New News in the World of Not News
We here at Riptide just can't get our news fast enough. So we were pleased as pudding when the Miami Herald came up with an idea that means we no longer have to read goodbye headaches!
Now the day's five most digestible stories are trumpeted on the Herald Website through the mouths of J.R. and Toni, a pair of insipidly upbeat people. They sing; they dance; they make the not news much easier to not read. Their daily show is called What the Five?
According to Rick Hirsch, the Herald's multimedia editor, the dozen or so members of their Web team have been toying with the idea for nearly a year. What the Five? has been running along smoothly now for about three months.
"It's not a newscast," Hirsch insists. He describes it, instead, as a "roundup" of the day's five most "talky" stories.
Is this a sign of the oncoming news apocalypse? Maybe. We would like things dumbed down just a wee bit more before we venture a guess. Calvin Godfrey
Pay to Play
Filed Under: News
With Simon Cruz running for mayor of Miami Beach, the race to fill his open city commission seat is shaping up to be the city's most expensive race ever, the political version of De La Hoya versus Mayweather. Contenders Luis Salom and Jonah Wolfson have raised a combined $185,000, and the election isn't until November 6.
Wolfson, a 32-year-old civil attorney who moved to Miami Beach six years ago, has raised $95,000, including a $55,000 loan he made to his own campaign. His donors include art collector Martin Margulies and former Herald writer Edna Buchanan. Salom, a 44-year-old real estate investor and businessman, is a former Miami Beach Senior High football star who has lived in Miami Beach since 1968. Salom's contributors include publicist Seth Gordon, developer Louis Wolfson III (no relation to Jonah), and backers of chic Beach locales the Forge, Suite, and Tantra.
"The beautiful thing is that I am getting support across the board," Salom boasted at a recent fundraiser that netted $5000. "Every segment of the Beach is behind me."
Wolfson, who got on the ballot by obtaining 800 signatures from Beach residents, insisted he is not concerned with Salom's entrenched ties to the city's business establishment. "We are running a well-funded grassroots campaign," Wolfson asserts. "I'm not at a disadvantage whatsoever."
But Wolfson's campaign has run into some trouble with the abrupt departure of public relations advisor Michael Sasser. The former Sun Post editor is well known among Miami Beach's political and civic leaders. According to an anonymous source, Sasser left Wolfson over a dispute with the candidate's campaign manager, David Custin, a Miami-based political consultant whose "modus operandi is to conduct hit pieces and negative attacks on his client's opponents," the source relays. "But they don't know that stuff doesn't work on the Beach. No one votes for the guy running an ugly campaign."
Sasser says he quit over "creative differences" with Wolfson and Custin. He declined to elaborate.
Wolfson denies he is going to smear Salom. "David came highly recommended," Wolfson says. "He is an intelligent and hardworking man." Francisco Alvarado
Clash of the Bronze Titans
Filed Under: Eye Candy
Flags at other beaches in the area warned of rip currents. Somewhere miles offshore, Tropical Storm Andrea fed the tumultuous seas. On Key Biscayne, however, the sea was smooth as a glass plate. No matter. Heroes are hard to find these days, particularly ones with sculpted pectorals, perfect tans, and tiny swimsuits.
The largest of five trophies gleaming in the afternoon sunshine awaited the winner of Miami-Dade County's Eleventh Annual Ocean Lifeguard Tournament this past Wednesday. Gladiators from ocean rescue departments in Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood, Miami-Dade County, Miami Beach, and Boca Raton competed in swimming, running, paddling, rowing, and other lifesaving feats.
Tents were set up on the sand. The lifeguards ate oranges and applied protective schmears of zinc oxide to their noses. Men and women with inverted pyramids for torsos jogged to and fro, adjusting swim caps. When asked who would win, scorekeeper Satrina Dorsey scoffed, "Miami-Dade County, all the way."
The first event, called Row Out/Swim In, "is a way of honoring our origins," said Luiz Morizot, a Miami-Dade Ocean Rescue Lieutenant, citing the days when drowning swimmers were reached by rowboat.
The winner, Jose Bolivar, estimates he has dealt with approximately 50 drowning situations in his ten years in Hollywood.
"And maybe four hundred or five hundred ocean rescues," he added.
Bolivar, it turns out, is a lifeguard tournament superstar. His tan is deep and his shoulders measure a condor's wingspan. He holds the 2006 state title in the Iron Man category. His goal is to make it to the ocean rescue world championship in Australia, where he will compete against other tan people with chiseled muscles from beaches around the planet.
Bolivar's prowess notwithstanding, Hollywood fell short of victory. The winner?
Miami-Dade County. All the way. Emily Witt
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Resurrection of Yahweh Ben Yahweh "Well, it's only Thursday," says Kareem of Korn, a Temple spokesman. "We figure if Jesus took three days, maybe that's the benchmark. We'll wait a little longer for Yahweh to make his move."
"Besides," says Rose from the Dead, "Jesus only had one rock and a cave. Ben Yahweh has a whole subdivision and shopping center, as well as Miami Code Enforcement to deal with." She spits. "Not to mention The Man."
They're speaking seriously about Yahweh Ben Yahweh's anticipated return from the dead. Sons of god do this sort of thing, you know.
Taken from "Klotz" As in "Blood" (www.steveklotz.com/blog)