A few things I heard at the Pennsylvania Society in New York last week:

"This is a private party." - Jim White, honoree at Stevens & Lee's possibly squarest of all pre-parties (imagine 150 Pennsylvania German-built men and women, all seated, serious at their dinners, in a windowless room), to which I was not invited, kicking me out after I confused him with the bond advisor John White. 

"You're at the newspaper? We'd better change the subject." - A smiling Della Clark, boss at West Philly's Enterprise Center, as I walked up behind State Rep. Dwight Evans, D-Phila, recently deposted House Finance Committee head on Fifth Ave. while he was introducing her to a couple of energy lobbyists.

"It's not something any contractor I talk to has been asking for. It's an ideological thing, for some people in Harrisburg." - Highway lobbyist, complaining conservative House Republicans queered a highway-spending bill over demands for lower wages, which highway contractors haven't been asking for.
"I do everything Alan does, except backwards, and in heels." - Duane Morris litigator Stephanie Kosta, on the Marcellus Shale legal work she does with her boss, firm partner and Democratic fundraiser Alan Kessler.
"I like them. They all agree with me." - U.S. Sen. and former conservative Club for Growth head Pat Toomey, R-Pa., when I asked him about the seven Republican candidates whose debate that afternoon was an audition to try and replace US Sen. Bob Casey, D-Pa.

"This is not so much labor guys. Just Democrats." - Frank Keel, advisor to IBEW Local 98 President John Dougherty, when I asked why there were more city councilmen than building-trades local presidents at Dougherty's rockin' Jerry Blavat party.

Frown, curt nod, tap on my elbow. - PNC Bank's top man in Philadelphia, Bill Mills, in response to my greeting, as he trailed his girlfriend through the Dougherty crowd.
"It's because I gave them money." - Gov. Tom Corbett's answer, at Saturday's Penn Club breakfast, when I asked why Penn's Amy Gutmann is the only PA college president I've heard say nice things about him.

"It's because they have a vet school. We're thinking of starting an animal program." - Sean Buffington, of the University of the Arts, on Penn's talent for getting funds from a tax-cutting Republican legislature. 
"This is our suburban location in New York." - Mayor Nutter, forlornly begging the Penn crowd to do the Society next year in Philadelphia, as patriotic Philadelphians do every year when they journey to PA Society.
"They're saying Arlene twisted it." - New Philly state school oversight board chairman Pedro Ramos, when asked why his arm was in a splint. Referring to ousted school chief Arlene Ackerman. Workers' comp jokes, too (since Ackerman filed for unemployment after she had to leave.)
 "Spanglish is fine. We all speak it." - Lawyer turned broadcast operator Ken Trujillo in the temporary studio of El Voz Radio 1340 as he invited Ramos, district attorney Seth Williams and me to the live mike.

"I support the institituion. I'm second-generation Penn State." - Prosecutor Seth Williams, asked about his choice to wear a Nittany Lion pin amid his brother district attorneys' prosecutions of university officials for failing to stop sexual abuse, up there in Happy Valley. 
"You gonna wear a crucifix, too?" - Me, asking Williams if he was likewise going to show solidarity with the Catholic Church, whose schools he also attended, and whose Philadelphia hierarchs he's currently prosecuting for failing to stop sexual abuse. (Williams had no answer.)
"Bloomberg's army. They're everywhere." - Blond skater dude outside the Metropolitan Club, as he watched Gov. Corbett's security detail whisk him into another limo.
"Jingle bells, fracking kills, smells like rotten eggs." - Carolers protesting energy lobbyists' influence in Harrisburg, greeting dinnner guests at the Waldorf Saturday night.

"You're poisoning Pennsylvania!" - Balcony protester to Gov. Corbett as the governor called for a return to a "Gilded Age," recalling the original Gilded Age, when big-city investors (like the guys who founded PA Society) made fortunes from untaxed, lightly-regulated Pennsylvania mineral extraction.
"We all have our First Amendment rights." - Corbett's comeback.

"Rendell would have had something snappier." - Philadelphia lawyer. "He's sticking it to Corbett!" - Same lawyer, when the night's honoree, astronaut Guion Bluford (Overbrook High '61), pointedly praised the public schools whose spending record and educational product Corbett has challenged.

"We're committed to doing the right thing for victims and their families." - Acting Penn State President Erickson, sounding like a bishop facing a full docket of altar-boy suits.

"After-parties? Like prom night." - My colleague Angela Couloumbis, on the phenomenon of post-PA Society after-parties (sponsored by Marcellus Shale drillers and other energy interests.)  #PAsociety