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Of All The Pictures In All The World ...

Did anybody fail to notice the dominant art on the Sentinel sports page today? It's Maria Sharapova bending down after a serve. But what's she's really serving up is maximum cleavage. You know some of that plum, fair, privileged Sharapova cleavage that you don't come across every day (if you don't happen to have a copy of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition, that is). And I'm not even mentioning the vertical splits action.


I certainly don' t have a problem with it. Photographer Robert Duyos -- who is an excellent sports photographer -- has a hell of an eye. But I'm not sure you can get anymore obvious. Unless you count this picture of model Camille Neviere, which clearly shows the outline of that which is forbidden on TV.

Speaking of which, did anybody notice the front page of the Sentinel's Lifestyle section yesterday? I may just be super-sensitive to these things, but you could see right through the bathing suit on the model on the right. At least in the newspaper, you could.

I've been meaningless shots of scantily dressed celebrities laced throughout the newspaper lately, but the Sentinel seems to be upping the ante on the local sex quotient. Again, I'm not complaining. I'm just saying.

Not Cool A great reader followed me up on my request for a Nexis check on the number of times Leslie Gray Streeter has used the word "cool" in her copy. Beginning in November 2001 it turns out she's written the word 382 times. That's not cool -- that's a crutch (I know I recently used a variation of that same phrase recently, but hey, it works for me).

Ben Stein Is An Idiot Stephanie Horvath's lede on herstory in the Palm Beach Post on Ben Stein:

"Ben Stein might be Hollywood's smartest celebrity."

Has Horvath ever heard this man yammer about politics? Did she know he called the Abu Ghraib prison abuses "fratboy mistreatment" (and, no, he wasn't joking). Did she know that he said that George W. Bush "is going to go down in history as one of the great peacemakers and democracy-builders in the history of the world?" Let's see if he's right about that one. Hell, just go down the Media Matters list of Ben Stein's idiotic, pigheaded comments to get a good picture of who we're talking about here.

This isn't to single out Horvath, who is a fine reporter. This kind of quick hero worship feature is done every week. Famous person comes to town. Famous person talks to a group of self-serving, ultra-rich corpo-goons (in this case it was "SunTrust Bank clients"). Famous person gets fellated by local newspaper. The editors expect nothing less and, God forbid, nothing more.

But it makes no sense. Wouldn't it make more enjoyable copy if you challenge these people a bit? Don't you think that people see right through this fluff and wind up respecting us a little less the next morning? All readers aren't brainless barnyard animals, you know. Just half of them and they don't know the difference anyway.

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Journalist Bob Norman has been raking the muck of South Florida for the past 25 years. His work has led to criminal cases against corrupt politicians, the ouster of bad judges from the bench, and has garnered dozens of state, regional, and national awards.
Contact: Bob Norman

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