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The Intellectual Derp Web

FA0756 Spotted Pig. Image shot 12/2015. Exact date unknown.

Hell exists on Earth? Yes. I won’t live in it:

Amazing how many high-profile public appearances the most silenced pundits in America make.

On the question of whether #MeToo has gone #TooFar, a case study! Meet Ken Friedman, owner of the good if rather insanely overhyped gastropub the Spotted Pig:

Natalie Saibel, a longtime server at the Spotted Pig, a West Village restaurant with celebrity investors, didn’t quit in 2015 after the owner, Ken Friedman, ran his hands over her buttocks and then her groin in a room crowded with customers, joking that he was searching her pockets for a forbidden cellphone.

Amy Dee Richardson, a bar manager there, didn’t quit in 2004, when she says Mr. Friedman bit her on the waist as he bent down to duck under the bar. Neither did Trish Nelson, a longtime server who said he grabbed her head and pulled it toward his crotch in front of Amy Poehler in 2007 as Ms. Nelson knelt to collect glasses from a low shelf.

But one night in 2012, Mr. Friedman pushed Ms. Nelson too far, she said: He invited her into his car to smoke marijuana and almost immediately lunged forward and pushed his tongue into her mouth.

“I was scared,” she recalled. “I couldn’t believe it. I had worked for him for six years.”

Ms. Nelson, 40, said she was pinned against the car door, but managed to open it and scramble out. She gave notice within days. “I was terrified to tell anyone why,” she said. “Ken bragged about blacklisting people all the time. And we saw it happen.”


Mr. Batali apologized on Tuesday. “Though I don’t remember these specific accounts, there is no question I have behaved terribly,” he wrote in an email to The Times. “There are no excuses. I take full responsibility and am deeply sorry for any pain, humiliation or discomfort I have caused.”

Among employees and industry insiders, the third-floor space has earned a nickname: “the rape room.”

Wow! Given the immense power of the #MeToo movement which has probably GONE TOO FAR, the consequences for this kind of behavior must be severe! Surely the man who ran a restaurant so famous for sexual assault and harassment its third floor was known in the industry as the “rape room” and boasted about blacklisting his victims would not just be able to carry on as if nothing happen…

The chef Gabrielle Hamilton says she is joining with Ken Friedman, who has been accused of sexual harassment by women who worked at his restaurants, to run the Spotted Pig, the West Village restaurant where much of the harassment is said to have taken place.

Ms. Hamilton, the chef and owner of Prune restaurant, in the East Village, said in an interview on Wednesday that she was pursuing a partnership in which she and her wife, Ashley Merriman, would become chefs and co-owners of the Spotted Pig with Mr. Friedman.

When, oh when, will the shreiking harpies of #MeToo stop punishing men without DUE PROCESS?!?!?!?!?!?

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