Bourdain’s Travels End in the Lower East Side

By Karen

On November 11, CNN aired the final new episode of Parts Unknown that Anthony Bourdain’s crew could finish without him. Remaining in limbo is unseen footage from a shoot in May in Florence that Bourdain did with then-girlfriend Asia Argento. CNN has said it will not air whatever film was captured in the Alsace region of France with Eric Ripert during the week leading up to Bourdain’s suicide in June.

Tony’s final wander through the Lower East Side of Manhattan was given kaleidoscopic effects that may have mimicked the mental downward spiral he was trying to conceal. The visit aptly brought his life full circle by showing his stomping grounds of the 1970s and ‘80s, when he was a young heroin addict who thought he had no future.

Once fame found Bourdain, and particularly when he became a father at age 50, we watched him reject, one by one, the trappings of that former life: his thumb ring, his earring, his leather jacket and smoking.

But in the end, he was heavily smoking Marlboro Reds again, and the last leather jacket he chose looked as weathered and worn as the man himself had become.

Bourdain in Lower East Side of Manhattan

(Photo – David Scott Holloway/CNN)

I confess that I had mostly never heard of the musicians, artists, writers and poets Tony met and reminisced with. I’m only about two years older than he, but I must have been living on a different planet, although decades ago I got a taste of his origins.

My family was transferred to New Jersey in 1969 and I became a freshman at Freehold High School, about 50 miles south of Leonia, where Tony would have been in 7th grade. Had we met then, he probably would have scared the shit out of me. I was still reading Little Women, but found myself surrounded by tough kids who smoked pot, had sex and terrorized the teachers.

We moved again when I was a sophomore and I blocked out my year of living dangerously in Freehold, but it would all come rushing back whenever I saw Bourdain talk about his disaffected youth.

The ZPZ cinematographers really captured the LES’s cigarette butts, garbage, graffiti, abandoned shopping carts — a landscape Bourdain could wax nostalgic about. Spinning and blurry video, close-ups of dolls with dead eyes and dirty bare feet, and talk of rats completed the picture. Did I see some man about to bite off a mouse’s head?

From that squalor, thanks to the power of his writing, Bourdain’s world evolved into a $13,000-a-month 64th-floor apartment with river views at Columbus Circle.

Finally, forget the bone marrow or sushi Tony always cited as last-meal preferences. The last meal of his TV career was plain eggs boiled by artist John Lurie in his apartment. It must have been when Tony admired and bought Lurie’s painting, “The sky is falling. I’m learning to live with it.”

The LES episode was filmed in April 2018. That’s when Tony paid Jimmy Bennett $200,000 to make Bennett drop his claim that Argento had raped him when he was under the age of consent.

During the final montage of frantically swirling graphics, I wondered if that’s what Tony saw in his last moment. The accompanying music was Johnny Thunders’ “You Can’t Put Your Arms Around a Memory,” and if you listened carefully, you could hear Tony’s 11-year-old daughter Ariane singing along.

If Bourdain had lived to polish the episode, I have no doubt his narrative would have pulled it all together, making the gritty Lower East Side the natural spot for young Tony to hone his tastes in music and art. But without his reassuring voiceover, seeing his sad-eyed, now-haggard face just highlighted for me the dreadfulness of seeing Anthony Bourdain’s hard-won ascent to bestselling author and revered world traveler end in oblivion in a lonely French hotel room.

121 Responses to Bourdain’s Travels End in the Lower East Side

  1. takouris says:

    I could only watch part of this. I got to the part where he interviewed Debbie Harry. I was heartbroken knowing what happened next and knowing that we’ll never see another new episode or new interview of him.
    I was so rattled by what I watched and so depressed that it affected me in my sleep and into the next day. I felt the same sadness and emptiness that I felt on the morning of June 8…when I heard my phone go off many times and wondered what the hell was going on….and I picked it up and all I had to see was “Anthony Bourdain” and I knew the worst had happened.

  2. Anita says:

    Karen, I can’t bring myself to watch any of these shows yet. They are all saved on my DVR. I guess knowing it’s the last is still too much to bear.

    I always hated the psychedelic type shows Anthony did and much preferred his genteel side. But as we know he carried both inside of him and probably fought with both sides constantly. As you wrote, if he had more of a chance to do the voice over it would have softened things up a bit.

    I do look forward to seeing all of these shows at some point just to honor his final work. Thinking a cold rainy miserable Saturday will be fitting somehow.

  3. Lenora says:

    Count in me in as another long time fan who can’t bring myself to watch the last season. When I am watching CNN I can’t even handle the previews for the episodes. I am depressed just reading your take. However thank you for sharing. I’d would have had bad dreams too after watching. Its all tragic. I wish there was something out there to honor and memorialize him right now like the market that never got off the ground.

  4. catsworking says:

    Lenora, there are many tributes to Bourdain still being held by chefs and restaurants all over the place. Some of them are unveiling permanent murals of him in their venues.

    Most seem to be special dinners or fundraisers for suicide prevention. One chef cooked a menu from Tony’s Les Halles Cookbook.

    I think there’s a tour operator in Vietnam offering tours retracing his steps there, or something like that.

    The family never did anything public, but many people in food and travel are remembering him in their own ways. What really got to me recently was seeing an ad for the Cayman Cookout in January without Bourdain.

    One thing I didn’t specifically say in my post was that I didn’t particularly enjoy the LES episode, but that’s because nothing about it resonated with me. Bourdain looked spent, the cinematography was unhinged for effect in too many places, and I hate his kind of music even on a good day.

    I think the only name I recognized was Debbie Harry, and I don’t even know why. I had no idea who she was. Yes, I’m really THAT out of touch with music. 😦

    Watching this last season has been hard, mainly because he was so clearly going downhill physically, and probably mentally, with the strain of keeping AA happy.

    Next up… CNN’s feature documentary on his life, coming to theaters next year.

  5. Tina Akouris says:


    “Watching this last season has been hard, mainly because he was so clearly going downhill physically, and probably mentally, with the strain of keeping AA happy.”

    This is why we, I think, are all upset at what happened and cannot watch the final season. Because we know in the back of our minds what he was going through at the time and we can see the end coming.

    When I watch “No Reservations” it is like watching another person. Someone totally different from the man who was on the past few seasons of “Parts Unknown.” The Tony from “No Reservations” is funny, jovial, energetic…at least on screen. It makes me want to jump into the film and warn him of what’s coming.

  6. leeduigon says:

    Yes, he really looks sad and haggard.

  7. Francis Alan Wormald says:


  8. catsworking says:

    Tina, whenever I see or read about him, I automatically check the date. If it was before April 2016, he was “pre-AA.” Anything later was the beginning of the end. Even without the date, I can usually tell just by looking at him if the succubus had latched on yet.

    The other day I was reading an interview with Fabrizio Corona, the ex-con AA is hooking up with now. He sounds EXACTLY like Bourdain did in the beginning. It’s from November 8, so last week. Apparently he’s doing Italian Big Brother. The translation is a bit rough, but you’ll get the drift…

    The latest scoop on the daring life of Fabrizio Corona concerns the love affair erupted with Asia Argento. “She is me. The first time I saw her at her home in the afternoon before heading to big brother, for that then I was a little stunned, because my head was somewhere else! Us-continues – we are filled with chaos, two people who suffered. In 15 days that we’ve been dating knows me better than someone who always attends, because we like, we have an inner torment that is difficult to understand. ” Whether in love, Fabrizio says, “I’m hooked, I love it. Asia is not like other girls, is another thing. You have read my books. After making love asked me a dedication on my book ‘ Mea culpa ‘ and I wrote: ‘ you are God and I’d love to believe it again. We feel every day I see you again next week. I want to spend some wonderful time with her. When it comes to Milan I’d let her know Carlos, but she preaches calm, because she’s a woman of 43 years “.

    AA has found her next victim. And here’s a link to a nudie he posted of himself back in August, so they’re birds of a feather, right down to the tats…

    JUST ADDED: Carlos is Fabrizio’s 16-year-old son. AA has a 17-year-old daughter.

  9. Tina says:

    Oh. My. God.
    What planet is this woman from? It’s frightening.
    Thank you for posting.
    Thank you for all your hard work.
    And thank you for giving us a forum to discuss Tony.
    We love you, Karen.

  10. L Villeneuve says:

    Karen, exactly when did you start posting about Tony and what a journey you both have taken together!!

  11. catsworking says:

    Tina, you guys are my therapy. If I didn’t have a place to hash out my thoughts about Bourdain and many other things, my head would explode.

  12. catsworking says:

    LV, the first post I’m finding is from December 12, 2007…

    But what puzzles me is that I start out describing how I became interested in him through his writing as if I’m introducing readers to him, but then my tone becomes as if I’ve written about him a lot before. There’s nowhere else I would have done that. And the first post from August 2007 clearly indicates it’s a new blog, so nothing written earlier got dropped by WordPress.

    ADDED LATER: OMG, if you want your mind blown, go back to the post where I first “found” Ottavia and clink the link to the Ink segment. It’s still out there. I think this is the one that put me on the Bourdains’ radar because Ottavia would surf the ‘net looking for what people were saying about him and she found Cats Working.

  13. Dingobeast says:

    I haven’t watched this yet. I have a hard time seeing him so empty, sad and drained.

    Ugh, poor Fabrizio. I think that Asshat likes to pretend to be ‘the cool girl’, and she will act like she is EXACTLY like the guy she is interested in conning. It works well with guys that have a narcissistic bent (sorry, Tony, but you were). When she and Tony started dating, she pretended she was very punk rock and took lots of pics of her at the boxing ring. That stuff is gone now, she has started bathing and washing her hair again, dressing in decent clothing. She is an actress after all, but nobody can pretend forever.

  14. Joanne says:

    I don’t usually post , mainly because I can’t write for shit,(being a nurse for 36 years and writing nurses notes all day about shit and bodily fluids and odors ) sorry TMI. But I really enjoyed Anthony. Funny self deprecating sense of humor, his F-bombs his drug use and the way he just put all out there Like he was saying “this is me like it or go fuck yourself” And he was so handsome, he was the kind for guy I always fell for in school, I loved the bad boy, I actually married the bad boy, who ended up to be the most stable loving man on the planet. Thank you Karen, and everyone else who posts here about Anthony I hope his daughter is doing OK, I always think about her when I watch one of his episodes. Hey at least you had the chance to meet him and get a kiss on the cheek LOL just a little jealous.

  15. catsworking says:

    Dingobeast, I did check her IG the other day and there was a pic of her with a blowout. With clean, straight hair, she was almost unrecognizable. She’s also lost the “fist of no shame” avatar and has replaced it with a “come hither” headshot. She has definitely put Bourdain in the rear-view and is on the prowl again. She’ll morph herself into her victim’s ideal woman until she turns on him for the kill. She’s like Zelig, only purely evil.

    Joanne, if you are married to a Bourdainish bad boy, I’M just a little jealous. You hit the jackpot!

    I wonder if the ratings for the final season of Parts Unknown will suffer because people simply can’t bear to watch knowing he’s gone?

  16. bamboo.skewer says:

    You, dear Karen, have a power with words. You can make people see this episode. Thus, I don’t have to see the actual episode. I don’t want to see this season, ever. The bit about Ariane’s singing is everything there is to know about the episode.

    Meanwhile, AA has cast off all the stink from this summer. AA twirls in dresses and flirts with words of new love. Yeah right. She and her new man sound one and the same. We’ll see these lovers go to war with each other eventually, for sure.

    I only hope Tony’s family and friends are choosing to play the long game. I only hope they have something to release whenever an inevitable book comes out. I hope they have impeccable timing, and the timing just wasn’t quite right yet. Or perhaps, they are living with Tony’s wishes. If he wished for the simplest of send-offs, a war in the media with AA would become the opposite of that.

  17. catsworking says:

    Bamboo, thank you so much. I will say that if you don’t ever watch this last episode, you won’t feel deprived. I’ve stockpiled several old ones of Tony with Eric Ripert that I’ll be watching again. Marseille and Sichuan. I deleted all those where he’d probably be sitting in the dirt, digging mush out from a communal bowl with his hands. (So shoot me, I’m a Western wimp who likes chairs and utensils.)

    I still believe we haven’t heard the whole story and that it will come out eventually in some way when those who were close to him gain some distance and feel like they can talk about it.

    It’s going to be interesting to see how AA chews up and spits out this Fabrizio Corona once she realizes he’s not as wealthy as she hopes he is. Maybe she’s angling for him to get her a bed on the next season of Big Brother. Can you imagine being cooped up in a house with that scheming she-devil? It would make great TV because she’d probably sleep with everyone, male or female, but they’d all be mentally destroyed. She’d inflict more damage on the house than a termite infestation.

  18. Donna Pavone says:

    I don’t know where my comment went, I was riding the subway maybe it’s in the tunnel somewhere but DAMN Karen this is the best post you’ve ever written! CNN should give you a show! You write with blood sweat tears and all kinds of DNA….PS I won’t be watching this episode

  19. catsworking says:

    Donna, thank you to you and others who have had kind words for me. It made my struggle over the wording of this post worth it. It was delayed because it felt incoherent to me, like the episode itself.

    It’s been really hard to capture my complicated feelings about Bourdain. Once we connected in person, he seemed more like a brother or cousin whom I felt compelled to keep an eye on, even though our backgrounds were very different. I was intrigued by him on TV, but when I realized he was also a writer when I found his book A Cook’s Tour by chance, I instantly plugged in to his writer’s soul. The outer trappings — drugs, music, tats — were always irrelevant. I followed him all these years feeling like a kindred spirit in our devotion to communicating through words.

    I guess I managed to convey some of that this time. Thanks for letting me know I succeeded.

  20. Rachel says:

    I liked the last episode a LOT. But I grew up in New York and though I was a preteen during the 70s, I knew exactly what was going on around me (I vividly remember the Son of Sam murders because a few of them occurred a few miles from my own neighborhood) and the NYC Blackout of 1977. Yes NYC was gritty back then but it never bothered me as a child growing up. My neighborhood was pretty safe overall. And I loved punk rock bands like the Ramones, Blondie etc. So I actually thought Tony seemed like a star-struck kid from the suburbs who was genuinely excited he was interviewing his idols. He looked much happier in this episode than he did in Bhutan, for example. I encourage everyone to watch it. The ending montage to the Johnny Thunders song (which was sung by Mike Ruffino, who worked on the music for Parts Unknown, was moving.

  21. Farid says:

    Watched the LES episode. He’d come back full circle where it all began. It reminded me of one of his crime novels, Bone in the Throat. I particularly enjoyed his conversation with Danny Fields.

    That’s it folks. No more Bourdain.

    The world is darker and colder after you left us. I will forever miss you Tony. I hope they serve Pappy Van Winkle wherever you are …

  22. feijicha says:

    Like many on here I have not been able to watch any of the final season. Reading that poor sap’s description of AA was so sad because it in many ways mimicked Tony’s gushing over her in the beginning. I agree with those who’ve said this new guy will be changing his tune when her facade drops. As for the picture at the top of this post, to me he looks very styled– as in, by a stylist. The jacket looks like a faux designer ‘weathered’ jacket that you pay thousands for. The sweater and the scarf….. only the grungy jeans seem authentic. But what do I know. If I were able to watch any of the final season shows, oddly, I’d want to see the final footage in France. Not sure it would answer my lingering questions, but seeing his demeanor during that week……

  23. catsworking says:

    feijicha, I know I’ve seen him wearing the gray scarf before, and I think also the sweater. I don’t believe he had any wardrobe help. He tended to wear the same clothes, and they all looked pretty worn. Agreed, he probably bought the jacket looking like it did, not from his extensive wear. There was a spell where he wore a jersey with horizontal stripes a lot.

    Agree it would be interesting to see him in France sharing at least one meal with Eric Ripert, knowing what was going on with AA in the background, just to see how he was coping for the cameras. Maybe the CNN documentary will include some of it. Maybe not, too painful.

    Rachel, the way you described your growing up in NY is EXACTLY what I meant. I came from the ‘burbs of Massachusetts and Ohio before we got to New Jersey. The “big cities” of Boston and Columbus might as well have been Paris. The schools I’d attended up to Freehold were filled with innocent kids like me who didn’t know anything about anything. Sure, there were some bad kids, but they were rare and kept to themselves.

    When I got to Freehold, all the kids seemed like bad kids. I remember a riot in the school over a shooting in town. Kids were rampaging through the halls, writing on the walls with markers. The teachers lost control. It made the local news and a caravan of parents showed up to get their kids out of there. Of course, mine didn’t come.

    In fact, my locker was in a remote hallway, too far to get to between classes. So I’d go in the morning and carry around all my books for the day, because being caught in the hall after the bell meant falling into the clutches of a gray-haired witch who was always on patrol.

    The restrooms were always full of girls sitting on the sinks, smoking cigarettes or weed, so I learned to hold it all day because I was afraid to go in and try to pee while juggling a mountain of books.

    I made one friend, in gym class, and I learned years later that she befriended me mainly so she could tell her mother she was with me while she was going on dates with black guys. We kept in touch by letter after I moved away, and at some point she got beaten up in the restroom by black girls who didn’t like her messing with their men.

    When I say I lived a year in total terror in New Jersey, I’m not exaggerating. I STILL don’t feel as sophisticated and street-wise as those kids in Freehold.

  24. feijicha, I thought the outfit was strange too. I did notice that Tony was getting an “old-age” slouch that may be attributed to jiu-jitsu, age or a combination of both. This outfit camouflages the slouch. No idea if intentional or not though.

  25. Rachel says:

    Catsworking, not all of NYC kids were like the ones you described in Freehold (those were not “streetwise City kids” you went to school with, just bratty suburbanites). There were and are plenty of nice neighborhoods in NYC, even in the ’70s when NYC was at its “worst”. I never experienced any trouble and my friends were all very nice and well-behaved, no fights or violence whatsoever in my schools. We all grew up quite normally. We were obviously exposed to more and I was always aware of my surroundings. Never would take the subway late at night alone, for example. That’s just asking for trouble. I was always kind of amused by Anthony because he really wasn’t a streetwise NYC guy at all, it was more of an act that he put on to me. Even his drug problem which was something he ALWAYS referred back to, like a badge of honor, to me was a way he wanted to “prove” how “cool” he was.(Sorry but it’s not cool at all). But he was genuinely captivated by the creativity and freedom of NYC, like so many before him, and he celebrates that in this episode. I still live here and for all its issues, there’s a lot to love about New York City.

  26. catsworking says:

    Rachel, I love, love, LOVE NYC, and don’t get there nearly often enough. And I know there are plenty of good kids, and certainly good schools and neighborhoods in NYC (although you might not think it if you’ve watched any of The Deuce, which is set in NYC in the ’70s). I was just describing my one-off situation, and it was my first taste of serious racial tension. The trauma of it has stayed with me all these years. There was more than I’ve said, but I shared the gist. My parents were oblivious, so I just had to deal with it.

    Agree with you that Bourdain seemed to try really hard to be like one of the bad-ass kids, but his marshmallow center kept him from quite pulling it off.

    Fun fact – Bruce Springsteen also went to Freehold HS, but he graduated two years before I got there.

  27. feijicha says:

    Clem and Karen– Yeah I don’t know that he was actually using a stylist, just struck me that he in this pic has a much more kind of….what’s the word….”pulled together” look than his early more punk days. I guess I was reading your description, Karen, of the last episode in LES and the grunginess of it and your mentioning his days as an addict and the whole sort of punk thing and the earrings and the thumb ring and the tats and it conjured up the whole imagery in my mind of how he looked in those days and then seeing this picture and noting the contrast. Maybe it’s more that he looks more ‘grown up’ in this picture..? More world weary?? I think just the juxtaposition of this pic with the words in your description struck me as sort of representing what seemed like a change in his life over the intervening years. He looks definitely like a man with some success and wisdom here, I dunno, like a few of the rougher edges had been smoothed off versus the time in his life you were mentioning in parts of your description. The change had struck me. And yet, clearly, despite these sorts of outward changes, internally a lot of his issues remained from those earlier days.

  28. catsworking says:

    feijicha, I feel pretty confident in saying that he never had help with hair, makeup or wardrobe. Aside from the earring and thumb ring, his style remained pretty consistent, although as he got older, he wore more button-down shirts (untucked) and would don a sports jacket over jeans when he did TV interviews. And when he started getting nominated for awards, he looked debonair in a tux on red carpets. As the years went on, he learned to carry himself with more confidence, which made him look more polished, IMO. His “style” was no style, just comfort.

    The BIG news today is that Eric Ripert has started talking — a bit. He did an interview with Esquire where he said Bourdain at the end was working on writing and publishing projects, planning many more seasons of Parts Unknown, and writing a stand-up comedy routine. When Tony was in Kenya with Kamau Bell, he asked for pointers on joke-writing.

    It’s a start.

  29. Rachel says:

    New article has just come out. Michelin-starred French chef Daniel Boulud, a close friend of Anthony, was quoted saying that Anthony died of a broken heart. I think that now that Parts Unknown has ended, more of Anthony’s friends will come forward to tell what really happened between Asia and Anthony in the final days. Not a moment too soon, because disgusting AA and her equally sleazy and narcissistic new BF, Fabrizio Corona, are really enjoying all the publicity their “romance” is giving them. AA is literally dancing and whipping her hair around in her recent IG posts. Fabrizio purses his lips more than Kim Kardashian. They are such posers with their “rapping” and hoodies. It’s laughable and pathetic, like watching the old Saturday Night Live skit “We are two wild and craaazy guys!” I can’t believe these two clowns are in their mid-40s. I think he may be using her, though, to get publicity. He was a paparazzo himself. He knows “romancing” (fucking) the most notorious woman in Italy would give him tons of attention and it’s working. She got taken by the likes of Rain and Rose, so she is extremely stupid at evaluating other people’s intentions. Fabrizio might be trying to get the “truth” about Anthony out of her..wouldn’t that be great if turned around and sold her out? I would love to see that!

  30. Ida says:

    Yeah Catsworking –
    Wanna get hold of Esquire. It seems AB’s friends – the real ones – are starting to talk a little bit:

    And then there’s this (BEWARE of some of the content of the article, it might make you gag)…

    I haven’t seen the tweet from AA’s mother myself but apparently she’s posted that AA is bipolar. To be honest, I hope that’s not meant as a defense of her daughter’s behaviour because being depressed or bipolar doesn’t explain or excuse awful/narcissistic/sociopathic behaviour.

  31. feijicha says:

    Rachel, I like the way you think. Where did you find the Boulud comment? Eric’s comments just seem to highlight that but for that moment in France when that c*** pushed just the right button in him, he’d still be here.

  32. feijicha says:

    “As the years went on, he learned to carry himself with more confidence, which made him look more polished” — Karen, I think we are saying the same thing ; )

  33. Rachel says:

    Try not to get when you see the photos of those two morally bankrupt fame whores AA and FC: He fucks her on a table and they both go straight to the Italian talk shows to reveal this to the world? How gross. Fabrizio went to jail for blackmailing celebs and this is exactly where this is going with Asia…and she is lapping up all this attention (literally). If Anthony was a real tough New Yorker he would have known AA was screwing him over (literally) but his bullshit detector failed miserably here. His family and friends need to speak up NOW. Tell the world how she abused his trust and used him for his money and fame. Which is what happened.

  34. Rachel says:

    Catsworking/Karen, sorry I am having trouble with the link. If you want to fix it, the article is in the November 15th Daily Mail. Just Google “Anthony Bourdain Daily mail” and it will come up. By the way, the comments section is hilarious! I love what some people said about how pathetic these two are.

  35. catsworking says:

    Rachel, Ida, thanks for the links. I see the karma train coming through the tunnel and AA’s tied to the tracks. For her next boyfriend she picks a paparazzo newly out of jail for blackmailing celebrities. Anyone see shit for brains?

    Only this time, she has no sympathetic, wealthy sugar daddy to make it all go away when she betrays Fabrizio and he discloses his treasure trove of ugly middle-aged porn he’s been collecting on her. He might even accuse her of fucking his 16-year-old son, Carlos.

    Maybe now that she’s clearly moved on, and going back to boo-hooing about how much she misses Bourdain would clearly be received as bold-faced lying, Tony’s friends are feeling freer to talk about it.

  36. catsworking says:

    Rachel, I don’t know what’s up with the link either. It works fine from Ida’s post, and it works fine intermittently from yours. I even pasted it in again to yours from the Daily Mail website and then got an error message when I clicked it from here.

  37. Ida says:

    And here’s link for Eric Ripert interview in Esquire. It’s a nice interview. He seems like a pretty good guy, that Eric:

  38. Rachel says:

    Ida, AA’s mom Daria Nicolidi posted that she is bipolar? She definitely exhibits classic signs of mania…sexual acting out, anger issues, delusions of grandeur, reckless spending and drugs/drinking. That actually makes some sense. She obviously doesn’t take meds. I don’t want to blame her revolting behavior only on mental illness though. She is just vile through and through. The lowest trashiest woman I have ever heard of. She makes the Kardashians look classy.

  39. catsworking says:

    Ida, thanks for the link. I’ve always liked Eric. He’s totally a class act. The polar opposite of AA.

    Rachel, after reading your comment, I searched the memory bank for any woman I can remember being as trashy and vile as AA, and the closest I could come was Ivanka Trump.

  40. Morganlf says:

    When oh when is that vile pig going away? Is this a way to act if your grieving? Why isn’t she being hounded into hiding?

    She made a douche bag out of Tony and in his befuddled old man state she fleeced him, cucked him, and dragged him into covering a pedohile scandal, one in which she groomed her victim from the age of 7.

    Tony was, I thought, so much smarter than that. Guess not.

  41. Rachel says:

    Today her mother insulted her on Twitter again. She said “My daughter is a Brunhilde who can’t find the right man.” As in the Norse legend. Brunhilde was either 1. Deceived by her lover or 2.A destroyer of men. On that last part we can all agree. Also today in her IG stories Ass-idiot was wearing a T-shirt that said “Bipolar”! What an idiot. Her lowlife guy Fabrizio just got a 24-hour reality show and a talk show in Italy! Not bad for a jailbird. Guess he can dump her skanky butt now. He got what he wanted. Attention from the Italian media and a new job!

  42. takouris says:

    I hate to say this but I couldn’t stand Tony’s tweets or his attitude while he was with AA. It was like he morphed into someone else, someone we totally didn’t know or recognize from previous years. And yes why isn’t AA going away? She clearly doesn’t care about mourning him anymore, because if she did she’d try to keep all this quiet.
    I still can’t believe he fell for this wretched, vile, skank.

  43. “in his befuddled old man state she fleeced him, cucked him, and dragged him into covering a pedophile scandal”

    If she was his daughter or caregiver, this may be considered elder abuse. Seriously.

  44. Lynn says:

    Fabrizio (can I call you Fab?), you’re in for a hard fall, my man. Have you been in a cave for the last 6 months? Did you seriously refer to that skank as ‘God’? Is the fetid hole really that glorious that it’s worth your self esteem, dignity and feelings? Perhaps you dismiss Tony as a weak man, so unlike yourself, you assume that you can “handle” Ash-vaj, but I’m sure Tony felt the same way…at first. Enjoy.

    That tat on her inner thigh looks like she’s had a period accident. Made love for an hour?? Probably because she’s so Lincoln Tunnel sized he got lost in there. Perhaps like South Park’s Lemmiwinks gerbil, he needed a miner’s hat with a headlamp on it to find his way out.

    I love how even her own mother slags her off. It makes total sense that she’s bipolar. A lot of her behavior fits the pattern, not that it’s an excuse for treating others like shit.

    As for the LES episode, Karen I agree the quick cuts and grind-house style ‘damaged’ film gimmick was very Tony, but got old for me because it was over used. However, I did like the ending where the film got faster and faster until it was an unrecognizable blur of swirling colors. You couldn’t really make anything out in it. What a fitting end – I agree I think that’s a perfect symbol for what may have been AB’s mindset in that hotel room. His mind was swirling so hard with the hurt and depression he couldn’t see through it. His daughter, his crew, future career sucesses – everything else got blurred away.

    I too am not a fan of the music from that CBGB 70s scene, other than Blondie. But I did know them all. Karen, how is it possible you don’t know them?? Not even Debbie? I was born in 1970. I loved Heart of Glass the second I heard it and love it to this day. Still I felt like I was watching a documentary about the music, and AB was kind of lost in the episode for me.

    The non-musicians I’d never heard of. Lydia Lunch? OMFG she was hilariously grotesque! Ashface, meet your future self (except that Lydia is funny). When she said about Tony, while he was right there, “If his dick was bigger we’d be fucking but instead we’re gonna have a cigarette…” HA. I was hoping they’d show the LES more like it is today. I like seeing how the city has changed. I think it would have been nice to see them superimpose what’s there now with what was there in the 70s. I can assure everyone the rats are definitely not gone. I had an ‘encounter’ with one this summer at one establishment and I won’t ever eat down there again LOL.

  45. catsworking says:

    Morgan, I have to say I think you nailed it. AA made a total fool of Tony, and he, unfortunately, was a willing victim.

  46. catsworking says:

    Rachel, and now AA apparently has a place where she can regularly drop in as a “reality guest.” I am so beyond disgusted with this development, words fail me.

    Fabrizio will not be able to dump AA if he attains some new measure of fame. She will sink her claws deep, deep into him and not let go until he’s got nothing left — or he ends up back in jail or dead.

  47. catsworking says:

    takouris, I’m with you. While he was with AA, I pretty much tuned him out and delayed watching Parts Unknown until a whole season had aired because I didn’t like what I was seeing him become. His writing of the ghoulish comic books didn’t help.

    The new tats (huge blue mum on his right shoulder that was supposed to be for AA), the selfies of him and the skank half-naked on beaches. It was like mid-life crisis on steroids.

    But like he always said, he was a bus that made many stops and his fans wouldn’t be on the ride for all of them, so I thought I could sit out this phase and hop back on when he settled down and published something meaningful. Turns out, he ran out of stops.

  48. catsworking says:

    Clem, good point. And this is only the part that we DO know. We have no idea what she said or texted to him. Threats to his career? Dissing of his age and manhood? Belittling his talents? The possibilities are endless. Clearly, there was some serious emotional and mental abuse going on to make him think that suicide was a good option.

  49. catsworking says:

    Lynn, you have me rolling on the floor. After an hour of banging the fetid hole on a table, probably strewn with cigarette butts, Fabrizio may be experiencing itching and burning as I type this.

    Lydia Lunch was my favorite character in the LES episode. She was priceless.

    I thought Debbie Harry was an actress. When I say I tuned out the music of my youth, I’m not kidding. I was immersed in Broadway, with Cole Porter and the Gershwins on the side. I heard pop songs on the radio, but paid no attention to who wrote them or was singing them. I hear them now as “oldies” and may recognize the tunes, but know nothing about them.

    When Michael Jackson died and they were playing his music all over the place, I’d hear it and go, “That was HIM?”

    I have at least 150 CDs, and I promise you will not find one that would not have made Bourdain throw up. I don’t even have the Beatles.

    I’ve had one rat encounter in my life. I was sitting in a restaurant parking lot when I saw a creature under another car and thought, “Oh, no, somebody’s guinea pig got loose!” And then it turned around and I saw the tail and realized what I was seeing. Still ate at the restaurant, though.

  50. Rachel says:

    Lydia Lunch would kick AA’s sorry butt was if they were ever in the same room together. AA is a fake punk. Lydia is the real thing. I’m not worried about Fabrizio. The guy is a male AA. He is so in love with himself he isn’t going to ever destroy himself over a woman, especially a dried up sleaze like AA. He knows exactly what he is doing. Heard AA saying she “wants to fall in love again” on some talk show. Gets out of jail. Arranges to meet her, screws her brains out on a table and tells her what she likes to hear (she’s G-d!). Straight to the Italian talk shows to spill all, and voila! Reality show and talk show. He has been with many many gorgeous women. He won’t stay with her. They are too much alike.

  51. catsworking says:

    Rachel, so right. Lydia Lunch would chew up AA and spit her out, then pick her teeth with AA’s femur. I really like Lydia.

    You are getting my hopes up. To see Fabrizio leave AA behind as roadkill as he forges a new career on TV would be so fitting. First, blackballed by CNN, then rejected by an Italian D-lister like herself. That she snagged a sex-starved jailbird for a table-fuck (too much trouble going to the bedroom, or even the couch) says it all. She’s aging, skinny, smoke-infused, and a perpetual drunk. What’s not to like?

    Next stop, lot lizard via the Holland Tunnel.

  52. feijicha says:

    reading the interview with him and the one with her, they only had TWO DATES, the second one being the hour-long table fuck…. and this is her “new relationship” that she’s bragging about in the media? TWO fucking dates! And really just hookups… and yet she’s blabbing about it. That’s not a ‘relationship’ that’s a couple of rolls in the hay. What a scummy piece of shit.

  53. Morganlf says:

    I forgive your music dysfunction…

    Blondie was epic..her guitar player Frank Infante was a friend of a friend in my Hoboken days and I remember a jam session that was epic.
    Debbie Harry,I do remember when she was a waitress/performer at Max’s Kansas City she’d walk around in a bra and skirt and was truly gorgeous.

    As previously mentioned my boyfriend had a bar a few doors down from CBGBs so I met a bunch of acts most of the Ramones come to mind….especially Dee Dee…

    It wasn’t my music exactly..I’m more Led Zep and Metallica, and always Motown. Marvin Gaye “Inner City Blues” is my jam, Tony and I agreed on that one.

    I discovered Sinatra at 24, He remains my favorite of all time. Cole Porter, Benny Goodman? Oh yes. Vivaldi, Bach, Mozart… All day

  54. Tina says:

    Karen: That’s an interesting metaphor that you mentioned about Tony being like a bus. I never heard that one before.
    Back to one point I forgot to make when I wrote that post:
    While he was bashing HW and picking fights with people on Twitter on succubus’ behalf, I always wondered if there was going to be something bad that would come out about him….that there was some harassment he was guilty of that was festering and that would break sometime soon. I know we shouldn’t speculate on his death any more, it’s bringing back too many bad memories, but I have a sick feeling that he told succubus something about his past and she was going to out him and that’s why he did what he did.
    I feel so guilty writing that and I feel so bad even saying that I couldn’t stand watching him or reading his tweets when he was with her.

  55. Lynn says:

    …and her kids eat on that table.

    “Gets out of jail. Arranges to meet her, screws her brains out on a table and tells her what she likes to hear (she’s G-d!). Straight to the Italian talk shows to spill all, and voila! Reality show and talk show. ”

    So apparently you basically just need a pulse to become famous in Italy.

    Tina – I think his paying off a guy who claims Ashie assaulted him when he was underage was enough leverage against AB, enough for him to be embarrassed about, enough for him to be publicly eviscerated as a hypocrite if it had come out – potentially ruining his career. I’m sure he was aware of the gaping hole between his behind the scenes quieting of an alleged victim and public championing of #metoo.

    Actually the day he died I found out from a friend. She texted me ‘oh no, not Bourdain too!” And I texted her back, “Shit. Who is accusing him?”

    Sorry didn’t mean to call to mind gaping holes again. How is that woman not one giant herpes sore?

  56. catsworking says:

    Morgan, Hoboken? Well, of course Sinatra. He’s exactly my speed. Could listen to him 24/7.

    I also have a thing for the original Three Tenors (Pavarotti, Domingo, and Carreras).

    feijicha, thanks for my laugh of the day. It’s true that they’re just fuck buddies right now, although Fabrizio is mistaking her for God. The fact that they both went public the moment they hooked up is proof that probably more so than genuine attraction, they were both calculating how they could use the other to get their faces in the news.

  57. catsworking says:

    Tina, when he was going hammer and tongs against the perps outed by #MeToo, I definitely wondered if he didn’t have the skeletons of some waitresses or cooks in his closet who might have been tempted to go public, even if it had been consensual. It wouldn’t have surprised me a bit, and I’m sure he would have freely admitted it, taken the blame, and abjectly asked for their forgiveness and saved himself in the long run. He’d have become the poster boy for how to respond to such accusations.

    BUT he was hooked up with an unscrupulous perp who could have/would have gummed up everything for him if his devotion to her ever wavered.

    Tony was the one who called himself a bus. It was his metaphor.

  58. catsworking says:

    Lynn, when you mentioned the reality and talk shows for Fabrizio, I thought the bar for entertainment in Italy must be even deeper in the sewer than it is in the U.S.

    They’re a couple of mid-size fish in a very small pond. Covered with algae and scum.

    I was actually surprised that nothing #MeToo-related didn’t come out about Bourdain before he died, from random past restaurant hookups. But I don’t believe he was ever predatory. He was basically a shy person, so back in the day I can’t imagine him doing anything nonconsensual.

    Seems inconceivable that AA doesn’t offer each new conquest a nice tasting menu of chronic STDs.

  59. bassgirl23 says:

    Lynn thank you for that laugh, I have been looking at all of AA’s instagram stories and posts out of morbid curiosity as to how low she’ll go….I think we’ve just found that out! She is truly disgusting. Her new “boyfriend” will last all of a week, I’m betting. How does she keep getting gigs (DJ’ing, singing etc.)? Is there really no one else in Europe the media can focus on?

    Eric’s Esquire article was great – I think that the more time that goes by, the more we’ll hear from Tony’s friends. AA seems to have very conveniently forgotten all about him. It’s not even been 6 months and she’s already had how many “relationships”? Not exactly the grieving widow she made herself out to be.

    In the Rome episode of PU when AA first “met” Tony, one thing that really struck me was when he asked about her family – some question about whether they all had big family holiday dinners together – and she looked almost horrified at the thought (and quickly squashed that notion). In interviews he seemed to be always longing for that family stability, and seemed to love the romantic idea of those kinds of big gatherings, where everyone gets together….why on earth wasn’t that a huge red flag for him at that point? He must have been so lonely to overlook that and get sucked in like that. Really sad.

    Watching the last episode of PU was heartbreaking particularly when the credits rolled and I saw who sang on the outro…..what a brave kid, to be able to hold it together to sing that. Not many adults I know could do that.

  60. I was just banned from Twitter for saying Argento is a skank but Nazis? No issue.

  61. catsworking says:

    Condolences, Clem. I got kicked off Twitter for calling Sarah Huckabee Sanders something nasty. I don’t remember what it was.

    But praise for Nazis and brutal dictators, yeah. Even calling a U.S. senator “Schitt” like a fucking three-year-old. No problem.

  62. catsworking says:

    bassgirl23, AA has been trolling for dick almost since the day Bourdain died. What makes his senseless passing so galling is how besotted he was with that disgusting woman and the power she seemed to have over him.

    Did you see the episode of No Reservations he did with Ottavia’s whole family? Her mother and aunts cooked the feast. I can’t remember where it was, maybe Sardinia, where Ottavia’s father is from? Tony loved being part of that.

    When they split up, the loss of that family connection for him was the first thing I thought of. He slammed the door in his own face to take up with a skank — another Italian, no less. It seemed a slap in the face to Ottavia’s family, who must have been stunned and disappointed.

  63. Dingobeast says:

    Catsworking, pretty sure Asshat was trolling for dick the entire time she and Tony were together. It is a hobby, like knitting but with more STDs. I think Tony had no idea someone could be as icky as AA is, and the horror of discovering that devastated him. He did still get together with his family and Ottavia and that side, but he definitely gave most of it up when he took up with that critter. One of the first thing an abuser does is isolate you from any other support system.

  64. Rachel says:

    I just saw that Ottavia posted a photo of Ariane playing the guitar on her IG stories!! Ariane’s face is partially blocked but you can tell she favors Anthony in her build. She seems to be quite tall for a 10-11 year old. She looks like a teenager already. I’m looking forward to some nice posts from Anthony’s REAL family and friends.. like others mentioned I think that more friends will be coming forward to discuss Anthony. My guess is that Helen Cho, who was one of Anthony’s closest Zero Point Zero friends and is also close friends with Ottavia she trained at the same martial arts academy) knows ALL. I check her IG and so far she has been very discreet. I always thought she might be behind the original JusticeforTony Instagram that only lasted a short time but had a lot of insider information. Only speculation. It had to be SOMEONE on the crew. No one else could know about the screaming phone calls between AA and Anthony etc unless they were on the crew. We will see what is revealed over time..

  65. MicheleKim says:

    Wow, I haven’t visited for a while! Need to return and catch up with the AB news.

    FYI, if anyone is on Instagram, the Tony Friends IG account is now called: abourdainarmy. Not sure who maintains it, the Ariane photo was posted today. So sweet!

  66. catsworking says:

    Dingobeast, you are killing me. “Like knitting but with more STDs.” Priceless!

    I think Tony and Ottavia still spent holidays together with Ariane as a family, but I can’t imagine him spending any time with Ottavia’s parents and relatives while he was cavorting around the world with Trashy Ashy. The Italians have a word for women like her — my grandmother used to say it. And my mother still says it.

    The only picture where I’ve ever seen Ariane’s full face was when she was a newborn and he posed for a black and white shot holding her naked in his hand like a meatloaf. Oh, and once as a toddler on No Reservations, she turned around for a second to face the camera. Other than that, they’ve always obscured her face. He said they wanted her to make her own decision about how much of a public person she wanted to be when the time was right.

    There are also a lot of photos of her in his cookbook, Appetites. No full face there, either.

  67. Dingobeast says:

    His time was sliced pretty thin. I cannot imagine that kind of life and I love to travel, we were just in Nice and demolished a seafood tower in Tony’s honor. I am glad they are protecting Ariane’s privacy, she is just a kid and doesn’t need people recognizing her everywhere.

    Catsworking, I need to know some Italian insults for trashy broads.

  68. catsworking says:

    Dingobeast, if Morgan sees these comments, I have no doubt she will weigh in with her repertoire. I don’t even know how to spell the one I know. It begins with a P or a B. Not sure which.

  69. Dingobeast says:

    I hope so, Cats working!

  70. feijicha says:

    Karen, it starts with a “p”; the same word is very similar in Spanish.

  71. Pollyprissypants34 says:

    In my neighborhood, AA would be a puttana. When pronounced, it does sometimes sound like it starts with a B. Vincent Gardenia uses it to describe Cher’s behavior in Moonstruck.

  72. catsworking says:

    feijicha and Polly, thanks for the clarification! I’ve always wondered about that word. I remember Amy Farrah Fowler once saying it on Big Bang Theory (don’t recall in what context — someone may have called her one) and I think her pronunciation was a distinct “P.”

  73. leeduigon says:

    There is even a dish Pasta Puttanesca which translates to “whore
    style” olives, capers, etc. We all seem to agree on Ms. Argento’s classification.

  74. catsworking says:

    Pat, I’ve heard of Puttanesca (Charlotte served it for some social gathering — wedding or baby shower? — on Sex and the City), but never connected the dots. Knowing that now, I’m sure I missed the joke on S&TC.

  75. Margeaux says:

    Karen, in my neighborhood this word is “puta.” Yes it means whore, which we know she is layered over with ass***e of course.
    She takes the word to a new level.

    I’ll be missing Tony this Thanksgiving for his tips about cooking.
    If I remember wasn’t there an episode about this? I could be thinking of a NR episode.

    I hope his daughter, family & close friends have a nice Thanksgiving, & it’s undoubtedly going to be very hard for them.

    I wish all of you a Happy Thanksgiving.

  76. feijicha says:

    I just caught the earlier comment about singing on the outro of the last show…. was it his daughter?? What did she sing? How sad……

  77. Adele Prass says:

    Hope everyone had a Happy Thanksgiving. Karen, the French word for whore is “putain.” I’m told it also used as an expletive, the way we say say, “Shit,” when we’re displeased.

  78. catsworking says:

    Belated Happy Thanksgiving to all! (Actually, my family isn’t having it until Saturday, so today is a cooking day for me — cranberry relish and corn souffle.)

    Adele, so now we know how to describe AA in three languages. I’ve studied French (off and on) for many decades and I never heard this word.

    feijicha, the song is something like, “You Can’t Put Your Arms Around a Memory.” With my unfailing lack of interest in modern music, I’ve already just about forgotten the title, don’t remember who sang it, and couldn’t hum a bar if my life depended on it. You can hear Ariane singing along if you listen closely.

    I was thinking of the Bourdains this Thanksgiving, the first one without Tony over-thinking it and roasting two turkeys — one for show and one to carve. I’d bet Ottavia made sure they had plenty of company to keep things from turning dark.

  79. Ida says:

    Quote from interview with ‘Joe Beef’ chefs. It would have been cool if they’d elaborated more, but they probably didn’t want to for sake of privacy, but I wonder what they’re referring to exactly:

    ‘McMillan: The whole day is consumed by staying 60 miles an hour — that in itself is everything.
    Morin: And I think with Bourdain, either the life that was full of those 140-miles-an-hour moments, and times alone at zero —
    McMillan: — fire-roasted moose and the finest wines and then an eight-hour car drive in the rain back to a … hotel in St. John’s, Newfoundland. Down there on his phone, things going wrong, the darkest six-hour car ride you could possibly imagine. We were there with him in November. We knew there was a darkness. But you have to understand, I was in very advanced alcoholism and drug addiction and Fred was not happy either.’

  80. catsworking says:

    Ida, if I were to hazard a guess, wasn’t October 2017 when AA’s interview with The New Yorker about Weinstein came out (I’m not near my notes, so I’m going from memory), and then in November Jimmy Bennett accused her of raping him? Sounds to me like Bourdain in Newfoundland was deep into texting AA about the Bennett situation. He saw the relationship taking a very bad turn and he was trying to salvage it. In the end, he threw gobs of money at it, but it wasn’t enough for the insatiable, narcissistic succubus who couldn’t be satisfied until she consumed him into oblivion.

    And now, five months later, she gloats about having sex on her table with a paparazzi, the same type of creature who captured her with Hugo Clement and doomed her relationship with Bourdain.

    It’s all so gruesomely grotesque, Bourdain couldn’t even have imagined such a disgusting plot for one of his twisted Hungry Ghosts comics.

  81. Margeaux says:


    This link you’ve posted, is it a very recent story, 2018 then it lists 1123. Anyway, I couldn’t find it. But this info is interesting. Leaves me wondering either whether some of Bourdain’s conversations were heard, enough. Too bad these guys were so drunk probably couldn’t really tune in, but they did get the vibe something wasn’t right in Tony’s personal life.

    I’m going to continue looking for this article, since it’s in my neck of the woods.

  82. Margeaux says:


    Mmmmmmm cranberry relish and corn souffle. That sounds really good. Have fun.

    So I also wonder what ever became of Jimmy Bennett. He felt like a flake, if you ask me.

    There has been a very covert child sexual abuse scandal going on in my city. An employee working for a program for at risk youth was reported over a 20 yr. time span. This is a scandal in and of itself, but get this….the organization this pervert was working for is sponsored by our police dept. It’s been very alarming, sad & I belong to a neighborhood group; we become advocates about this issue. Victims have been coming forward. In this case it’s mostly men, now adults.

    Well, the very day the accused was to appear in court about two weeks ago now, he was found dead – suicide!

    Do we see a pattern here?

    I know the circumstances are direly different with respect to Tony, since he was the one being affected by a scandal as such w/the lot lizard & Bennett. I have been wondering the very same thing you’ve posted, Karen and lot lizard’s insatiability, stopping at absolutely nothing.

  83. Margeaux says:


    I forgot to mention…..that picture you took of Tony at the book signing, and one of the two of you is great. I’m enjoying everyone’s posts throughout the years. Surprised I hadn’t found all of you sooner! Better late than never, right?

  84. I just noticed that AA posted this in October. Tony’s apartment.

    View this post on Instagram

    One year ago, featuring @brad___phillips

    A post shared by asiaargento (@asiaargento) on

    She has NO shame. Let him and his family have some peace, ffs.

  85. catsworking says:

    Margeaux, glad you found us, too!

    That’s a terrible situation with the child molester. I HATE it when they take the easy way out and kill themselves. Ditto for mass shooters. Then we never get answers.

    The missing piece with Bourdain is that we only have a sketchy picture of what happened leading up to his death. We’ve heard that he and AA were fighting over the Hugo photos. We don’t know what passed between them. Did he try to end it with her, and she threatened to out him as the one who paid to silence Jimmy Bennett to keep him close? We don’t know.

    What we DO know is that family and friends are maintaining this ironclad silence. THEY know something and for some reason they want it to remain a secret. Litigation, embarrassment, a stain on Bourdain’s reputation? We don’t know.

    The cranberry relish was perfect, but I overbaked the corn souffle and it came out a little dry upon reheating right before dinner, although the taste was fine. Last year it was perfect.

  86. catsworking says:

    Clem, the IG post seems pretty gratuitous. What was her point? He had contempt for love? She just can’t help herself. It’s almost like she’s trying to goad someone in Tony’s camp to hit back.

  87. Margeaux says:

    I’m really curious. I looked up lot lizard’s IG, and of course it shows tons of pictures. I don’t know how to look on this social media site.
    Does it just consist only of pictures? Anyway, there are tons & tons of herself. I’m assuming this one is of Tony in the picture. There is one there of her & Tony and it has a rather purple-pink color to it.

  88. Rachel says:

    The Italian press is reporting that the “love story” between Ass-ia and Fabrizio was fake. They had a contract and she was paid 100,000 euros (about $135,000 in U.S. dollars) for this elaborate publicity stunt (they probably really had sex anyway, does anyone doubt it?)
    The whole meeting, declarations of love, meeting his kid Carlos..all fake. He is denying it but basically saying he is finished with AA and she posted on her last IG that her life is like a David Lynch film (director of many creepy and bizarre films). Why didnt she just say her life is like a Dario Argento horror movie? Anyway now she has money to pay what she owes to Jimmy Bennett…his lawyer should go after her for that money now.

  89. L says:

    Hello everyone, (sorry if I’m double posting, the first time I submitted this didn’t go through) I don’t know how to introduce myself on these sort of things. I just finally worked up the courage to post and say what a big fan of Karen I am. Your musings are always a pleasure to read, you are a seriously talented writer—I’m jealous! This blog and its often accompanied hilarious comments have brought me a lot of comfort and joy since June.

    Unfortunantly, I only found out about this place after Anthony’s death, which is funny since I consider myself a long time fan, and this seems to be the hub for long time fans.

    In 5th grade I was obsessed with No Reservations and Bizzare Foods with Andrew Zimmern, but somehow when I went to college, both men I deeply admired, fell off my radar. I was heartbroken over hearing about his death, truly a childhood hero. I was even more dumbfounded to find out that he had new show on CNN for the past couple years, and I didn’t even know about it until late last year—-I’m even more pissed to find out he did a PU episode in my city, Houston in 2016 and I didn’t know!

    I loved it, but noticed how it strayed away from the goofiness and occasional cheesiness of N.R. It truly evolved into something cinematic—- something Tony always wished to achieve on No Reservations. I’m happy he got to make the show that he wanted, but the last couple of seasons were, I don’t know, depressing?
    Like many of you have been trying to puzzle pieces revolving around his death together and it’s still just complete shock. Like I had no idea until late last year that he and Ottavia separated and he was dating Ashtray Argento. Fun fact: I started dabbling in jiu jitsu (I’m terrible) because of her after I watched the Rio episode of NR.

    So many plausible theories on here though have eased my mind. I too believe within time, more of Tony’s close friends and family will reveal the truth—-hopefully. I started following ZPZ crew members after I started watching PU, and someone on here mentioned Helen Cho being a probable figure in delivering his truth and I agree. They seemed to have a father and daughter bond, and I know she was his right hand gal, so if anyone knows anything, it’s her. Plus she’s very close to Ottavia and seems to act like an older sister figure to their daughter. I also noticed how all of the ZPZ crew unfollowed AA after his death except Helen. She only unfollowed her recently after she went public with this sleazy papparazzi guy. Perhaps she was still trying to hold on to the last remnants of Tony, and realized it was time to finally let go of that toxic part of his life. Whatever it is, I don’t think the truth will be pretty.

  90. catsworking says:

    Margeaux, there are also “stories,” or short video clips on IG. Someone here explained how to access those, but I’ve forgotten and couldn’t get to the one someone mentioned that Ottavia recently posted of Ariane playing the guitar.

    If you hover over the photos, you can also see number of likes and open any comments. AA has sometimes turned off comments so they’re inaccessible, but the last time I looked, she had them on. Most were in Italian.

  91. catsworking says:

    OMG Rachel. WHO would have paid AA that kind of money for something so stupid? Publicity for what?

    Agree that the sex probably happened (she’s probably charging tolls for a tour of the tunnel just for quick cash), and I do believe Fabrizio fell hard and fast, because what he said was too, too Bourdain in HIS first days with Trashy Ashy.

    Got to wonder what she did to piss off Fabrizio. I hope he got some nice stills or video of her writhing in ecstacy on her table so he can restart his celebrity blackmail business.

    AA’s life IS a Dario Argento horror movie that won’t quit.

  92. Rachel says:

    Apparently it was Fabrizio that paid her…the guy is notorious in Italy. She is notorious in Italy..they both got on the covers of the Italian gossip mags and several gossipy TV shows. They both got a lot out of the deal. The “love affair” was supposed to go on a lot longer, but another gossip “journalist” exposed the whole thing, so they are both backing off now. We know she would do anything for money and they are both attention whores, so it was a good match while it lasted. Now Fab has a couple of reality shows and she got some money and attention…You know that the Italian media is nuts, right? I mean, the “bunga bunga” party former Italian prime minister Berlusconi used to have all his bimbo plastic-surgery enhanced girlfriends on television as anchors in tight dresses. He used to have underage girls at sex parties. Heck, years ago an Italian porn star, “Ciccolini” was elected to parliament…need I say more? Ass-ia and Fab’s antics are boring in comparison.

  93. catsworking says:

    Oh, wow. She IS a whore in the conventional sense. And a pretty stupid one. So she gets some quick cash she probably needs desperately, and he gets TV shows he’ll be earning from indefinitely.

    I wonder how long it will take for her to realize she got the short end of the stick and do an interview claiming Fabrizio “ruined her life.”

    Talk about giving a girl a fish. She got her face back in the rags, but now she just looks even trashier and more unemployable.

    Bourdain dying was certainly Fabrizio’s lucky break.

    I do remember Berlusconi’s bunga-bunga parties. Trump would be having them in the White House if not for Melania’s presence.

  94. catsworking says:

    Welcome, L! I found your double post in the spam folder for some reason, but I pulled one back into the light because you’ve got some interesting intel on Helen Cho I wasn’t aware of. That she has been following AA all this time indicates to me that Helen knows something and has been watching for AA to reveal or confirm it. But maybe she gave up hope when it appeared AA had moved on with Fabrizio — which we now find out through Rachel was all a big lie.

    I’m still hashing over the silence and how it seems to be allowing Tony’s suicide to morph into something he never would have intended. I’m working through it on a post now, and should get it out here soon.

  95. L Villeneuve says:

    Remember, coke is very, very expensive!!

  96. Rachel says:

    Regarding Instagram..since there seems to be some confusion on here about it. You have to have an Instagram account of your own to see anyone’s Instagram stories (which are like short videos that can be decorated with little stickers and words to personalize them). You can tell when someone posts an IG story because their IG photo will have a red round circle around it. When you click on the IG photo with the red circle, you can see their “story.” However, you can still look at someone’s photos on IG even if you don’t have your own account, but you will not be able to view their IG “stories”. Now, regarding Helen Cho…I remember she had a few photos on her IG of AA and Bourdain during the Hong Kong shoot. She deleted those photos at some point. She may have continued to “follow” AA to see what she posted at any monitor her IG posts. However, she could still see the AA posts and IG stories even if she wasn’t “following” AA. But maybe she kept it open in the hopes that AA might reveal something only to her, Helen. This is just a guess.

  97. Ida says:

    Yeah, I also noticed that Helen Cho and also Christopher Doyle followed AA for months, but they both seem to have unfollowed her now – perhaps because they liked her at first but now there’s too much shit associated with her? Or maybe as you suggest Karen, because they wanted to see if she said something. I think AB’s assistant still follows AA on Twitter. Whether they’re friends or if she is just trying to keep up with AA is saying, who knows? Ronan Farrow still follow her on Instagram (and maybe Twitter too?). Not sure they’re friends – perhaps he’s also just keeping tabs on her?I do think AA checks Twitter posts and maybe the posts here also, because she sometimes seems to make posts that reference/mock things that people have written about her. Someone on Twitter pointed out that there’s just been a women’s march (this weekend I think which both AA and RM attended last year. What happened to AA’s ‘activism’? If she was a real activist, she wouldn’t have stopped that would she? I guess it was never real in the first place.

  98. Dingobeast says:

    Ok, that is hilarious. Asia is an actual hooker, as suspected. I wondered what was going on with her new look and cleaned up social media. That kind of attention probably wasn’t exactly what she was aiming for, and I am sure she was hoping to get more out of it. It will make new johns a bit more suspicious that they are gonna end up in tabloids when they just want to buy some cheap old lot lizard ass.

  99. catsworking says:

    Dingobeast, thank you for giving me my big laugh of the day. True that AA may have sabotaged her own future clientele by grabbing at the low-hanging fruit for a quick 100K euros. The word on the street now is: screw that bitch tomorrow, see yourself tomorrow in the tabloids.

    Her behavior since Bourdain’s death makes his association with her sorry, trailer-trash ass seem even more aberrant. Italian cinema royalty? I think not.

  100. catsworking says:

    Ida, AA has blocked Cats Working from her Twitter account, so she was aware of me at some point. However, I don’t recall ever sending her a tweet. I think I may have posted one comment on her IG account right after Tony died.

    I have never detected her presence here, but that’s not to say she hasn’t stopped by to lurk. She may dismiss us as a bunch of old lady fans.

    I do have an IG account that I don’t use, but I’ll watch for the red circle on others to see if I can catch the stories. I once got into Tony’s stories and saw a bunch of weird little video clips. The whole concept seems like a useless time suck for people to share too much, but whatever.

    I think anyone from Tony’s camp who still follows AA is just keeping tabs on her to see if she tries to exploit him further. Can’t imagine any actual friendships there.

    AA has relinquished all rights to be a #MeToo advocate since she just accepted money from a man to claim he screwed her on her own table so she could get her face in the media again. She’s probably afraid to show up at any march for fear that they would rip her to pieces for her hypocrisy.

  101. Rachel says:

    Oh I forgot to have to log into your own Instagram account in order to look at someone else’s IG stories. You cannot look at the stories if you are not logged in. After Anthony’s death, AA posted some really awful, nasty “stories” that may have been a reaction to Rain Dove’s lies about Anthony and a prostitute. I never posted any comments on Ass-ia’s social media because I didn’t want to get blocked.

  102. L says:

    I remember AA followed Helen Cho as well, but she must’ve unfollowed her when she found out Helen unfollowed her. She also followed Todd Liebler, Tony’s longtime camera man, until he unfollowed her. She still follows Christopher Doyle though, but I’m pretty sure mostly everyone, if not everyone from his camp, has cut ties with her. If anyone’s following her on any social media platform, it’s definitely to keep tabs.

    As for Tony even being attracted to AA in the first place, there’s this movie called 500 Days of Summer where the lead protagonist has a deep infactuation for a woman he starts dating named Summer. His sister sets him straight after he goes into a depression when they breakup and says, “Just because some girl likes the same bizarro crap you do, doesn’t make her your soul mate.” and I think that perfectly sums up Tony and AA’s relationship. He totally mistook infactuation for love. It didn’t help that she made herself seem more importaint that she really was. I remember someone saying her stupid “no shame fist” logo was going to be the next ‘Guerrillero Heroico‘ (the infamous Che Guevara poster) and she retweeted it as if would be. I laughed so hard, like calm down Asia, you’re definitely not the next Che Guevara. My god she’s such a narcissistic witch.

  103. catsworking says:

    L, mentioning that movie just reminded me of a book by Somerset Maugham called Of Human Bondage. Guy becomes besotted with a slut who uses him and throws him over in the end. Same story.

    AA probably Christopher Doyle because she sees potential for him to hire her for something. He had no ties to Tony beyond filming the Hong Kong episode, so she’s just trying to maintain a “professional” connection. But if Doyle has even half a brain, he’ll steer clear.

  104. takouris says:

    Of Human Bondage was on TCM Sunday afternoon and that is the first thing I thought of: that Philip and Mildred were like Tony and Succubus. It’s the same relationship…all consuming and destructive. Mildred and Succubus were/are just users of men with money.
    I finally watched the end of the lower Eastside episode and I did not like the way it ended either, with the fast moving pictures and what not. It was awfully depressing.

  105. catsworking says:

    takouris, I’ve said before that whenever Bourdain’s TV career started winding down, I hoped he’d become the next Somerset Maugham, using his vast travel experiences to write fiction and essays. Sadly, he ended up being the victim in one of Maugham’s most tawdry plots.

    (Well, next to the short story Rain, where the minister tries to reform the hooker Sadie Thompson and ends up having sex with her, which just reinforces her low opinion of men and what hypocrites they are.)

  106. L says:

    Hmm, I’ve never heard of that book before, Karen. I will definitely add it to my reading list! I have seen ‘Of Human Bondage’ (haven’t read the novel though), and that is another eerie accurate comparison. The only reason I drew parallels from ‘500 Days of Summer’ is that in an interview once, Tony made it clear that he had a deep appreciation that she knew the same obscure music, films, and books that he did. I believed he even called her a “real sponge for culture” once *major eye roll*. Not to say Ottavia is a complete philistine, but she seemed to be preoccupied with anything and everything MMA and BJJ related. So when he met the wicked witch, I guess her faux-ass intellect, and love of the obscurity really enchanted him. Hence, the quote pulled from the movie.

  107. catsworking says:

    L, I haven’t seen that movie, but your parallel seems spot-on.

    Ottavia is no slouch, intellectually. Her English is certainly light years better than Ashy’s. I think Tony once remarked on how he appreciated that she could quote Noam Chomsky. I’m sure she didn’t lose all that once she got into BJJ, but her focus definitely shifted.

    Of Human Bondage is Maugham’s most well-known novel by far (although his writing has generally lapsed into obscurity). I will warn you. It’s a huge book.

    I have a quote hanging on my bulletin board that Bourdain said at the Cayman Cookout in 2014 that thrilled me, the big Maugham fan. He said…

    “I’m looking for a lot of great food-related books to come my way, but I’m really waiting for a novelist or a memoirist or essayist. I’m interested in reprinting works that are out of print that I’d love to see back in print. I’d love to reprint W. Somerset Maugham’s Ashenden, which is one of the great spy novels of all time. There are a lot of things on my list that I would love people to read or convince people to read.”

    However, I believe the Ashenden book is actually a series of short stories. Maugham got involved in some intrigue during the war, and the character Ashenden was based on his exploits.

  108. Margeaux says:


    Thanks so much for explaining the way that IG works.
    Yes, I must admit that I’m way out of the loop in terms of social media. But I do belong to several blog sites. I was able to view lot lizard’s photos at least. This whole thing about posting one’s own photos sure has encouraged the narcissists to come out in droves.

  109. Margeaux says:

    Possibly the people who once were very close to Tony wanted to keep up with lot lizards posts for clues. One can only imagine any nuances and tidbits of what went on during the shoots they were part of, and having this piece of shit in their midst. But hey…..time marches on. Absent the social media she relies on, cheap scandal and her obvious propensity for advertising every disgusting choice she makes, could bring it home to Tony’s colleagues what a psycho b**ch he hooked up with.

  110. catsworking says:

    Margeaux, if all AA’s current efforts to exploit herself don’t bear quick, lucrative fruit, she will probably go back to flogging Bourdain’s memory and how he left her in the lurch to see if she can wring anything else out of that connection.

  111. L says:

    Okay, I thought I was incredibly ignorant about Maugham’s work, but it turns out I’m far more familiar with the movie adaptations of his novels (Of Human Bondage with Bette Davis, 1984’s The Razor’s Edge with Bill Murray, The Seventh Sin/2006’s The Painted Veil, etc) I’m sure they don’t compare to the actual novels, which means I need to add them to my growing reading list…

    I’ve recently come across old articles written by Ottavia for Vice, they’re hilarious and informative. I hope I didn’t come off disregarding her as a classless gym junkie. I’m sure she has excellent taste in a variety of things—-except for music according to Tony lol. I mean otherwise he wouldn’t have married her. I know she’s incredibly intelligent, and has a real gift for writing. It’s just sad that her intense BJJ passion was probably driving factor behind their separation, it was like he was tired of being married to that life and wanted to share broader interests with someone else. *cue the succubus*
    On a side note, I remember Tony jokingly mentioned in an episode in NR that he married an Italian in hopes of cooking and eating a amazing Italian food, but with her dedicated regimen, he couldn’t.

  112. catsworking says:

    L, many of Maugham’s books, short stories, and plays have been made into movies and continue to be. The one that pops into my head right now is Being Julia, starring Annette Bening and Jeremy Irons, based on Maugham’s novel Theatre. Good blog post about it here:

    Maugham was hugely famous as a playwright. I remember at one point he had four plays running at once in London. I haven’t thought about him much in a long while, so all the titles aren’t on the tip of my tongue.

    Ottavia’s articles were really well-written and funny, and I always wondered if she had Bourdain edit them for her.

  113. muller says:

    Quartet by Maugham is a great black&white brit film from the ’40s. Available youtube.
    muller, London

  114. catsworking says:

    Welcome, muller, and thank you for that tip about YouTube. There were actually two films of his short stories, Quartet and Trio, and I think Maugham himself may have done introductions on both. I know I’ve seen one of them but can’t remember which. Actually, I have it on VHS tape, which tells you how long ago it was.

  115. takouris says:

    Besides “Of Human Bondage” my favorite Maugham book is “Up at the Villa.” It takes place in Italy at the start of WW2.
    I didn’t know all that about Ottavia writing … but I remember a quote from Tony in the New Yorker piece from a year or so ago. He said of Ottavia, “I married Sofia Loren and she turned into Jean-Claude Van Damme.” (Or some variation thereof.)
    I’m going to have to re-read Tony’s books. I just need more of a Tony fix. And watching later episodes of Parts Unknown is just making me massively depressed. He was so easygoing on No Reservations….I miss that Tony. Deeply.
    And I will always say…Karen, thank you for giving us a place to mourn, vent and share memories of this lovely man.

  116. catsworking says:

    takouris, Up at the Villa was made into a movie in 2000. When you start delving into it, Maugham stories are really everywhere, and they keep getting remade.

    The old 1940 Bette Davis movie, The Letter, was based on a Maugham story.

    I must admit I’m still processing Bourdain’s death, as you can see by today’s post, and it isn’t helped by new things I keep reading that go off on tangents and not having him around to declare bullshit.

  117. muller says:

    Yes Trio and Quartet both introduced by Maughan. Very entertaining!

  118. gladys neudorf says:

    Thank you so much for this blog. After TB’s death I searched everywhere to get some shred of information to explain it. Your words helped. I, too, think that his friends know more than they have told us thus far, and maybe they will one day tell their stories. I keep hoping that Eric was with him at the end, and he wasn’t all alone.

  119. catsworking says:

    gladys, thanks for your kind words. As far as we know, Tony was alone in his hotel room when he decided to kill himself. Eric was sitting downstairs in the restaurant, waiting for him. What we don’t know is if Tony was on his phone, texting or talking to AA, until the end. She has said he went silent on her sometime Thursday night (which was when he skipped dinner and left Eric waiting for him the first time — when it happened again at breakfast, that’s when Eric became worried and asked for someone to check on Tony), so it sounds to me like Tony was talking to AA shortly before he died.

    When Eric went into Tony’s room Friday morning, he was already dead.

  120. Margeaux says:

    I saw the GQ ariticle, and it was very good. Many of the people really close to Tony opined, and it was great to hear what they had to say. Could this possibly be the beginning of people starting to say at least something and even if it doesn’t answer directly the “why,” but maybe enough time has passed. This Saturday will exactly mark 6 months.

    May your spirit soar very high our love, Tony! We sure miss your beautiful energy and voice. Rest in ultimate peace.

  121. muller says:

    he looks pretty worn down in that pic

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: