Friday, March 8, 2002 Updated: March 16, 2:43 AM ET
10 Burning Questions for Deep Throat
Special to Page 2
He may be the most famous unknown person in U.S. history, the man who was the key source for Woodward and Bernstein when they broke the Watergate story.
Along with McDonald's recipe for its special Big Mac sauce, Deep Throat's identity has remained one of America's most intriguing mysteries for decades.
Who is Deep Throat? We don't know and Woodward isn't talking. But as part of our special "ESPN Goes to Washington" Week, Woodward did set up a special chat room interview between Page 2's Jim Caple and Deep Throat for his first public comment in almost 30 years.
1.Does your name rhyme with Schmissinger?Deep Throat: Not telling.
How about Schmaig?Deep Throat: Look, I'm not here to play 20 questions.
C'mon. You can tell us. We won't tell anybody. Swear to God, hope to die.Deep Throat: Pinkie-swear?
Pinkie-swear.Deep Throat: Pretty please with sugar on top?
Pretty please with sugar on top.Deep Throat: All right. Then I'll tell you.
Really? You'll tell us?Deep Throat: Not!
So you'll never tell?Deep Throat: Never.
Never even tempted to tell anyone?Deep Throat: Well, I once considered getting a vanity plate. But someone beat me to it.
Really, who?Deep Throat: I won't name any names, but it rhymes with Lupinski.
2.Hal Holbrook played you in the movie. Were you flattered by his portrayal?Deep Throat: Not really. Not to knock Hal -- I know he does a great Mark Twain -- but c'mon, Woodward got Robert Redford. Not to brag, but women find me very attractive.
So who did you have in mind?Deep Throat: I thought it would have worked much better with Paul Newman playing me. They could have had a whole Butch and Sundance thing going there.
You wanted to turn "All the President's Men" into a buddy movie?Deep Throat: Yeah, it would have been great. Added some laughs. Really spiced things up. Instead of that news ticker at the end -- God, was that boring or what? -- you could have had me and Redford driving our car into the Potomac. Like in "Thelma and Louise."
Or after a night with Ted Kennedy.Deep Throat: You said it, not me.
3.The question a lot of people have still about Watergate is why did Nixon go to such lengths anyway? I mean, he was running against McGovern, for crying out loud.Deep Throat: Easy. It was because the Senators moved.
What?Deep Throat: The Senators moved. Seriously, that's the reason. Nixon was a sports fanatic, especially baseball. Remember, the first question he asked the
Apollo 11 astronauts when they returned from the moon was whether they had heard how the All-Star Game turned out. And I'm not making that up. Baseball occupied all his spare time. He loved reading the sports page and clipping the box scores. Used to drive the Cabinet nuts with how his Rotisserie team was doing. When the Senators moved, it damn near killed him. He got ornery and he got to thinking about other things, like the Democrats.
Bud Selig must explain that haircut.
So you're saying Watergate never would have happened if the Senators hadn't moved?Deep Throat: That's right. And George W. Bush would never have owned the Rangers.
4.So then are you excited about the possibility of the Expos moving to D.C.?Deep Throat: Are you kidding me? We're supposed to get excited about a team so bad not even Canada wants them around? That team is bad now and they're only going to get worse -- everyone knows Vladimir Guerrero will be gone by the time they get here. Besides, this town has already driven two baseball teams away, why would a third be any different? Face it. This is just that rat Selig's way of appeasing congressmen so they have somewhere to go on a summer night besides Gary Condit's place.
5.You were the main source in exposing this country's biggest political story of the 20th century. What one story would you most like to have someone tell you what really happened?Deep Throat: Hmmm. Well, there's who really shot JFK, for starters. And who really won Florida, Bush or Gore. But I think I'll have to go with what really happened the night Clinton ripped up his knee at Greg Norman's.
Really? You mean, you can't already imagine what really happened?Deep Throat: Oh, I can. I'm just hoping someone has pictures.
6.Best athlete you've seen in the White House?Deep Throat: That's easy. Ford. He played football at Michigan and turned down a chance to play for the Packers.
Bad choice. Deep Throat: Yeah, he could have really been something if he had stayed in football.
Ironic how he's viewed as a klutz because he tripped a couple of times.Deep Throat: It's not fair at all. Ford was a great athlete. You didn't have to worry about pasty white things when he went for a run. And he never passed out eating a pretzel, either.
7.How about the local football team? Who do you think would be tougher to work for, Nixon or Daniel Snyder?Deep Throat: Tough choice, but I think I'll go with Snyder. Nixon was more forgiving. With Snyder, every Saturday is a Saturday Night Massacre. And Nixon knew football better than Snyder does, too.
That's right. He used to send in plays to George Allen, right?Deep Throat: Yeah, but the problem is Nixon got his football playbook and his Vietnam strategic notes mixed up, so when he sent in his play to Allen on third and long, the Redskins wound up bombing Cambodia. Took Kissinger six weeks to explain that one at the peace table.
8.What about this new patriotism springing up from Sept. 11? Are you proud to see that?Deep Throat: I'd feel prouder if I got the feeling that even half the people chanting U-S-A!, U-S-A! and singing "God Bless America" had bothered to vote in the last presidential election. And I'd really feel proud if even 5 percent of them took mass transportation to the game instead of driving their fully-loaded SUV that gets 12 miles to the gallon. It's like my old pal G. Gordon Liddy says, talk is cheap, pal.
9.Speaking of Liddy, have you ever seen anyone else with that same look of fire, determination and certainty of success when he set his mind to something?Deep Throat: Yeah. He wears No. 23, and he's going to take my Wizards to the Eastern finals.
10.Finally, which superpower would you like most -- the strength of 100 men, the ability to turn invisible or the ability to fly?Deep Throat: The strength of 100 men.
Wow. Not invisible? Everyone chooses invisible. And I thought you of all people ...Deep Throat: No way. Invisibility is for sneaky little s----. I've been anonymous long enough. I'd like to be noticed. And with the strength of 100 men, I'd like to see the President tell me to shut up.