Fritz” Hollings of South Carolina at the age of 97, because I hadn’t even realized that he was still alive.

I actually met Ol’ Fritz one time.  My newly-retired parents were living in South Carolina while I went to law school, and through writing to his office I snagged a summah internship with the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, on which he was, I believe, the Ranking Member at the time, with McCain in the Chair.  Or perhaps the other way round, I can’t remember.  (It was, by the bye, an utterly useless gig from a substantive point of view., but it gave me my first up-close-and-personal peek at the Swamp.)

Anyhoo, one afternoon Hollings came round the office to say an official “thank you” to those of us there for the summah.  As I shook hands with him, he asked me where in South Carolina I was living.  When I told him, he said, “Ah, big CO-caine bust ’round theyah a few weeks back.  Lotta drugs confiscated…lotta money…some cars and guns…..You weren’t mixed up in any of that now, were ya?”

“Noooo…..” I replied, “But I haven’t heard from Mom and Dad for a while now….”

He was good enough to laugh.

Somewhere or other I’ve still got the autographed photo of us shaking hands, Hollings looking every inch the politico, Self looking like a depraved moron.

Anyway, rest in peace.





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April 2019