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Thursday, April 27, 2006
 
High School Classmate of Mine Running for Congress!

Unfortunately she's a Democrat so we won't be pushing her candidacy. I happened to see an ad for Camille Abate on a liberal blog and thought, gee, that name sure sounds familiar. Sure enough:

Camille grew up in Bergen County. She attended St. Catherine’s in Glen Rock, Mount Carmel, Somerville School and Benjamin Franklin Junior High in Ridgewood, and then attended Northern Highlands Regional High School in Allendale.

I was in the drama club at Northern Highlands, starting with my sophomore year. Camille and I were in a school play together, called George Washington Slept Here. The 1940s-set play was supposedly the inspiration for Green Acres, with the husband searching for a rustic atmosphere and the wife yearning for the city.

Camille was not the female lead, but she was a solid actress and had a much bigger part in the play than I (I popped in for one scene in the third act). But I do remember she screwed up royally one night. In the play there's a rich old uncle whom everybody patronizes. In the first act he complains about a draft, and the Eddie Albert character jumps up to shut the window. In the third act, the uncle has been exposed as a pauper, and when he complains of feeling a draft, his nephew is supposed to say, "Go right on feeling it."

Well, one of the last nights of the play the guy doing the Eddie Albert part makes a mistake--he jumps up to fix the draft in the third act. Now that's bad enough, but Camille then blows the scene by saying "You should have let him go on feeling it!" It's an obvious reaction, but actors are used to following specific cues and when she said that, nobody knew whose line it was and the stage was silent for a few seconds before somebody picked up the dialogue about a page later.

Of course, that has nothing to do with Camille today. She's running against an incumbent who got 58%. It's my former home district, which was country-club Republican when I grew up there. Marge Roukema represented the district for many years; a very liberal Republican.

NJ-5's not listed in Sabato's "Dirty Thirty" races, so we'll have to wait a bit longer for one my high school classmates to make it to Congress unless things really fall apart for the GOP this year. But we certainly wish her well otherwise--break a leg, Cammi!
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