I really didn't want to write about any of this Ina-gate scandal, because, at the beginning, I had no clue if it was true or not or HOW true any of it was. Apparently, the Make A Wish Foundation reached out to Ina (or her people) to ask if she would cook with a sick little boy, who loved to watch her show. The story that was making the rounds is that she coldly refused, because she was too busy promoting her book.
The story started appearing in many different places and loads of negative comments towards the Contessa followed. Then her people supposedly confirmed that she WAS too busy. I don’t for a second believe that Ina cruelly and heartlessly said NO! to this little boy.
Either the message was never actually delivered to Ina herself or, equally likely, she WAS completely, totally booked with prearranged (probably well in advance) events and there was no callous spurning of an ill child.
One of my great blogging buddies has been reaching out to Ina for a while to ask permission to post one of her recipes and he's never heard back. (I love him for refusing to post anyone else’s recipes without permission.) I’m thinking it may be just a case of not knowing the right channels to go through to get to Ina directly or to whoever needs to make that call.
This story has resulted in a surprising amount of bad publicity for my favorite Food Network star and I think it’s entirely unwarranted. No one can do everything that is asked and, for all we know, Ina already met her quota of cooking with sick kids this year. That sounds harsh, but, really, the thing I want to know is who leaked the story and why. It can’t be in the Make A Wish Foundation’s best interest to have people publicly pilloried when not all wishes can come true. It is a wonderful organization and I can’t believe it was them.
What I really don't like is people saying, Oh I never liked her anyway and this proves it. THIS PROVES NOTHING, except that we shouldn't take as fact any old thing that's printed.
The good news? Ina is now going to meet with the child, although I hate the idea (for both parties) that she was pushed into it. And the latest version of her pr debacle is that Ina only heard about all this brouhaha a few days ago, which is exactly what I suspected all along.