A Cornucopia Of Dirt To Dish (5/13/03)
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Here you go, folks-- in honor of Sweeps Month, a triptych of melodrama and scandal to round out the episode:

  • Remember the MSN iLoo? Well, faithful viewer Enrique Gomez tipped us off to an Associated Press article in which Microsoft claims that the whole project was just a hoax, despite the fact that the company's own PR people have repeatedly confirmed that it's real. The thing is, if it was a hoax, it still originated from Microsoft-- there's the official press release, after all, which at broadcast time had yet to be yanked from microsoft.com. Maybe faithful viewer Pat Chekal was right last week when he surmised that it was just an April Fools joke that didn't make it out the door until May; "only five weeks late-- that's way ahead of the usual Microsoft delivery lag." That's certainly possible, we suppose, but to us this whole "it was a hoax" thing smells like classic Microsoft revisionism, à la "those faked tapes we entered into evidence were actually just meant to be an 'illustration.'" After all, if you announced a product that spawned a solid week of ridicule from every sentient being on the planet, wouldn't you like to pretend it was all a joke?

  • Meanwhile, Microsoft's Fearless Leader is allegedly a master of the ol' Dine 'n' Dash. Faithful viewer David Poves notes that The Register claims that when Bill Gates was in a coffee shop in South Dakota last week, he actually stiffed the waitress the six bucks he owed for coffee. So, what-- just because he lives in Seattle, Bill figures that all coffee is gratis? We've been to Seattle, and while that particular fluid is pretty ubiquitous there (no joke-- we saw gas stations with the price of espresso right under the price of fuel), it doesn't exactly come out of the faucets for free. You'd think the world's richest man could afford a measly six dollars for coffee. Then again, maybe this is how he became the world's richest man in the first place...

  • One more from the Office of the Completely Unsubstantiated: trouble in paradise? Faithful viewer Rod Lopez notes a bit of gossip in the New York Post claiming that Steve's wife Laurene threw a hissy fit when she saw her hubby on the cover of Fortune with the lovely and talented Sheryl Crow. It seems that Steve kindasorta forgot to mention that he'd posed for a photo shoot with Crow, and Mrs. Jobs reportedly "considers the cover to be some sort of indication of Steve's less-than-devoted attitude toward their marriage." So why, exactly, is the missus so jealous? Well, don't forget, Steve once dated Joan Baez, so it's possible he's got a thing for singer-songwriters. Which raises a disturbing question: did Apple create the iTunes Music Store just so Steve could pick up chicks? Hey, if it makes him happy, it can't be that bad.

Oooh, we feel so dirty. But it's a good kind of dirty.


 
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The above scene was taken from the 5/13/03 episode:

May 13, 2003: Apple and Microsoft make with the trash talk-- just not much of it. Meanwhile, the "Disney Buys Apple" rumor gets turned on its head, Microsoft backpedals on the iLoo, Gates skips out on a $6 tab, and Mrs. Jobs is in a tizzy over Steve's cozy photo shoot with Sheryl Crow...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 3946: Smack Talk, Albeit Mild (5/13/03)   Everybody fasten your seatbelts and return your tray tables to their full and upright positions, 'cause Sweeps Month is finally coming in for a big AtAT landing! Yesterday's improbably high yield of tabloid-worthy dirt by and about various tech-oriented captains of industry is precisely the traditionally sordid ratings-boosting stuff we love to trot out four times a year ("what, only four times a year?")...

  • 3947: Elppa Syub Yensid! Trela! (5/13/03)   Attention, long-time fans of the ever-popular and completely baseless "Disney To Buy Apple" rumor! Prepare to be sucked into an alternate universe-- a topsy-turvy world where up is down, black is white, they wear hats on their feet, and hamburgers eat people...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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