You know for a fleeting moment, but only for a moment, I thought I might’ve gotten it wrong about Westchester Magazine’s profile on Westchester County Executive Andy Spano (April issue) and his strange obsession with the alleged poor eating habits of his constituency.
I briefly had second thoughts about a March 27 column in which I poked fun at the Chef Andy piece because, while it succeeded as a lighter-than-air, butt-smooching paean to the old boy and his culinary magic, it also had the hilarious and wholly unintentional effect of making him out to be an imperial boob. The author, Ann Loftin, regaled us with little asides about the county executive’s supermarket excursion with his bodyguard, his three houses, his four cars in the driveway (including a limousine and SUV underwritten by county taxpayers) and the harp he bought on one of his many “junkets” to China.
This was priceless stuff, an unwitting expose. I couldn’t resist taking a shot at the whole package, including the funny photo of Spano in full chef’s attire dicing onions in his Yorktown Heights kitchen. He was photographed only from the waist up, leaving one to wonder if he was actually wearing pants.
The title of the piece, “Andy Spano Makes Lunch,” also was wonderfully banal. It had a Mr. Rogers ring to it, I wrote.
Taking all this craziness into consideration, I worried in hindsight that maybe Loftin’s profile really was brilliant satire, a skillful unveiling of an emperor without any clothes, let alone pants. Silly me!
No, it truly was an “innocuous apolitical feature,” says Robert Schork, some guy who answered the column in Westchester magazine’s “blog”:http://www.westchestermagazine.com/ which I encourage you to read as an example of a rather fruitless attempt to engage in some sort of witty riposte.
They did do one funny thing, however. They photo-shopped my head on Mr. Rogers’s body. This was an unexpected surprise since the magazine, which usually delivers on such in depth topics as the “Ten Least Painful Dentists,” is never, ever funny. At least not intentionally. So touche!
But Robert, I must tell you that I don’t wear Cardigan sweaters just as I assume you don’t wear tight leotards– though it occurs to me that I may be incorrect on that point, judging from your publication’s propensity for articles on dance-a-robics.
I must inform you, Robert, that I don’t eat all that much junk food. OK, that’s a lie. I like Walter’s hotdogs, so sue me you tofu-eating twit.
But I do not “obsess” over what Spano eats. Jeez, what a revolting notion. On the contrary, I only obsess over his clueless waste of taxpayers’ money on relentless, condescending campaigns which purport to tell people how to live their lives. Bugger off, Spano!
Robert, you seem like a nice guy. So I hereby apologize for slapping you around over this. If you were sitting here right now, I’d treat you to a twinkie and maybe bounce you on my knee.
But I draw the line at Ms. Loftin and her rejoinder. Somebody over at Westchester magazine did her a disservice by letting her leap into the fray with yet another totally unintentional funny that “maybe it’s true” that Spano is hosing the taxpayers. (I’ll bet Spano will love that.)
“But.” Ann writes, “the sad fact is that our public officials could be making mega-millions in the private sector for doing nobody any good whatsover.”
Ann, excuse me for this… But are you insane?
Well, this proves only that you guys are acting as shameless shills for the ancien regime. I expect better from you.
That’s because I like you. I really do. And I must thank you for the opportunity to shoot the proverbial ducks in a barrel.
Viva la revolucion!
I’ll pass on the freelance offer.