Bragg'in' Rights to Katrina Coverage


FishbowlNY has performed a public duty by bringing to light one of the most disturbing developments in the wake of Hurricane Katrina: Masturbatory musings about New Orleans by literary ink-stained wretches.

Dismissed NY Timesman Howell Raines, for instance, laid down this misbegotten spontaneous dope prosody in the LA Times (a newspaper that is truly the Joyce DeWitt of major American dailies):

Oh, wondrous city of music that floats from the horn and poems drowned in drink! Oh, cheesy clip-clop metropolis of phony coach-and-fours hauling drunken Dodge salesmen, of gaunt-eyed transvestite hookers, of Baptist girls suddenly inspired to show their breasts on Chartres Street in return for a string of beads flung from the balcony of the Soniat House--will we lose even these dubious glories of the only American city that's never been psychoanalyzed?

But as Fishbowl makes clear, if Raines' prose is as fetid as the toilet water in the Superdome, it's another dismissed Timesman who really takes the beignet: Pulitzer Prize winner and serial journalistic miscreant Rick Bragg, who quit the Gray Lady in 2003 after getting caught fudging work. Writing in the Washington Post, Bragg took the occasion of the likely deaths of thousands to wax elegaic about getting laid in Raines' "cheesy clip-clop metropolis":

I fell in love with the city and a Louisiana State University sophomore on the same night, eating shrimp cooked seven ways in the Quarter, riding the ferry across the black, black river where fireworks burned the air at Algiers Point. I drank so much rum I could sleep standing up against a wall. The sophomore left me, smiling, but the city never did.

Boy, that's pure poetry; now we know why all those people were crying. We're only sorry to have missed the piece he surely must have written about getting double-teamed on a class trip to Sri Lanka after last December's tsunami .