Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

Rod Blagojevich Does It With Perez Hilton

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    NEWSLETTERS

    When the rest of the world stops listening to your protestations of innocence, when the legislature impeaches you, Donald Trump fires you, and even your lawyers abandon you, there’s always one man who will listen: a gay celebrity blogger.

    During Rod Blagojevich’s Wonderful Pistachios ad shoot, Perez Hilton, the self-proclaimed Queen of All Media, was on the set. Hilton scored an exclusive interview with Blagojevich -- exclusive because no one else is interested in hearing what the convicted felon has to say.

    As Hilton struggles with our ex-governor’s name, Blagojevich jokes that it’s pronounced “Blow-hard-o-vich.”

     “Your last name’s a mouthful,” Hilton says suggestively.
     
    “It’s a mouthful and it doesn’t taste anywhere near as good as these pistachio nuts over here,” says Blagojevich, who seems to be as interested in pimping nuts as proclaiming his own innocence. When Hilton compliments Blagojevich on his hair, Blago responds, “pistachios are not only good for hair growth, they’re good for the complexion of your skin, they’re good for your heart, and they have vitamins in there that help you recover from heavy exercise.”

    Blagojevich never mentioned this during any of his campaigns, even though Illinois is the birthplace of The Pistachio Principle. James Painter, a behavioral eating researcher at Eastern Illinois University, discovered that subjects ate fewer shelled pistachios than unshelled pistachios, but felt just as full, suggesting that slowing down eating can trigger hunger cues earlier. Painter did not release his findings in December 2008, the month Blagojevich was arrested. So perhaps Blagojevich is using this opportunity to jump on the pistachio train.

    “I’m sitting at a desk and apparently there’s a briefcase that’s slid in front of me, and I kind of look at it as if there’s something in there that I really covet, and I guess the implication is that there’s cash in there, but I would never take anything that I wasn’t entitled to or was illegal,” Blagojevich says. “I look at that briefcase covetously, but then it opens up and there’s a whole bunch of pistachio nuts, and because I believe in this product, Wonderful Pistachios, it’s almost better than money.”

    It’s better than money. Blagojevich is getting paid to sell Wonderful Pistachios. He didn’t get paid for the U.S. Senate seat. That’s why he gave a more convincing performance in this interview than he did at the press conference where he introduced Roland Burris.