Mulligan Wins Gridiron Rave
The Washington Post has given longtime ProJo Washington reporter John E. Mulligan a rave review for his performance at the annual Gridiron Club dinner Saturday evening. Mulligan dressed in a dog suit and carried a cardboard station wagon on his hips. He crooned the old Drifter hit “Up on the Roof’’ as a spoof of Romney’s famous family auto trip with his dog strapped to the family’s station wagon.
Mulligan’s stage kudos will come as no surprise to Rhode Islanders of a certain age who remember with affection and laughs Mulligan’s many turns on stage at the annual Providence Newspaper Guild Follies show at the Venus de Milo.
Mulligan has not performed in the Follies for several years but he was once a mainstay of the cast, often writing gags and songs and spoofing Rhody politics to Bob Dylan tunes. Mulligan, Bob Kerr and Tony Lioce were all Follies stahs (no rs in Vo Dilun) for many years. On Politics is certain that Mulligan will be pushed to come back to the Follies for the 40th incarnation of the show next February at the Venus.
The Gridiron is a bit more of an elite event than the plebian Follies. The Gridiron Club is a group of 65 top Washington print reporters that exists for the sole purpose of putting on the annual show that is attended by the Washington political hierarchy. (President Obama didn’t make it this year but did attend last year). Men wear white tie and women show up in gowns. It is also an event that brings print media mucky-mucks from the provinces (including Providence) to rub elbows with the Washington political and media bigshots. In past years, Mulligan has brought ProJo editors and executives, including publisher Howard Sutton, editorial page editor Bob Whitcomb, editor Tom Heslin, metro editor Sue Areson and assorted Rhody pols to the festivities.