BUFFALO, N.Y. - A Buffalo, N.Y., podiatrist, who claims to have made "the only cinematic image" of Senator Hillary Clinton's collapse during a speech two days ago, is at the center of a fierce bidding war among news agencies and political action groups. Dell Fellows, 52, made the fifteen-second digital movie with his Motorola v551 camera phone as Senator Clinton sank to the floor at the Saturn Club, where she was addressing a Lane Bryant self-image seminar.
"It was just dumb luck," said Fellows. "I was trying to call my wife to find out if she wanted me to pick up anything for dinner on the way home from the speech."
Fellows, who describes himself as "technically inept," was given the phone last week by his wife, Marsha, so that "I wouldn't have any excuse" for not stopping by the supermarket on the way home from work. While he was trying to operate the speed dial on the phone, he accidentally triggered the record function. As he was trying to figure out how to close the phone, he got his now historic shot.
And what a shot it is! In addition to being the only known record of the senator's collapse, it also demonstrates what Mrs. Clinton's critics have been alleging for some time: the former first lady wears jockey shorts.
At first Fellows wanted to give the digital movie to WGRZ-TV in Buffalo in return for a byline, but his wife, Marsha, quickly vetoed that idea. "She's the one who wears the jockey shorts in that family," said Fellows' best friend and accountant, Jim Feathers.
After relieving her husband of his phone, Mrs. Fellows called Bill O'Reilly's office at Fox News. O'Reilly, thinking Mrs. Fellows was his new producer, asked her in a husky voice what she was wearing. "You're gonna to be wearing my fist, buster," she replied. Then she told O'Reilly about the digital movie.
Fox News promptly offered to buy it for a sum in the low six figures. Mrs. Fellows laughed and hung up. After several phone calls to other news agencies, the asking price for the grainy image was well over $1 million, and a bidding war was on. As yet, there is no indication who the winner of that war will be.
Apart from the digital movie's historical value, it is a potentially devastating campaign weapon, and political operatives are salivating over the thought of the attack ads in which it could be used. As a result, everybody from the Republican National Committee to the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth would love to get their hands on the movie.
So would former New York mayor and skull ring model Rudolph Giuliani, who may well oppose Senator Clinton in the 2008 presidential election. "Jockey shorts," chortled Giuliani. "I guess that does make her the candidate with something extra."
In related news, Fruit of the Loom confirmed that it will soon be marketing "The Senator's Briefs," made of super-absorbent cotton, "for those days when you're feeling faint."