City Paper is not for tourists
Yeah, so the weekend featured some good stories, including the essay in WaPo’s Outlook section by Washington City Paper alumnus TaNehisi Coates on the role played by his father in his early years; Joby Warrick has a scoop on some pretty lethal stuff obtained by smugglers; all kinds of stuff on Obama, everywhere you look; and then there’s this insufferable NBA Finals.
But really: This is Washington. And a Washington without Tim Russert is a tough thing to contemplate. Howard Kurtz on Saturday had a great piece on the guy’s life and his contribution to political journalism and NBC. TV critic Tom Shales, too, had an appropriately overwritten piece to contribute. As for the broader reaction, it’s wall-to-wall tributes for this god of TV journalism. Tributes here, tributes there, tributes all over the place. The loss is a really tough thing to get your head around. Here was a guy at 58 who certainly showed no sign of slowing down. Loved the game as much as ever and was producing the same, high-caliber reporting and interviewing as ever. Sure, he knew he had issues with his heart, but he’d had a stress test in April and had done fine. It’s been reported that “cholesterol plaque” ruptured one of Russert’s arteries. Turns out that one of the drawbacks of stress tests is that they don’t detect this kind of plaque.