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Bored, toiletless press waits for Paula Broadwell in 50F weather


In the Washington Post, veteran news media reminisce about the good old Monica Lewinsky days of yore. Not much has changed today, as they stake out in front of the house Paula Broadwell is said to be staying:

Back then, the media had to bring “bags of quarters so when something happened, we could go run for a pay phone,” recalled veteran stakeout queen Debbie Pettit, a producer for NBC News. Pettit spent Wednesday morning in Washington running her vehicle’s heat, bundled in a winter coat and guzzling cups of Starbucks black coffee. ...

Despite long, largely boring hours and difficulty in finding bathrooms, many of the old hands said they don’t mind the drudgery.

In the past, the press earned plenty of overtime staking out some of Washington’s newsworthy residents, including then-Mayor Marion Barry after he was nabbed in the winter of 1990 smoking crack with a lady friend in a downtown hotel. They racked up overtime in 1987, first by staking out Fawn Hall, the National Security Council secretary who shredded telephone records of her boss, Lt. Col. Oliver L. North, and then hid some papers in her dress; and by shadowing then-presidential contender Gary Hart after the married former senator’s relationship with Donna Rice — not his wife — became public.

“I paid for my home’s down payment and part of my kid’s college with that OT,” said a television cameraman who asked not to be named so that he could speak candidly about the industry. “These days, the economy the way it is and the media losing money, we may have to cut back on this whole round-the-clock media stakeout biz.”

As of right now, press waiting outside of Broadwell's current location are doing so in 43F in weather. It's not supposed to get above 50F today.

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