Bourdain Gets Emmy Nomination – Finally

By Karen

In an off-week for personal appearances and book signings, Anthony Bourdain relaxes by picking up an Emmy nomination and giving away $10,000.

Tony’s writing on No Reservations: Prague earned him a personal Emmy nomination, and he’s not up against Ted Koppel this time. The only other nominee I think may give him trouble is The Buddha on PBS because, well — he’s a deity. The rest sound beatable: America: The Story of Us (History Channel), Challenges of Life (Discovery), and The National Parks: America’s Best Idea (PBS).

Good luck, Tony!

The Travel Channel’s owner, Scripps, issued a tweet congratulating “Andrew Bourdain” on his nomination. Food Network Humor theorized that Scripps mixed up Tony with Andrew Zimmern and showed what the result would look like.

Speaking of competition, there’s a rolling boil in the Medium Raw essays. Several Cats Working readers have entries, although not yours truly. The original prize was publication in the MR paperback edition — until Eater complained that Tony is exploiting writers without compensation and Gawker joined in.

Bourdain swiftly informed Eater that he is personally adding $10K to the pot and wants Eater’s editor to present it to the winner. Tony confirms this in his own blog post.

I vaguely remember Bourdain once saying either he’s never written anything he didn’t get paid for, or he doesn’t write unless it pays. I think it was the first one. Anyway, if somebody’s writing publishable work, it’s only fair to pay them something for it, although I doubt Bourdain himself has ever gotten $20 a word.

Denver Westword weighed in on the controversy and called Tony a “book pimp.”

But that was nothing compared SF Gate restaurant consultant Clark Wolf, who recently wrote, “I’ve had it with Tony Bourdain…. Frankly, I consider him the Rush Limbaugh of food. He makes cash spewing vitriol and lunacy designed to appeal to the struggling classes — workers and diners alike — he actually exploits.” Commenters on that post mostly defended Bourdain.

On July 6, Tony took on 4 interrogators at MSNBC’s Morning Joe and shot down the female host’s insistence that famous chefs should promote healthy eating.

This week, No Reservations visits America’s “Heartland,” and we see Tony eat in Michigan, Ohio (with his buddy Ruhlman), Texas, Colorado, Wisconsin, and Minnesota in scenes filmed between his personal appearances. Brandon at Room 214 again provided a link to the whole episode. Food looks good. Unknown chefs are as dedicated as anyone, and Tony realizes that even people in the ‘burbs and rural communities occasionally pass up McDonald’s to eat unusual dishes prepared well.

Bourdain also just blogged about how he’s coping with aging — and how Sylvester Stallone’s inability to cope has turned him into Mr. Potato Head.

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10 Responses to Bourdain Gets Emmy Nomination – Finally

  1. Adele says:

    The comparison of Sly Stallone to Mr. Potato Head and the way AB built up the suspense about whom Sly resembled had me guffawing. The boy can turn a phrase.

    NR and a Mad Men marathon; it’s a good TV night!

  2. Adele says:

    P.S. I’ll bet in his wildest dreams, Tony never thought he’d be competing with the Buddha for anything.

  3. catsworking says:

    I wonder if Tony’s BFF, Eric Ripert, will be secretly rooting for Buddha?

    Ooh, Mad Men is almost back. I think July 25 is the start of Season 4. I love it!

  4. C from Florida says:

    Hi catsworking! Congrats to AB. Check out my latest entry to the contest THE SILENCE OF THE CLAMS by Carol T. Other ones include MY FATHER’S FORK and NONA. I watched last nights No Rez episode but got a little turned off by the chef in Milwaukee (I think) and all that pressing (with something called “meat glue”), chilling, repressing, rechilling and then frying up a breast of Guinea Fowl. Then the chef took 2 days to make the accompanying sauce. AB said it was one of the best meals he ever ate but I thought the whole process was a bit silly. Am I being boorish or have I just been in North Florida too long?

  5. catsworking says:

    C, I love the title of your newest entry. I’ll check it out. I thoroughly enjoyed reading “My Father’s Fork,” but then I have a thing for Scandinavian seamen. (Another story.)

    I must confess that I didn’t watch the Heartlands episode too carefully, if only because I always see them again when I tape from On Demand to DVD (a trick I recently learned that eliminates 15 minutes of annoying commercials). It sounds like you’re talking about the charcuterie chef. I remember him wrapping some gunk that looked like cat food in bacon and sticking it in the oven.

    I love mystery meats like pepperoni, but just from the look of them, I think I’m better off not knowing exactly what goes into them.

    You sound like a kindred spirit. Yes, I think what some chefs do to turn something gross into some delicious is amazing and I appreciate the thought and effort they put into accomplishing it. But watching it over and over and OVER again on No Res is, admittedly, wearing me down. I seriously fear I’m burning out on watching Bourdain eat.

  6. Adele says:

    What exactly is meat glue? C, I’m with you about that guinea hen presentation. All through last night’s NR, I kept thinking I’d like to see a little more scenery and a little less food. But I guess the theme of the show was that there are avant garde chefs, even in the middle of the country, so the food was the star.

    I’m finding more and more that the NR shows I really love are the ones that take me someplace and not just through food but through some of Zero Point Zero’s incredible cinematography or the story of a place. I have a feeling next week’s Liberia show will be much more story — particularly because we know from his blog that AB was made quite ill by the food.

    BTW, Tony wrote a very moving obit (on the Travel Channel blog) to Harvey Pekar. I’m not a graphic novel fan, but I did see American Splendor and found Pekar to be so insistently himself and such a sharp observer of his world that I wished I liked graphic novels better.

  7. catsworking says:

    Today’s paper said they found Harvey Pekar dead in his home, cause of death unknown. How sad.

    Since the Heartlands episode was shot wherever Bourdain was doing an appearance, I guess it made sense for the crew to shoot most of the prep work at the restaurants and for him to just show up and eat, although he did spend a fair amount of time in the kitchens. He had enough to think about.

    I’ve always liked NR more for the travel. The night I discovered Bourdain while flipping channels, if he’d just been sitting there eating something, I probably wouldn’t have stayed to watch and he wouldn’t exist on Cats Working. I am always much more interested in his experiences as a traveler than in what he eats. But I do give him much of the credit for greatly expanding my knowledge and appreciation of all sorts of food, even if I soaked it in unintentionally

  8. MorganLF says:

    Bourdain’s piece on Pekar was lovely.

    As for the contest there are several dreck offerings that are being manipulated by professional vote drummers…Bourdain will ignore them.

  9. C from Florida says:

    Hi Morgan, thanks so much for the comment about the “vote drummers”. I read the offerings with the most votes and although it does take some effort to write an essay I figured the authors just had a lot of FACEBOOK pals. What an honor it would be for me to have AB read and comment on just ONE of my essays. Your encouraging words gave me a boost! Adele, the chef actually called it “meat glue” and it looked a bit like cornstarch didn’t it? Thanx catsworking for helping me find some new pals!!

  10. catsworking says:

    C and Morgan, this is just my opinion, but I don’t think reader votes will figure in at all when it comes to picking a winner (although, Morgan, you aren’t doing shabby with votes, and keeping yourself on the front page). But we know how Bourdain is. He’s an underdog man all the way. The essay he picks will probably have NO votes.

    C, I read your “Silence of the Clams.” It was very touching and wonderfully written. For those who haven’t seen it, she describes what the Gulf oil disaster is doing to seafood in Florida. You definitely have a way with words!

    There are so many good essays on that site (like pearls among the dreck), I wonder if HarperCollins would consider compiling the best of the best into an anthology with a foreword by Tony. Sort of a “Chicken Soup for the Foodie Soul.”

    I’m so proud that Cats Working has managed to attract so many excellent writers as readers and commenters.

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