As the meeting wound down, Mawhinney approached council members with a little present he'd prepared for outgoing Councilman Tony Salvatore. Reaching inside a package wrapped in plastic, Mawhinney pulled out a torso of a mannequin clad in a white dress shirt and tie. And what a tie it was.
Full photo of tie after the jump.
Wrote Post-Dispatch reporter Stephen Deere: "The tie was imprinted with a Salvatore's picture, along with a message that is obscene when sounded out phonetically."
Hmmm. Sort of leaves you hanging, doesn't it? I kept reading, thinking, surely the reporter will reveal that juiciest tidbit of all. No such luck -- so I called Salvatore earlier this Wednesday afternoon.
"Yeah, this whole thing is pretty bizzarre," he began. "I mean, this guy went through a whole lot of trouble. Getting the mannequin, silk-screening the tie, have the words put on it. Why would he waste all his time on this and risk blowing his reputation down the tube?"
"Tony," I pressed on, "what did the tie say?"
"It said, 'I Am Sofa King We Todd Did.' I'm not big on phoentics, so I took me awhile to get it."
Salvatore recalled that Mawhinney gave the tie to a council member and asked for it to be passed down to Salvatore and then left the room. "Finally, it got down to maybe the sixth councilman, who tossed it behind the dais. But I kept it."
When I called city hall and asked for Mawhinney, a receptionist curtly replied, "He doesn't work here. I don't know where he is."
As the Post reported, city officials are not at all amused and are drafting charges to have him removed from his board seat.