Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Grey Lady and Mr Gray

The line between covering the news and being news has always been a fine one. Reporters throughout the ages have gone to great lengths to flex their independence muscle and for their reward ended up on the other side of coverage. Think of Judith Miller, who went to jail rather than give up a source in the Valerie Plame fiasco. Or Jayson Blair, who wrote so eloquently and movingly, but perished under the harsh scrutiny of fact checking and was "outted" as a talented fiction writer masquarading as a daily print journalist. Ditto Stephen Glass. (Ironic that the Grey Lady has nurtured the careers of many a writer whom they ended up covering as news of their actions became daily fodder)

But this time, the Grey Lady must take a backseat to another Gray- Geoff Gray, of NY Magazine. Gray is the irreverant but brilliant contributor to many a politician's decline. He wrote an impressive cover story on Eliot Spitzer and what happens? The Steamroller wimpers out of office. He writes a fantastic piece about Joe Bruno and the result? Mr Gray has been requested to testify in Bruno's upcoming corruption trial. Somewhere, John Liu is burning up in sweat. (No pun intended)

It's always fascinating to see how a reporter reacts from the other side of the inquiry notepad. Will they wilt, fight, whine or treat the experience as a nonchalant exercise in necessity in an inquisitive career? Too soon to tell for Mr Gray but I will be sure to tune in.

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