Today's Opinion Journal has a piece on Giuliani's "odd behavior," which begins by referring to his decision to accept a call from his wife in the middle of a speech to the NRA last Friday:

Transcript: Just think of the language of it; the language of it is the people [phone rings] shall be secure— Let's see now. This is my wife calling, I think. [answers phone] Hello, dear. I'm talking- I'm talking to the members of the NRA right now; would you like to say hello? [laughs] I love you, and I'll give you a call as soon as I'm finished, okay? Okay, have a safe trip. Bye-bye. Talk to you later, dear; I love you. [hangs up phone to applause] It's a lot better that way. [???] Well, this is one of the great blessings of the modern age, being always available. Or maybe it isn't, I'm not sure. [laughs]

What a douchehound.

Anyway, the OJ goes on to note that, despite his campaign's assertions that it was a "candid and spontaneous moment," Giuliani has taken calls during speeches on other occasions: "During one event in Oklahoma, we're told he took two calls, at least one from his wife, and chatted for several minutes as the audience waited." And it's not like this stuff is well-received:

"That was just weird," one NRA audience member told the New York Post about the phone interruption.
"Weird" is a word that seems to follow Guiliani around quite a bit—and not in the good way that many of the proudly weird weirdos of Shakesville, myself included, would certainly defend. Steve Benen has a post today on Giuliani’s ‘weirdness factor’, in which he links to a New York Times piece in which more of Giuliani's weird behavior is detailed.

While rattling the cup in London [last week], he told reporters that he was "probably one of the four or five best-known Americans in the world." Oh? And who, someone asked, also makes that rarefied list? "Bill Clinton, Hillary," he replied before aides hustled him away.

Offhand, we can think of any number of Americans who might be more famous worldwide. President Bush, anyone? How about Muhammad Ali, Madonna, Michael Jordan or Oprah Winfrey?
Al Gore, Colin Powell, Britney Spears, Michael Jackson, any one of several dozen movie stars…?

The real revelation was Mr. Giuliani’s sense of his own importance. It was on display again in his N.R.A. speech. Freshly returned from London, he told the audience, "It’s nice to be here in England." Then, seeing an American flag, he said, "Ah, America."

He meant it as a joke about the mental scrambling that the rigors of campaigning can cause. But the underlying assumption was that people were so focused on him that they knew his travel schedule by heart. Many in the audience didn’t get it.

They found it weird, just as some New Yorkers did when Mr. Giuliani used to begin speeches with raspy imitations of Marlon Brando as Don Corleone—as if everyone knew "The Godfather" as well as he did. Often enough, people wondered if he had a sore throat.

The weirdness factor has a long history.
Some of which is also listed, including the time Giuliani "squealed in delight as Donald Trump nuzzled his fake breasts," and the time he "told reporters that he was leaving his wife—his second wife—before he bothered to tell her." And there's plenty more that isn't mentioned: Giuliani making fun of a Parkinson's patient, the infamous ferret tape during which he endlessly berates a caller for disagreeing with the city's policy on banning ferrets, his completely bizarre (and racist?) homage to the Lion King, and on and on and on.

It occurs to me that the more I know about Giuliani—inflated sense of self-importance, a tendency to ramble incoherently when he most needs to shut it, his completely misguided sense of what's "cool," the staged "spontaneity," the compulsion to perform—the more he reminds me of someone…

Rudy Giuliani: David Brent, with less kindness and a mean fascist streak

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