A new title for Burris: Professor

"I was there, I was there," Old School said Burris kept repeating. "I was there."

Of course you were there, Tombstone. The problem was in how you got there.

Sadly, during his lecture Tombstone said nothing about the amazing award he received from Washingtonian magazine, when he was named most clueless member of Congress.

While Tombstone offered no refreshments, there was a special treat. "A textbook," said Old School.

Yes, Tombstone passed out copies of the 2011-2012 Illinois Handbook of Government. But he didn't need to pay for it. Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White gives it out at his offices around the state and to schools for free.

At the end of the evening, students gathered around Burris to chat him up. Old School was subtle — as befits someone who has already been to the Kass School of Politics — and so was the last in line.

"I shook his hand and then introduced myself as a reporter for the Tribune," said Old School. "His handshake lost some of its pump. Then he gave me one of those 1,000-yard stares."

The handshake got even fishier after Old School told Tombstone he works with me.

"That's even worse," Tombstone said, then added: "Did you pay for the class?"

Yes, sir, Senator! We're not politicians. We don't take stuff for free. Not even textbooks.

jskass@tribune.com

Twitter @John_Kass

CHICAGO

More