Friday, December 24, 2010

Co-Weasels of the Week: Noah Ellis and the editors of the NY Post

Plenty of weasel ears to hand out on Christmas Eve.

First stop is New York. By now, everyone has heard about the latest scandal involving New York Jets coach Rex Ryan. Deadspin, quickly turning into the Wikileaks of sports, especially in New York, claims that it is Ryan's wife, Michelle, appearing in a series of foot fetish videos that have appeared on YouTube. The New York Post made this a page one story on Thursday. Rival New York Daily News did the same, but only in their local editions. The copies that were distributed outside NYC had a different front page story. The Post, like its British cousin, The Sun, subscribes to the belief that, in the words of TNA's Eric Bischoff, "Controversy Creates Cash", which was the title of Bischoff's 2007 autobiography. The Chicago Tribune had some fun (The Jets play the Bears this week), designing their article on the scandal in the shape of---what else?---a foot. However, the key word in all this is, alleged. For the 2nd time this year, the Post editors get tagged with weasel ears for throwing respect, dignity, & common sense out the door in favor of catering to the lowest common denominator, or, as the News' Bob Raissman would say, the "Valley of the Stupid".

Next, we go across the country to Beverly Hills, where restaurant owner Noah Ellis has banned a Los Angeles Times critic from his eatery because of a past reputation of negative reviews. Hogwash! If Ellis is that sensitive about the perception of his business, barring a specific critic for petty, selfish reasons is the wrong way to go. It's one thing to bar particular customers because of bad, boorish behavior, but if the critic is an influential writer, Ellis is risking losing a lot of future business. Critics' judgements are subjective, based on their experience on a particular visit. Ellis, you would think, would understand that, but apparently, he's developed a very thin skin. Perhaps he's gotten one too many negative reviews from other critics, and is afraid another one, appearing in the Times, would be too damaging. Shame, shame, shame on Ellis. Weasel is not a delicacy in most restaurants, but Ellis is certainly behaving like one, so he is so deemed to be one.

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