A Maryland tourism ad has gone over big in a Fairfax Station, Va., barn. Too big.
Maddie the mare has quit eating breakfast because she's too busy neighing back to the Assateague pony in the radio spot.
"Every morning on my way to work in Lorton, I stop in Fairfax Station to feed my horses their morning meal," Marjorie Wolson wrote to WTOP. "I listen to WTOP in my car on the drive over and on the radio in our barn once I arrive.
"For the past several days, as they were supposed to be eating and I occupied myself with morning chores, my thoroughbred mare comes away from her feed and begins to neigh. She gets quite agitated and stands in her doorway calling out instead of eating her feed."
At first, Wolson thought Maddie was reacting to something outside the barn. But after it happened several mornings in a row, she realized that the mare was reacting to the radio ad.
(Along with a neighing pony, the commercial features the sounds of a cuckoo clock and a bicycle bell. Wolson assumes that the horse isn't pining for Frederick antique shops or the C&O; Canal bike trail. An Assateague pony helped raise Maddie, who was orphaned when she was just days old, Wolson said.)
"While this is rather cute," Wolson's letter continued, "I have limited time to get these fool horses to finish up their food so I can get to work. Is there anyway that you could move the ad to after 6:25?"
The station has started playing the ad at a later time. That's fine with Maryland tourism officials, who'd just like the out-of-state horsey set to think Maryland for more than Preakness.
Off the Internet till she's up on the wall
One minute Kendel Ehrlich's official state portrait is up on the artist's Web site. The next - poof! - it's gone.
Did the former first lady have second thoughts about that O'Malley green gown?
The unveiling is not until June 3, but Annapolis artist Moe Hanson said she only expected one person to get a sneak peek via the blog portion of her site.
"I actually put it on there so my mother could see it," Hanson said.
With Mom up in New York, Hanson uses the blog to keep her posted on her work.
I wrote about it Sunday. Hanson took the image down Monday, after getting a call from Bob Ehrlich's office.
Curiously Egyptian but studiously mum
The ex-first lady's portrait might be gone, but visitors to Hanson's site can find another local political figure: Annapolis Alderwoman Julie Stankivic.
Last time I wrote about Stankivic was back in 2005, after debate moderator Carl Snowden had popped this curious question: Had Stankivic claimed, in a letter to then-Del. John Leopold, to be a reincarnated Egyptian princess?
In the debate and an interview shortly thereafter, Stankivic declined to comment. Leopold, now Anne Arundel county exec, was mum, too.
The portrait, done it pastels, does the talking now.
In it, Stankivic looks suspiciously like Egyptian princess. She wears a long white dress, a wide, decorative collar and bare feet. She is seated in an ornate chair, scepter on her lap, hieroglyphics all around.
Asked about her portrait yesterday, Stankivic declined to comment.
Zappatistas just can't wait for that statue
Boy, the Frank Zappa fans have really come out of the woodwork - or should I say the Yellow Snow?
One offered me an attagirl for writing about nipples on Mother's Day. (Coincidence, I swear.)
A reader and former Fells Point bar owner suggested a spot for the Zappa statue coming to Baltimore by way of Lithuania. "[W]hy not place it near Lithuanian Hall," wrote "Turkey" Joe Trabert. Instead of Night of 100 Elvises, he said, they could have Night of 100 Elvises and One Zappa.
Someone who describes herself as Zappa's second cousin, Barb Kendrick, said her grandmother and Zappa's mother, Rose Marie Colimore, were sisters. I think that makes them first cousins, once removed, but more to the point: Kendrick thinks the statue belongs downtown on Market Place.
"Frank's grandfather, Charlie Colimore, had a restaurant on one of the [corners] many years ago & his Mom lived on Market Place for a while during her life here in Balto.," she writes. "My Grandfather, Frank's uncle, also had a restaurant on the other end, along with a produce business, as well as owning some of the houses on Market Place."
The Market Place lobby might have some extra pull at City Hall. Kendrick's son, Jamie Kendrick, is a deputy director in Baltimore's Department of Transportation.
And from yet another Zappatista: "Maybe when it gets erected, they can have a Burnt Weeny Sandwich celebration at the base of the statue."
Connect the dots
The Greater Baltimore Urban League held a conference last week in the City that Reads: "State of Black Baltimore Conference." Or, as it appeared on the banner behind the podium, visible on the WBAL Web site: "State of Black Balitmore Conference." ... Red Sox pitcher Tim Wakefield, in town to play the O's, spent yesterday morning at Baltimore's ESPN Zone, the restaurant reports. He played games with his wife, Stacy, and son, Trevor, who, according to timwakefield.net, turns 4 tomorrow.