Serio-comic: Porn queen Stormy Daniels and restaurateur Mike Serio caucus behind the register at Serio's Deli.
Lunch at Serio's Deli in the CBD is usually a workaday affair -- guys with ties thrown over their shoulders, scarfing one of Mike Serio's excellent po-boys or muffulettas. Today's lunchseekers got something a little extra with their olive salad and red gravy: an appearance by Stormy Daniels, the Baton Rouge native and adult-video star who's stirred up a lot of fuss by threatening to take on Sen. David Vitter in the 2010 Louisiana Senate race. It was billed as a stop on her "listening tour," in which she attempted to glean the wisdom of average Joes and Boudreauxes on topics from deficit spending to health care.
Daniels may be a political novice, but she's hardly an inexperienced businesswoman, having just written, directed and starred in her own personal Citizen Kane, a feature titled Operation Desert Stormy. According to her biography in Adult Video News:
While any look at Stormy's career is bound to emphasize stardom and glamour, there are many other facets to the woman as well. An inventive writer, she was only with Wicked for four months when she wrote her first screenplay, Kink. Her contract was soon expanded to include writing. She directed her first film, One Night In Vegas in 2004, and true recognition of her diverse talents came at the 2006 AVN Awards, where she won both Best Screenplay and Best Supporting Actress for The Camp Cuddly Pines Power Tool Massacre.
The presence of the star of The Camp Cuddly Pines Power Tool Massacre had an electric effect on the lunch crowd. iPhones and cameras were (mostly shyly) produced, and Daniels -- in a flattering snakeskin-patterned blouse and knee-length black skirt -- was happy to pose with all who asked. (The outfit was attractive but not too revealing, falling somewhere between Mary Landrieu and Britney Spears' work wardrobes.) And the political questioning she faced from the mostly-male crowd was mostly polite and kind, except for the wag who brought up "the Bush doctrine."
Carpe-ing the diem, Gambit cornered Stormy to get her views on some of the pressing issues facing America today....
Political party? "I'm not a Democrat or a Republican. I'm independent."
Abortion? "I'm pro-abortion. I mean, pro-choice. Actually, I'm pro-condom."
Gay marriage? "I believe in everyone having equal rights. Who is the government to tell two people what they can and can't do?"
She was reluctant to take questions about her possible opponent ("I'm tired of talking about David Vitter; I'd like to hear David Vitter talk about me"), but did offer an opinion when asked whether her personal beliefs were closer to those of Landrieu or Vitter: she made a face.
"That's like being asked to choose between...." Her voice trailed off.
"So you're not crazy about either of them?"
"Is anybody?" she asked.
Back by the cash register, restaurateur Mike Serio was philosophical about all the fuss. "At first I thought it was a joke," he said of Daniels' appearance. Did he still think it was a joke? "Yeah, I think it is," he said.
"I don't know if they're doing this to try to embarrass David Vitter. But probably," Serio said, adding that he had voted for the senator before and would "probably" vote for Vitter again. Then he turned philosophical.
"Look, I believe in God," he said. "Mary Magdalene was a prostitute. You gain forgiveness when you admit your mistakes, and then you're on the right path."
Then he was gone before he could clarify which candidate he was talking about.