“My Sweet Coconut”

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October 3, 2008 4:24 p.m.

From the “you can’t make this up” file, a McCain foreign policy adviser claimed today that the candidate’s decades-long interest in Latin America is exemplified by the fact that he had a girlfriend in Brazil 50 years ago while he was in the Navy:

Speaking at an Americas Conference panel discussion Friday on the next U.S. president’s Latin American policy, McCain advisor Richard Fontaine started out by mentioning an old Brazilian flame of McCain’s, who recently emerged in the press.

”Talking a little about his personal experience, he was famously born in Panama and has traveled all over the hemisphere for many years.” Fontaine said. “In fact, I saw, I guess it was last week, that his old girlfriend in Brazil has been found from his early days when he was in the Navy and was interviewed. She’s a somewhat older woman now than she was then, but it sorta speaks to the long experience he has had in the region — in the most positive terms.”

Fontaine was referring to former model Maria Gracinda Teixeira de Jesus, who recently gave an interview to O Globo saying the former sailor was quite the kisser. According to McCain’s memoirs, `Faith of My Fathers,` they met in 1957, when his ship, the USS Hunt docked in Brazil.

”I called him John but also my darling and my sweet coconut,” she said. “He was a great kisser. I liked it so much that I bought a book to learn how to kiss myself.”

She goes on to say that if McCain wins the election, she’ll send him a telegram.

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