July 23, 2013

On his radio show yesterday, buff Fox News talent Geraldo Rivera discussed his decision, in the wee hours of Sunday morning, to tweet a selfie of Geraldo Rivera showing perhaps the maximum amount of skin without triggering indecency censorship. There he stands, clicking his self-portrait, a white towel over the nether regions of his abdominal devil horns, looking buff. More, in other words, than even most fans of the very buff Rivera could hope for.

Fellow Fox Newser Eric Bolling pressed the buff Rivera on why he did it, and the durable American personality went deep on his shallowness:

Hubris is when you make, when you turn life, for boredom or ambition or you just can’t stand to have things organized and quiet and you kind of create a tumult in your life and I think that there I was, 2:30 in the morning on Sunday morning. You know, I do the show Saturday night, I did a great show on black-on-black crime and race relations and Trayvon Martin fallout and federal charges and a couple of things going on in these crimes in Boston, and the death of a witness in FBI custody. So I did that show and I get there and I get home and there’s no one to talk to, everyone’s asleep and you sit around and I had a drink, and then I — I had taken that picture Saturday morning. And I was looking at it, I was just going through and I said, “You know what, I gotta tweet this thing. I look pretty good for a 70-year-old, and I think because I’m so old, people will cut me some slack and they won’t take it too seriously.”

That’s a fine calculation for the buff Rivera. Why, after all, would people start taking him seriously all of the sudden?

What couldn’t be taken seriously was Bolling’s take on the situation; for some reason, he didn’t see buff Rivera’s self-photo as standard modern-media narcissism. “You’re Geraldo Rivera,” said Bolling. “I mean, to be Geraldo Rivera is, you’re kind of held to a higher standard.” Damn right! Let’s see a little more muscle mass on those bony shoulders!

Then Bolling raved about how intelligent the very buff Rivera is. “What you did is one of the dumbest things a smart guy could possibly do,” said Bolling, clearly ignoring this statement by the buff Rivera and this statement by the buff Rivera.

Erik Wemple writes the Erik Wemple blog, where he reports and opines on media organizations of all sorts.