New York Mayor Ed Koch was never a stand-up comic. But he could have been.
He kept mayors, reporters and bystanders grinning in Salt Lake City Monday during a whirlwind visit with the U.S. Conference of Mayors, local newspaper editors and citizens on the street.Here are a few of the mayor's comments:
On hearing the story of the seagulls coming to eat the crickets and save the crops of the Mormon pioneers, Koch said, "Just like the Lord sending manna to my (jewish) people and saving them in the desert. Right?"
"Yes, that's like that," responded the surprised guide on Temple Square. "Same God, right?" asked Koch. "Yes, I'd say same God." "All right, we're brothers after all," smiled Koch.
On legalizing drugs: "What? You have a 14-year-old kid on drugs, he comes to you and says, `I'm on drugs,' you say, `You are. Here, have some more drugs. It is idiotic."
On the commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, Adm. Paul Yost Jr., saying he'd give his service a D or C- for its effectiveness in stopping drugs coming into the U.S.: "When I went to school, those grades mean you're expelled."
On whether the Rev. Jesse Jackson has earned the right to become Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis' running mate: "Second place gets the second-place prize - applause. That's all."
On hearing that non-Mormons are called Gentiles in Utah: "This is the only city in the world where I'm a Gentile," responded Koch, who is Jewish. "Funny, I don't feel any different."
On hearing that there is a pair of Peregrine falcons nesting on the former Hotel Utah: "We love falcons in New York. We fatten up our pigeons just for them."