Big Al puts the cowboy boot into Beijing's efforts

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 11 August, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 11 August, 2007, 12:00am

Former US vice-president Al Gore dropped in for a chat with business heavies over dinner on Thursday to give them the latest on climate change - for a bargain price believed to be above HK$30,000 a table.

Luminaries at the dinner included PCCW chairman Richard Li Tzar-kai, Standard Chartered Bank chief Peter Sullivan and Hong Kong Exchanges & Clearing chief executive Paul Chow Man-yiu. While our spy at the dinner said Mr Gore was engaging, funny and inspiring - speaking without slides or notes - it was clear diet and fashion are not high on his priority list.

Mr Gore cut an imposing figure at close to two metres tall, wearing a suit and ... cowboy boots. Yep, the low-cut dress variety, favoured in the south of the US.

The politician turned documentary star took shots at Beijing's environmental solutions for the 2008 Olympics, among other things green.

Mr Gore also made frequent references to food. A favourite with the crowd was a story about eating at Shoney's, one of those US pancake, buffet and burger-heavy diners. So obviously he didn't stay for last night's dinner at the Conrad.