America's Next Top Model's striking writers are still picketing outside the show's offices, but one protesting scribe found that the acrimony persists even in the neutral zone represented by The Grove, our fair city's leading, artificially sweetened retail fantasyland. One might hope that host Tyra Banks and the people who toil to give her something to say between eruptions of "that's fierce" could coexist peacefully outside the boundaries of the conflict, but according to this report on the strikers' MySpace blog, all the world's a battlefield:
This is the craziest coincidence ever! I was at the Grove mall [yesterday]. I was done picketing for the day, and there was going to be a concert there sponsored by the CW that I wanted to check out. I ended up getting there way early, and went window shopping in Nordstrom.
After a few minutes of perusing the shoe department, I notice a group of people gathered around none other than Tyra Banks! And here I am in my handwritten "America's Next Top Model writer on strike" T-shirt! I was trying to move around to the front of where Tyra and her fans were, hoping she would see me. Within seconds, however, a guy dressed all in black with a headset on kicked me out of the store! I was just standing there! So, I left and as I did I heard him say into his mouthpiece "don't let that girl back in." Unbelievable!
I always had a positive opinion of Tyra, but that is being tested lately. First, remaining silent about whether she supports her writers or not. Now this. I just dont know.
While we're sure that Banks and her people weren't going to take a chance that a disgruntled writer might suddenly attempt to bludgeon the host with a reduced-price pump and inflict hundreds of dollars in hair-extension damage, they could've at least been a little more subtle in their methods. Having a salesgirl hover nearby the striker, click her tongue at the writer's homemade top, then rudely suggest that someone who might be about to lose her job probably can't afford anything in Nordstrom's might have been enough to get her to leave the store before excessive strong-arm tactics became necessary.
Bonus To Do link: The ANTM strikers are staging a fan appreciation event at the picket site tomorrow, complete with sympathetic models from the show and a "special celebrity guest appearance" by a hissing cockroach. We'll leave it up to you to supply the Janice Dickinson joke.