Around Town | January 22, 2010 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

News - January 22, 2010

Around Town

ROLLING WITH SILVIO ... Rod Diridon, a member of the California High-Speed Rail Authority's Board of Directors, recently took a train ride in Italy with another public figure who knows a thing or two about facing public criticism: Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. The flashy prime minister, who over his long career survived a flurry of corruption allegations, made international headlines in December when a man threw a statue in his face at a political rally. Diridon assured his fellow board members that he had nothing to do with the statue attack, which occurred three days later. "But I can understand why he might be hit," Diridon added. "He goes into crowds and acts very much like Bill Clinton — running around the crowd and outrunning his security." Diridon, who attracted a flurry of criticism around Palo Alto over the past year for his blunt and unapologetic comments about the controversial project, said he joined Berlusconi for a high-speed-rail run from Rome to Milan. He called the train ride "quite enjoyable."

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