Saturday, February 21, 2009

It's "Last Day-Care Center Standing" -- with contestants Michelle, Sarah, Hillary, and Nancy. PLUS: George Will is bitch-slapped!


Chef Raymond in one of his restaurants, Le Manoir

by Ken

Say, is anybody else watching the second season of BBC America's Last Restaurant Standing?

I think maybe what I love about it is watching the great Raymond Blanc -- the French-born chef who has built a restaurant empire in the U.K. but still speaks with an accent that makes it sound as if he just got off the train from Paris -- look so condescendingly wise as he chastises the latest failures of the two-person teams (nine of them at the start) who dream of running a restaurant and have been enabled by Raymond and the show's producers to run a more-or-less actual restaurant (they have actual restaurant spaces in actual real-world locations and do actual dinner services for actual paying customers), with one team eliminated in each two-part round for having failed the worst.

The prize for the winning couple (with, basically, one cooking and the other handling front-of-house) is opening an actual actual restaurant with Raymond. (One of this season's contesting couples had the cheek to name their restaurant "Ray White's," an anglicized version of their hoped-for partner's name. They're not doing too well, maybe because the doofusy-looking guy who cooks doesn't seem to cook very well.) And I hope you appreciate the sacrifices an activist-blogger makes in the course of performing his services. In the course of, er, researching this item, or basically looking for a good photo to use with it, I ventured onto the website of The Restaurant, the show's actual name back home (clearly not sexy enough for the American market) -- the actual BBC website, that is.

Since the season we're seeing here now has long since concluded over there, they prominently feature the winning couple, a piece of knowledge I had no desire to acquire. To make matters worse, still looking for a good pic, I went back and looked closer, and wound up finding out who the runner-up couple is. Now there really seems hardly any point in watching the rest of the series.

By the way, they're currently accepting applications for the next season, through March 31.

But I digress. What I meant to say was that all I could think of when I saw the following item was Last Restaurant Standing, perhaps rejiggered as Last Day-Care Center Standing, which in more reserved British parlance would be just The Day-Care Center, I guess.

The item comes from the "It's a Preposterous Job, But Somebody's Got to Do It" Dept., by whom I mean MediaMatters' Jamison Foser, who has to sift through all that media muck to come up with treasures like this, as reported on MM's "County Fair" blog:
Nice job on the Stimulus, Madame Secretary. but shouldn't you be changing some diapers?

Published Sat, Feb 21, 2009 9:21am ET by Jamison Foser

US News & World Report's Washington Whispers page currently features a poll asking readers who they would prefer to run a daycare center for their kids: First Lady Michelle Obama, Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, or Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.

And no, the poll doesn't offer the obvious fifth choice: "Why the hell would anyone ask this question?"

Of course, no female "secretary" we know of -- and certainly not the one in this group -- has been closely involved in the stimulus fight, but we get the idea. Does US News?


I mean, really outstanding. Somehow our George has positioned himself as a sage who is conservative, yes, but who is the repository of infinite wisdom and, you know, balance. In fact, he's not only one of the worst-informed but most openly dishonest pundits in the business, and a past master at "playing the angles."

No kidding, don't miss it! Of course there's books' worth of material that could be considered, considering the volume of lies our George has spewed into print, not to mention out onto the airwaves. But Jamison has done a bang-up job of framing the issue.

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