As the buyouts loom

File this under tiny town: I met a guy at an opening the other night who mentioned he had been out to dinner with a paper eminence who naturally was recognized and inundated with the usual “a little something”s from the chef. But paper policy allegedly prohibits freebies, so he had to pay unhappily for food etc. he didn’t order. Of course he’s one of the last journalists still standing who could pay, so it was not as bad as if some poor freelancer had to hew to those standards or get Jamaica-thrown overboard. But I wonder when push really will come to shove and the comps get comped with no repercussions. Expense accounts have nearly gone the way of the multiple martini lunch. Big editors are even biking to work. At what point will publishing just say fuck it, let’s admit the business is rife with practitioners of the profession Alan Grayson had the audacity to mention?