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The Insider: Citizen Craig Seeks Private Idaho

Jun 24, 2007  •  Post A Comment

Faithful readers—if they’ll forgive that redundancy—know how partial The Insider is to “The Late, Late Show With Craig Ferguson.” And The Insider trusts they’ll forgive another demonstration of why she’s a fan—and why his season-to-date viewership hit another all-time-high average of 1.95 million total viewers.
Thus: Another in an occasional round of annoying questions for the Scottish-born Mr. Ferguson, who has applied for U.S. citizenship and is meanwhile soliciting scads of honorary citizenships from sea to shining sea. He will host the “Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular Special” to be broadcast at 8 p.m. July 4 on CBS-owned WBZ-TV in Boston and at 10 p.m. the same night on CBS nationally.
The honorary citizenship campaign began the week of June 13 with a letter from Mayor Vernon McDaniel of Ozark, Ark., in which Mr. Ferguson was named an honorary citizen of Ozark for having said nice things about the city and its catfish.
“I’ve had my citizenship application to be a citizen of the United States in for a long time, and it hasn’t come through yet. But I am now a citizen of Ozark,” Mr. Ferguson declared on “The Late, Late Show.” “I’ll become a citizen one town at a time across the United States. … Sooner or later I will become, just by default, an American citizen.”
Since then, he’s racked up more than 1,770 honorary citizenships, including one facilitated by former Arkansas Gov. (now Republican presidential candidate) Mike Huckabee and one facilitated by North Dakota Gov. John Hoeven.
The Insider: Name the official bird and flower of the locales that have granted you honorary citizenship.
Craig Ferguson: They’re “cockatoo” and “dandelion.” All 1,769 of them. You mean you want me to name them all? OK, I’ll start with the birds. Polly … Mr. Peepers … Beaky … Dr. Feathers … Bruce … Should I keep going?
The Insider: Do you have to pay honorary taxes in any of the locales? Or do you have any other obligations that are more or less savory?
Mr. Ferguson: Some towns gave me the keys to their city. Which I think means I have to be the designated driver whenever the city gets drunk. I do know that I’m obligated to take arms and defend these locales should they be threatened. I’d be forced to pick a side if North Dakota invades South Dakota. Which, let’s be honest, is only a matter of time.
The Insider: Are you allowed to fly the flags of all your honorary “states” in your neighborhood?
Mr. Ferguson: Yes. I’m even allowed to wear the flags. I’ve got on Alaska underpants right now. They’re a bit cold.
The Insider: Will all these minor, um, honorary affiliations be dropped like the proverbial hot potato when the citizenship to trump all citizenships is finally won? And by the way, when is that now supposed to happen?
Mr. Ferguson: I’m told I’ll get my citizenship as soon as I stop making jokes at the expense of current elected officials. So … never, I guess. By the way, that is the longest question I’ve ever been asked. I took a nap during the middle part.
The Insider: Just how did you, still a citizen of Scotland — which, however grudgingly, bows to the monarchy this country broke away from — get named host of the fireworks display broadcast on CBS on the all-Americanest of holidays?
Mr. Ferguson: Tony Danza said no.
(The Insider will be on vacation this week, but her everyday blogger-ego, OMGreppi, will not.)

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