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How’s this for a mayoral campaign stop — prance around in nothing but a pair of snug undies and ask a group of Brooklynites for their votes?
No, Mayor Michael Bloomberg didn’t do that.
The Naked Cowboy did.
Famous for wearing nothing but a pair of tighty-whities and coordinating cowboy hat and boots, the Naked Cowboy calls himself the “most famous attraction in Times Square.” The Cowboy, a Jersey resident named Robert Burck, had hoped his following of randy gals — and some fellas — would help him defeat Bloomberg in this year’s mayoral election. But as this paper was going to press, Burck announced his withdrawal from the race. A message on his Web site, www.nakedcowboy.com, reads, “Naked Cowboy is very thankful for your support. He will continue to be the people’s representative.”
In spite of his withdrawal, the Naked Cowboy’s nearly nude pit stop in Brooklyn was one to remember.
“You’re probably thinking, why is this jackass in his underwear running for mayor?” Burck had told the modest crowd at the Sheepshead Bay/Plumb Beach Civic Association’s Meet the Candidates Night, which he attended at the invite of civic member Gene Berardelli. Burck met Berardelli, who is attempting to unseat City Councilmember Lew Fidler, at the city’s campaign finance board.
Listing his credentials, Burck said, “I’m the son of a vice mayor. I have a degree in political science from the University of Cincinnati.”
Burck, an independent who would have been a write-in candidate, said he’s an “ambassador of tourism for New York City.”
“I feel like I represent the city of New York — not only locally but internationally,” said Burck, who has performed as the Naked Cowboy for 10 years.
As mayor, Burck said he would have supported small businesses and fought to legalize gay marriage — and the sale of marijuana.
“There’s a multibillion industry that’s not making money for us,” he said.
Attendees at the civic meeting seemed unimpressed with Burck before he began his speech. One woman remarked under her breath, “This is ridiculous.”
But when Burck stripped off his jacket, grabbed a guitar and shook his moneymaker while singing a campaign song (“Call the naked hotline if you’re attacked, Naked Cowboy for New York City!), the audience was all smiles and cheers.
Burck even seemed to inspire Fidler, who jokingly started to remove his blazer after his own campaign speech.
One mature lady was clearly pleased with Burck’s performance. She commented, “Now I know why they didn’t turn on the air conditioning — we’d see his goose bumps.”
©2009 Community Newspaper Group
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