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Winding Up on Countdown

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Moments after I completed my strange appearance on the CNN program hosted by Nancy Grace (see this blog for details), my wife received a phone call from a friend in New York. Even though he's not someone likely to be a regular Nancy Grace viewer (he works for The Daily Show on Comedy Central), she naturally assumed that he had seen my mug pop up on television. Instead, he revealed that the current Message had inspired an amusing item on MSNBC's Countdown With Keith Olbermann.

The column concerns Denver Post media writer Joanne Ostrow, who'd been tailed to a Wild Oats market and ambushed in the parking lot by one of Fox News personality Bill O'Reilly's producers after she'd declined to appear on Big Bill's regular program, The O'Reilly Factor. (O'Reilly wanted Ostrow to defend her view that he'd spewed "racist bile" in a heated debate with fellow Fox-er Geraldo Rivera.) Olbermann used this material to name O'Reilly April 19's "Worst Person in the World."

In the item, which you can see by clicking this link (unfortunately, you'll have to sit through a brief commercial first), Olbermann said Westword had inferred that while the actions of the producer may not have fit the legal definition of stalking, it came pretty close. That's not quite right; any such inferring was done either by Olbermann or his staff. Ostrow's name was mispronounced, too: It's Ahh-strow, not Ohh-strow. And yet the snippet was mighty amusing anyhow -- and coupled with the Nancy Grace appearance, it made for a busy night, Westword-wise, in the cable-news universe.

Think of it as a teensy palate cleanser amid a terrible news week. -- Michael Roberts

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

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Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.


Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.