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October 23, 2008 / Politics / Park Slope / Perspective / The Politicrasher

Palin around! Sarah lookalikes raise big bucks — and hair — for Barack

The Brooklyn Paper

Imitation may be the most sincere form of flattery in “real America,” but in Park Slope, the liberal ladies who dressed up like Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin on Saturday decided it’s definitely not sincere and it’s certainly not flattery.

In a campaign season where everyone is involved — kids host bake sales for Obama! Artists graffiti swaths of Brooklyn! Husbands withhold sex from pro-McCain wives! — it was only fitting to be on hand when a bunch of ladies who loathe Palin decide to commandeer her signature look in the name of an Obama fundraiser.

After all, politics is all about hair.

John Edwards has the best hair of any politician of his generation and spends $400 to make sure of it. President Clinton once held up the Los Angeles airport to perfect his coif. And our hometown councilman, David Yassky, definitely has the sweetest ’do in city government.

So on Saturday night, Medusa Salon at 177 Seventh Ave. hosted “Updos for Obama” and raked in over $1,600 for the Democratic presidential nominee’s campaign. Donors gave $75 to the Obama campaign in return for a professionally styled Palin-style hairdo.

Throughout the night, the stylists teased and transformed tresses into “The Reformer” (twisted into the full updo) and “The Maverick” (half of the hair is pulled up).

Our reporter Sarah Portlock got her hair done to get a full sense of what was involved, and with the proper initials, bangs, and pearl earrings, Portlock bloomed into Brooklyn-girl-meets-caribou-Barbie (though I’m certainly not allowed to say such things in the office, given that 1984 restraining order).

The fundraiser idea came to Medusa stylist Kelly Gola after she’d heard one too many patrons gripe about Palin from the salon chair.

“When you look at what it is to be a feminist in today’s culture and specifically in New York, her nomination can be such a betrayal,” I heard Gola say, referring no doubt to the fact that some men like Palin solely because she’s hot.

“It’s something I wanted to respond to.”

Palinites-for-the night certainly responded by the dozens, wearing too-tight suit jackets, rimless glasses, and, not surprisingly, a lot of male friends named Joe toting six-packs of beer.

Park Slope resident Lori Ungemah got her shiny brown locks professionally styled while bouncing a baby Trig Palin doll in her lap and reading from a Bible.

Fellow faux Palin Yvonne Gumowitz came in from Westchester in a Palin-like red blazer, and brought her friend Bill Sloan, who wore fleece and introduced himself as Sarah’s nature-loving husband Todd Palin.

“I dressed as Republican as I could tonight,” Gumowitz said, fluffing her straightened brunette tresses. “It wasn’t easy.”

Wherever there is a smoke-filled backroom or a smoke-free barroom, The Brooklyn Paper’s Politicrasher will be there, bringing you the inside dope on our next generation of leaders. Got a hot tip for the Politicrasher? E-mail Newsroom@BrooklynPaper.com.
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