If you thought Liz Smith was cranky and bitter about her profession before the New York Post dropped her column, just wait until you hear the 86-year-old gossip columnist now.
Former Daily News gossip Lloyd Grove asked Smith to open up about getting canned, and boy did she ever. Though Smith said the loss of her gossip column was "emasculating," she (still) thinks gossip as a trade is dead and pointless and stupid, because what's with the kids these days and their non-stars? Cheryl Crane and Johnny Stompanato — now those were some celebrities.
Since gossip is absurd, Smith these days is "doing philosophical journalism." We're not sure if she's talking about her WowOWow column on breast augmentation, or the one about how she sleeps naked, or maybe the one about "the best public bathroom in NYC." (Oh, Liz.)
Page Six gets it:
I read Page Six mystified every day, and everybody I talk to agrees with me. They don’t know who anybody is.... Well, it’s almost like they just dump a bunch of chicken feed out there and there’s no bones in it.
Here's a dig at the Post generally and (probably) at Aussie editor Col Allan specifically:
The New York Post, I hate to say this, is not a New York newspaper. It doesn’t love New York, it hasn’t adjusted to New York. It’s like aliens came down. It’s a fun newspaper at times. I always liked its saucy, vivid, way, but it has no New York heart. I figure they didn’t like me because I was alien to them.
Another swipe when asked about "sites like Perez Hilton and Gawker"
I don’t think they mean anything either... I wouldn’t give any credence to most of the stuff I read. I mean, there are no publishers, no editors, no lawyers vetting anything [Gawker has all three of these things; but then again the Daily Beast has at least two and that didn't stop this error —ed.]. This is the problem with the Internet where everybody has a voice and we’re stuck with it.
...which leads directly into this swipe at herself:
We’re going to have the Internet even when we don’t have things to eat. We’re going to still have it. I’m all for it, and I’m doing it myself on the Wowowow.com site, but it’s not important. It isn’t even semi-important.
The only person who escapes Smith's ire is fellow old-school gossip Cindy Adams, who keeps it real in the N-Y-Pizzle. She's not some Aussie interloper or reality-TV zombie whippersnapper!
If Smith hates the gossip business so much, why did she try to renew her Post contract, telling Rupert Murdoch she "hoped to die with my boots on my desk?" Why is she still writing a syndicated newspaper column and for Variety? Maybe Smith is afraid her life will be meaningless if she gives up her longtime gossip gigs. But she should give retirement another look. Not because of what the Post thinks about her work, but because of what she thinks about it.