Only the little people need an arm and a leg

Panchito certainly did his part in paying down the Taj Sulzberger mortgage with his peculiar assault on the flea circus in the Sherry-Netherland. I’m sure the page views went multi-stories high; otherwise, what was the point in carpet-bombing a single cockroach? You got a mom-son act? Lump them together in a dismissive snarkfest. Got a serious chef opening his most ambitious restaurant? Kiss him off in a couple of snide grafs. But a “restaurant” no one gives a flying Wallenda about? Bring on the dedicated trash talk. It all reminds me of the most famous quote from Frieda of kiwi fame, one echoed by the foie gras producer currently under siege by animal rights terrorists: There is no such thing as bad publicity. One day when the theaters are all bright with lights again, some idiot tourists will be wandering the East Side and think: “Hey, there’s Cipriani; I’ve heard of that,” before bumbling right in. And some weird mission will have been accomplished.