Reporter 101 – Know When It’s OK To Be A Little Cheeky

Cheeky. Gestalt. Shtick. These are not words you usually hear in a news story. That is, unless we’re talking about the 2nd Avenue Deli. The venerable institution just won a lawsuit against Las Vegas-based “Heart Attack Grill” that lets them keep using the name “Instant Heart Attack” to describe a sandwich that’s basically a pillar of pastrami, book-ended by two fried potato latkes. Don’t even get me started on what’s in their now-on-the-menu “Triple Bypass.”

But that’s only part of the tale. Photographer Bill Muller and I show up to the deli late in the afternoon, after shooting our first story of the day (which I still have to write and get on the air by 6p. Spoiler alert: we get BOTH on the air for 6p. Plus tweets and web scripts!) We’re over-heated. We don’t have an interview set up. We walk in, meet manager Steve Cohen, and ask him if we can shoot some video of the sandwiches in question. He yells over the counter, “Gentleman, can I have an ‘instant heart attack’ and a ‘triple bypass’ and call my cardiologist!” I knew I was home.

Click here to meet the sultan of shtick, and find out when its ok to be cheeky.


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