It looks like a lot of folks hit the bottle after Monday’s surprise announcement that the Seattle Times and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer had settled their years-long dispute over their Joint Operating Agreement, assuring that Seattle remains a two-newspaper town for at least another decade.
No doubt Times publisher Frank Blethen and his out-maneuvered lawyers were crying in their beer after agreeing to pay a net $24 million to keep the competition in business, while David Brewster, founder of Crosscut (an online “newspaper” with little news and no paper) — who had pitched investors that his new venture would mine the huge hole left in the local media landscape by the P-I’s imminent collapse — sullenly (if not soberly) opined that “Hearst is the one that blinked.” Yeah. Right. Glug-glug-glug-glug.
P-I employees had no doubt who won this battle of the old media dinosaurs, immediately breaking into a daylong, celebratory bacchanal that culminated that night with a rented limo full of drunken reporters pulling up to Fairview Fanny… and unceremoniously emptying their bladders on the Times’ front lawn.
No, it doesn’t take much imagination to picture grizzled newspaper-war veterans sottedly writing their names in the grass, but the image of a certain female reporter squatting on Frank Blethen’s lawn — marking his territory as hers — that is sure to become an oft repeated tale of local journalism lore.