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Opinion

Are you here to see Bill or Derek?

After New York attorney general Eliot Spitzer's appearance last year, whoever was guest speaker at the New York Financial Writers annual awards dinner this June was always going to have a tough act to follow. In fact, William McDonough, chairman of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, made a very good fist of it.

The trouble for McDonough was the competition he faced on the floor directly below the awards dinner at the New York Marriott Marquis hotel on Times Square.

On the sixth floor that evening, Derek Jeter, captain of baseball legends the New York Yankees was hosting a fundraising gala for his own Turn 2 Foundation, which encourages children to maintain healthy lifestyles. Among the celebrities in attendance were Jeter's teammates:

Alex Rodriguez, Hideki Matsui, Gary Sheffield, Jorge Posada and Tino Martinez. Even Jeter's ex-squeeze Mariah Carey turned up.

Guests arriving for both events were forced to share an elevator. When the attendant announced their arrival at the sixth floor, where Jeter and his chums were waiting, some intended for the Financial Writers dinner upstairs were sorely tempted to jump out a floor early.

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