The Erector Set

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Photo: Ron Antonelli/Pool/AP


The opening of several exhibitions seeking to rehab the legacy of the city's master builder, Robert Moses, kicked off a parade of heavy construction equipment last week. Governor Eliot Spitzer told an Albany adversary, "I'm a fucking steamroller — and I'll roll over you and anybody else!" Senator Hillary Clinton erected a towering lead in New Hampshire polls, just as Joe Biden undermined the foundations of his newly declared presidential candidacy by clumsily complimenting Barack Obama's apparently unusual articulateness and personal hygiene. Former governor George Pataki, whose own Washington aspirations might be compared to building castles in the air, delayed his campaign's ribbon-cutting ceremony yet again.

President George W. Bush bulldozed into town for a rare visit, hoping to dredge up distant memories of his 9/11 leadership by outlining his blueprint to speed up the pace of compensating ground-zero rescuers. Former Times reporter Judith Miller, who once dumped truckloads of debris into the debate over Iraqi WMDs, displayed a freshly power-washed memory at the Scooter Libby trial. The architects of a jury-rigged school-busing plan that issued MetroCards to kindergartners were sent back to the drawing board. Stephen Green forklifted struggling Air America out of bankruptcy, but network cornerstone Al Franken quit to toss his hard hat in the ring for the 2008 U.S. Senate race in Minnesota.

Fourteen FDNY officers tried to engineer promotions with résumés reinforced by degrees from a fake school in Liberia. The mother of former Knick Latrell Sprewell's children accused him of pile-driving her and weakening the foundation of their domestic arrangement by calling it a "fake-ass relationship." An Upper East Side woman whose insides were churning like a cement mixer as she boarded a JetBlue flight sued the airline for evicting her instead of issuing a barf bag. Restaurateur-magazine editor Graydon Carter spent an evening chucking scaffolding outside his Village townhouse. And Sienna Miller riveted the fashion world at the premiere of Factory Girl by excavating an Edie-era underpants-over-tights ensemble — leaving some to wonder if she was training to use the port-a-potty. —Mark Adams