Clintons Selected To Drop Times Square Ball On NYE

Former President Bill Clinton and his wife, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, will kiss 2008 goodbye on the world’s biggest stage this New Year’s Eve.

That’s because Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced that the Clintons will have the honor of pushing the ceremonial button that signals the Times Square New Year’s Eve Ball to begin lowering at 11:59 p.m. on Thursday night.

This year’s Times Square Ball is double the size of previous balls and is covered in 2,668 Waterford Crystals…
Organizers of the New Year’s Eve party say the bigger, brighter ball will remain in place all year atop the building at 1 Times Square to celebrate other holidays including Valentine’s Day, the Fourth of July and Halloween.

Imagine it — Bill in full glory! He’s used to lowering balls onto people’s faces, but only one person at a time. Tonight he’ll have a whole city looking up as his ball descends on them. And twice the size of most balls, naturally.

The honor is equally apropos for Hillary who, many have speculated over the years, has at least one ball. One presumes this won’t be the last ball dropped by the new secretary of state.

Last but not least, according to the report above, this particular New Year’s ball — unlike any New Year’s ball before it — will stay with us well beyond New Year’s Eve, through the seasons: Valentine’s Day, Fourth of July, Halloween… It’s the ball that won’t go away. And when 2009 is finally over, there it’ll be again, making another grand entrance, for the dawning of yet another Clinton year — I mean ball year. It’s the ball for all seasons, the all-purpose ball — just like the all-purpose Clintons, those trick candles that just won’t go out, but stay with us for ever and ever…

Please note that the Clinton ball is also brighter than any before it. That’s appropriate too, as Peggy Noonan noted in her 2000 book The Case Against Hillary Clinton:

[Bill] needs to be the center of attention. Because when he is, he feels like he has a center. That’s what the people on the rope line are there for: to fill him up. Left to himself — left with himself — he is bored, anxious; he needs a hit of adulation or he will float away. (Clinton’s aides dread drawing presidential vacation duty; Clinton can’t stand being away from the limelight.)…He cannot live a genuinely private life. Neither can she. So they must be in ours.

… “‘[T]hey have little enjoyment of life other than the tributes they receive from others or from their own grandiose fantasies, and they feel restless and bored when external glitter wears off and no new sources feed their self-regard’…Two summers ago I bumped into an intimate, lifelong friend of the Clintons….The friend was on a plane with the Clintons in 1997, as they returned from a vacation. On the way back to Washington they had to stop for a ceremonial appearance. The plane landed, the ramp of Air Force One was lowered, and suddenly the Clintons, who moments before had been slumped in their seats, came alive. Now they were smiling, laughing, waving to the crowd in the lights. Suddenly the Clintons were happy.