A Connie/Condit Companion

Connie Chung is going to let Gary Condit off easy in Thursday's interview. Here are the questions she should ask, but won't.

Published August 23, 2001 7:00PM (EDT)

Connie Chung, who is mocked for her softness and her occasional awkward efforts to overcome it, who makes funny decisions sometimes, who got the Gary Condit interview by agreeing to Condit's restrictive terms, has already interviewed the congressman and gone home and slept on it and returned to the office by now. What we watch Thursday (ABC, 10 p.m.) will be a day and a half old, but no matter -- it was surely a letdown even as it was happening.

In anticipation of the disappointment, Salon has prepared this Connie/Condit Companion, a list of questions Chung should, but probably won't, ask the embattled congressman.

1. Do you miss Chandra?
2. Did you love her?
3. What did you two do for fun?
4. How did you spend your last week together?
5. What have you told your children about your infidelity?
5. What did they say?
6. Why did you keep so much information from the police for so long?
7. Are we all entitled to do that in similar situations?
8. How would you feel if your daughter were missing and her married lover withheld information of their affair for 67 days?
9. What have you done to help find her?
10. Did she tell you she was pregnant?
11. If she was pregnant, what would you have done?
12. What's it like at your house these days?
13. How often do you and your wife talk about this whole thing?
14. You talked to Chandra virtually every day -- and she often stayed at your house. Why did this communication suddenly stop a week before her disappearance?
15. Did you ever consider running away with her?
16. Are there any other women?
17. If so, how would Chandra have felt about them?
18. Have you sought any professional help? Couples counseling?
19. Have you spoken to Chandra's parents?
20. Why was I forbidden to ask follow-up questions?
21. Why won't you take an FBI lie detector test? If you were a law enforcement officer, would you accept as evidence a self-administered lie detector test?
22. How do explain your skewering of Bill Clinton for his infidelity in light of your relationship with Chandra?
23. Do you feel that I'm entitled to ask these questions?
24. Why didn't you agree to an interview sooner?

Of course we all understand that these questions probably wouldn't have been pre-approved by the finicky interviewee, and that great effort was made to ensure his extreme comfort throughout the well-rehearsed sitdown, and that certain questions might not work with certain lighting techniques, and that many of them would simply have no home in an environment choreographed down to the necktie. So while it's possible Chung surprises us all with the performance of her career, we've also collected a few alternate questions -- questions we're a little more likely to hear:

1. What was Chandra's favorite color?
2. Do you think music is fun to listen to?
3. What are the exact words you use to describe the haircut you want when you go to the barber?
4. Why do you seem so weird to us?
5. What's your wife's favorite color?
6. How do I look?
7. What's on your mind when you're on that motorcycle? Have you ever seen what you look like on that thing?
8. Because we could arrange for some photos to be sent to your office.
9. I like to dance sometimes, at dances. Do you?
10. Do you have any allergies?
11. Would you say that children are our greatest resource?
12. Are you trying to seduce me?

Certainly both lists are incomplete -- feel free to send us any questions we forgot, and we'll publish a follow-up list. Send them here, and put "Connie's Companion" in the subject line.

By Chris Colin

Chris Colin is the author most recently of "Blindsight," published by the Atavist.

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