The word “partying” in proximity to the name of Minnesota’s senior senator leapt out at me in an e-mail.
“Good Day, C.J., I have seen your articles in the StarTribune. They are very accurate and good. I wanted to pass along that last week, my family and I attended Senator Amy Klobuchar’s Minnesota breakfast [the D.C. gathering is actually called ‘Minnesota Morning’]. The Senator is looking forward to partying with the PM of Canada and State Dinner in honor of Justin Trudeau. Regards, Dan Steinberg.”
Did she say “partying”? I e-mailed Steinberg, who responded, “I believe so but the Senator is excited about it.”
Wednesday Klobuchar told me, “I don’t remember what I said. There might have been a reference to a party. I don’t know but I don’t think I did.”
She is indeed looking forward to seeing the new Canadian prime minister at a state visit that has prompted some of Klobuchar’s colleagues to hit her up for access, claiming special Canadian connections.
“I head up this American-Canadian Senate Parliament group where we — Sen. Mike Crapo, a Republican from Idaho — have worked tediously, on issues like ballast water and soft wood lumber, with trips to Ottawa,” Klobuchar laughed. “Finally, Justin Trudeau has made us cool! Finally, everyone is saying, ‘Oh, when is your next Canadian trip?’ ‘Oh, I wanted to go to the state dinner, you know, I have a distant relative from Canada.’ And I said, ‘Well, I’ve been doing this work for eight years.’ So anyway, I’m going to be with him [Wednesday] at reception with some members of his cabinet. [Thursday] there is a State Department lunch that I will attend with the secretary of state and then on [Thursday night] my husband [attorney John Bessler] and I are going to the State Dinner.”
Trudeau’s wife, Sophie Grégoire-Trudeau, is coming along.
While I had Klobuchar on the line, I thanked her for helping to alleviate the TSA gridlock at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, not that there won’t be other intermittent problems.
“Over that time period I had been to the airport a few times and saw what a disaster it was and how literally people were missing their flights and it was atrocious,” she said. “What I also knew is I was seeing news that they were blaming it on the budget when in fact we gave them $90 [million] or $100 million more than they requested last year. That also made me really angry. I called and said, ‘They better fix this; our taxpayers have paid for not just secure service but efficient service.’ ”
Menzel will heat up PACER gala
Idina Menzel is headlining the 34th annual PACER Center gala at the Minneapolis Convention Center April 30.
“The star of ‘Frozen’ and ‘Wicked’ and ‘Rent’ and Academy Award winner for ‘Let it Go’ is going to be a breeze to work with,” said PACER’s executive director Paula Goldberg Wednesday. “Yes, you know we’ve had lots of other people with requests but I don’t think Menzel is going to ask for much.”
Goldberg was mum when I asked how belatedly demanding 2014 headliner Diana Ross was. My sources tell me Ross decided the convention center’s dressing room wasn’t big enough and she requested a 42-foot trailer. It was the first time in the history of the PACER gala that the dressing room wasn’t sufficient. The dressing room seemed of ample size when I interviewed my mother’s pal Lionel Richie in it. Of course, it was fanciful for PACER to think that Richie’s “Endless Love” duet partner wouldn’t engage in any diva-like behavior. Ross has that reputation — as Twin Cities artist Anthony Whelihan learned while painting her official portrait.
Ignoring my Ross chatter, Goldberg said, “I think I read in the Denver Post that Idina Menzel is the Barbra Streisand of this generation. I think she will be very easy, amenable, and people will love her songs. Anyone with grandchildren, boys and girls, loves ‘Let it Go.’ ”
My favorite point of reference with Menzel is that her ex-husband Taye Diggs follows me on Twitter.
Unreal revelation on reality TV
A clue into why reality show-obsessed Courtney Stodden seems mixed up was revealed Tuesday on Lifetime’s “The Mother/Daughter Experiment: Celebrity Edition.”
Stodden is the cantilevered, 34-years-younger wife of Apple Valley actor Doug Hutchison of “Green Mile” fame. They were married when Stodden was 16, with the consent of her mother, who reveals something despicable in this clip supplied by “Entertainment Tonight”: tinyurl.com/j7pmexm.
C.J. can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and seen on Fox 9’s “Jason Show.” E-mailers, please state a subject; “Hello” does not count. Attachments are not opened.