Not that I mean to demean a profession that is evolving so much faster than old media it looks like an iPhone running against a Trash-80. The holdouts still typing up spelling- and grammar-challenged releases and blasting them out like so many Nigerian come-ons leave themselves open to ridicule. The ones who are realizing you attract more flies with judiciously applied single-source honey are earning their money. Cold-calling chefs for magazine stories used to be the eleventeenth circle of hell; catch one at a bad moment and you were fucked for that assignment, and maybe longer. Now I freely confess I start with their facilitators, most often for the kinds of pieces that don’t need rich quotations and extended questioning, just a few details or quick thoughts or recipes. Fact-checkers want documentation more than ever, and a Q&A by email can out-verify a transcribed phone interview. For all my gaffes I know will be preserved for cyber-posterity, I suspect there will be many more by over-reaching kiddles. I can count on a couple of pairs of tongs how many chefs’ reps have totally blown me off in 25 years at this. But I actually got a “we’re too busy for national coverage” this week. Much as I hate Frank Sinatra, I could hear “flying high in December, shot down in May” echoing in my cranial sieve. All fad things come to an end.