Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Hooray for the hometown

The Enquirer's small town mind gets smaller and smaller. Almost nothing that happens in the world makes it into the Enquirer unless some local connection can be established. I was prepared for another lame former-local-guy story when I read the James Brown obituary in the Enquirer on Tuesday. It turned out Greg Korte's story was readable and interesting. Score one for shameless parochialism.

What puzzles me is this: When does the Enquirer decide to do or not do this? Jerry Berns died last week. He was the co-owner and greeter at New York's 21 Club, which was one of the nation's most famous restaurants. Read his New York Times obituary and you'll understand why. The 21 Club was one of those places that helped create New York City's aura, the kind of joint that made you want to pack your bags and go.

The local connection is this: His family sent him out of New York to keep him from running liquor during Prohibition, and he graduated from the University of Cincinnati. And what was his last job before he returned to New York to help run 21? He was drama critic for the Cincinnati Enquirer. I haven't found any evidence news of Berns' death ever appeared in the Enquirer. If you can find a link, please send it to me.

One thing hasn't changed since Berns left the Enquirer in 1938. The Enquirer continues to find ways to force its journalists to find new careers.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

There isn't really anyone at the Enquirer who remembers staff members from the 1930s!

3:48 PM  

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