Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Heimlich My Balls, Cap-i-tan

Tom Colicchio: Hero.
By Ezra Klein

There’s a phenomenon in journalism called “burying the lede”: It’s when a writer buries the factoid or argument that makes his story interesting deep in the body of the piece. I do not mean to bury my lede. So here it is: Earlier tonight, Tom Colicchio saved Joan Nathan’s life.
You don't have to follow the link and read the story -- even though it's brief, I'll save you the trouble. Top Chef judge Tom Colicchio was at a fancy event, and gave some other chef the Heimlich maneuver.

The word "hero" has been thrown around a lot these past few days. For Martin Luther King Jr., and Sully the pilot, deservedly so. For Top Chef Tom, not so much. The Heimlich is a life-saving procedure, sure, but its degree of difficulty is zero.

Let's go easy on "hero", so its meaning is not diluted. Please save it to describe only those finest characters. Like Derek Jeter, perennial All-Star. Or Brad Pitt, who donates small portions of his worth to charity. Or America's firefighters, who put their lives on the line every day to cook America's chili, wash America's fire engines, and play America's pickup games in America's fire station driveways.

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