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Despite the fact that he’s the proud author of sentences such as “To win the game, you’ve got to get in it,” Chris Matthews is not a dumb guy. No, God blessed him with a shock of blond hair (that somehow keeps getting blonder), enthusiasm that translates on the small screen, and a willingness to keep you interested in events (Chandra Levy, the Florida recount) that most had already flogged to death—or at least packaged into Dateline NBC specials. Also, unlike Larry King and Bill O’Reilly, Matthews refuses to play ignorant, and he is perfectly willing to give airtime to writers from the Nation and Newsweek—only they don’t come off as interesting and complex as he does. You can almost forgive his self-loathing Democrat schtick. Watch Matthews scream and read from his new book, Now, Let Me Tell You What I Really Think, at 12:30 p.m. at Barnes & Noble, 555 12th St. NW. Free. (202) 347-0176. (Jason Cherkis)