How to read Kitty Kelley.

How to read juicy books.
Sept. 15 2004 7:01 PM

Burning Bushes

A reader's guide to Kitty Kelley's The Family.

(Continued from Page 2)

Page 258-59: Under the moniker "Tweeds Bush," W. presides as unofficial chairman of Andover's stickball league. He manufactures a series of bogus membership cards that double as fake IDs in Boston bars.

Ibid.: W. introduces the school to the sport of pig ball, which involves throwing a football high in the air and then throttling a random player. As one ex-student puts it, "[T]o me he is the epitome of pig ball."

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Page 276: George H.W. challenges Yale chaplain William Sloane Coffin to a series of squash games. When Coffin takes four in a row, Bush refuses to quit until he wins. "That time I kicked a little ass and it felt good," Coffin gloats.

Matriarchs

Page 50: George H.W.'s mother, Dotty, forces her son to play sports right-handed, even though he's a natural southpaw.

Page 72-73: Barbara Bush's nickname explained: During World War II gasoline rationing, the Bushes navigate Kennebunkport, Maine, in a horse-drawn carriage. Prescott Bush Jr. notices that the family's horse, Barsil, looks a bit like George's then-girlfriend. He gives them both the nickname "Bar."

Page 191: At Yale, George H.W. asks Bar find a job to pay for her smoking habit.

Page 437: On a 1986 trip to Israel, Barbara visits the Holocaust Museum. "She had worn a blue flowered cotton housedress and open-toed sandals," says the wife of the U.S. consul general. "I couldn't believe it. Here she was the wife of the Vice President of the United States, for God's sakes, and she looked like she was going to a Sears Roebuck picnic."

Page 467: An associate on Barbara: "She can make a clean kill from a thousand yards away. … [W]hen she delivers the life-taking blow, she does it with a thin-lipped smile. … Have you ever seen an asp smile?"

Page 534: After Bush loses the 1992 election, Barbara holds a White House rummage sale and hawks her lightly used ball gowns to staffers.

Page 381-82: Sharon Bush on Barbara: "She can be a tyrant. That's why her boys called her 'The Nutcracker.' "

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