The 6ABC mayoral debate ended but a half hour earlier yet there candidate T. Milton Street Sr. was, pulling up a seat at an East Falls bar on Cinco de Mayo Quizzo night, ready to grab the microphone to field questions from trivia gamesters about his candidacy.
It was real. And it was as spectacular as one would figure after reading that last paragraph.
For more than 20 minutes, Street sipped water and held court, fielding questions about education funding, charter-school moratoriums, stop-and-frisk, violence and vacant properties. Like at the debate, he also took shots at foe Anthony Hardy Williams.
You can see more than nine minutes of edited video from Quizzo night at the bottom of this post — big thanks to both East Falls resident Sean Maguire, and (for the closing scene) Steve and Carolyn Fillmore of the East Falls Local — but here are a few money quotes from the 74-year-old former state senator:
— “Why should people vote for me? Because I’m the best candidate. That’s what I think.”
— “We don’t have, in the inner city, places like this, a nice bar or club where you can sit down and relax, because of the violence. People are frightened.”
— “I don’t think the mayor’s office should be purchased by outsiders who have a lot of money, hedge funds up on City Line Avenue. [Donating] $5 million is a purchase; that’s no campaign contribution.”
— “What we have to do is raise your taxes to educate some poor black kids. Nobody wants to do that. If we want to be honest, if I were you, I’d tell them to let black people educate their own students. Why should we educate them? That’s what most people think, but most people don’t have the balls to say that.”
— “Why can’t we have a lottery that funds the schools? Then you don’t have to raise anybody’s taxes. … Poker machines, you can put them at the airport, put them in bars and clubs and (pause for effect) churches. Everybody would go to church then, right?”
— “The value system of the poor is never involved, or used, in the equation when they try to decide who can win and who can’t win. So, you have a whole group of people out there, like 300,000, ex-offenders or re-entry people and their families. Those people don’t vote. Trust me: I have awakened them and if you don’t believe that, listen to the debates.”
It was that last quote that drew the attention of Philly Mag and beyond’s Dan McQuade, who shared, with his Twitter audience, that Street told the audience he’ll be mayor if Philly’s poor people come out to vote: “If they don’t, I lose.”
For his part, bartender Jonathan Kennedy said he was “actually pleasantly surprised at his candor and honesty. He was definitely entertaining and brought some refreshing views to the conversation of the city’s top issues.”
Now, onto the Quizzo portion of the appearance.
The “Milton Street” round questions
All of the answers have to do with Milton, Street or variations thereof.
1. Name the board-game company responsible for Battleship, Twister and Yahtzee.
2. How many dice come with the game Yahtzee?
3. What four colors are on a Twister board (besides white)?
4. What’s the name of the Battleship docked in Camden?
5. What enthusiastic weight-loss cheerleader’s birth name was Milton Teagle Simmons?
6. Milton Hershey started Hershey’s Chocolates, which brought us the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup. Are there more or less than 90 calories in a peanut butter cup?
7. Who wrote Paradise Lost, a 1667 poem about the Biblical story of the Fall of Man?
a) John Milton
b) Milton Berle
c) Sam Milton
d) Milton Acorn
8. Name the female American skier who won the Super G gold medal at the 1998 Olympics in Nagano, Japan.
9. What street is the Palestra on?
10. What are the cross streets at the Philadelphia Zoo entrance?
Bonus Question: How many movies are in the Nightmare on Elm Street series? (If you get it right, that’s how many points you get.)
The “Milton Street” round answers
1) Milton Bradley. 2) Five. 3) Red, yellow, blue and green. 4) Battleship New Jersey. 5) Richard Simmons 6) Less, 87-88. 7) John Milton. 8) Picabo Street 9) 235 S. 33rd St. 10) 34th St. and W. Girard Ave. Bonus) Eight.
For comparison’s sake, Team Street scored six in the round (9th of 16). Top score: 15 (by two teams, thanks to the eight-point bonus-round bump.)