The Id and The Odyssey; Episode 75

Food Critic

After a couple of quiet days of Gordon working as if the deadline was five minutes away Rich tossed a paper ball that hit him in the back of the head. He turned around, confused.
“Gordon,” Rich said, “how ‘bout if I take you to lunch today.”
He looked back at his typewriter. He thought for a moment and turned around to Rich long enough to say, “What time?”
“Noon,” Rich said. “Yeah, we’ll let the city run itself.”
“Noon,” he confirmed and continued to peck away at the typewriter like a mad man.
They drove to a small seafood restaurant in Camden that was known for great off-season prices and good sea food.
Gordon looked over the menu. “Are you sure you can afford this?”
“Sure,” Rich said, leaned forward, and whispered, “I called ahead and told them I was doing a story on the place; food critic.”
“What,” Gordon said.
“They call ya Gordy don’t they?” Rich said.
“Yes,” he said reluctantly.
“Then it will be Gordon,” Rich said.
“No, no, that’s ok,” he said. “If ya start calling me Gordon I’ll think it’s my Mom. And before you go snooping around in my personal file the middle name is Dingwell. If you say it enough it stops sounding funny.”
“You come up here to work with Sam?” Rich asked.
“No, I couldn’t get a job anyplace else,” Gordy said looking with interest at something on the menu.
As Rich looked over the menu he said, “I’ve worked for him about a year and have been writing for him just a little less than a year; full time reporter for about six months. I know very little about the newspaper business or writing, but when I pick up a newspaper I can spot shallow and shoddy writing right away. You had to pass some pretty stiff competition to get this job.” Rich walked his fingers across the table. “What was your sentence?”
Gordy smiled, “He fell. The guy I beat out insisted on He fell down. Sam said to me the guy was an ignorant egghead, unless you’re three hundred and fifty miles in space you have only one direction to fall. The Globe or Times or Tribune can have him, his logic, and his many words. He’ll probably win a Pulitzer for falling up or sideways.”
“Sam told me I was the perfect student,” Rich said. “College hadn’t gotten a hold of me yet.”
“You never went to college?” Gordy said.
“No,”
“Really,” he said as if approving. “My Father owns a manufacturing company, radio equipment for the military. He has a hand full of engineers working for him, all college trained, and he solves problems for them all the time. Dad got kicked out of high school when he was a sophomore. It drove him.”
They ordered, ate, and the owner picked up the check.
They walked to the jeep. “How was it?” Rich said.
“Good,” Gordy said. “How about you?”
“Good,” rich said. “That’s two goods. Another 348 words and I got a story.”
“How ‘bout you write 174 and I write 174 and we split the byline?” Gordy said.

Not even here a month and you want to take my job as food critic,” Rich quipped.