Welcome to Talking Points, a daily roundup of digital miscellany
NOT A LOOKER
Leave it to Britain's Daily Mail to herald a new parenting taboo: the curse of the ugly baby. The paper cites a recent poll of 1,000 British parents that found 18 per cent were "privately disappointed with the looks of their new arrivals." The paper's Bianca London intoned: "It seems the vast majority suffer their disappointment in silence, choosing to put on the brave face society expects." Of the 18 per cent, more than half discussed their awful feelings with a spouse. Eight per cent also relayed their displeasure to others in their lives, probably to the chagrin of said ugly baby. "My daughter is 3 now and she is gorgeous," one father confessed, "but when she arrived she was the most disgusting little thing I'd ever seen."
Food critic Adam Platt surveys the "Great Noise Boom" of the restaurant industry in New York magazine this month, writing, "Ask any weary gastronaut about the single most disruptive restaurant trend over the past decade or so, and they'll give you a succinct, one-sentence answer. It's the noise, stupid." Platt traces the really annoying trend back to Mario Batali, who decided it would be fun to treat patrons to the blaring music chefs have enjoyed in their kitchens for years, a.k.a. a lot of Zeppelin. Platt argues that aside from deafening diners and staff, the decibels are also taking a toll on critics: "For those of us whose job it is to eat for a living, hearing loss is officially an occupational hazard, like choking on a chicken bone or suffering a cataclysmic heart attack." Turn it down a notch already.
"If you want something, I'll give you all the Tootsie Rolls I got."
A steady 96-year-old woman talked a robber out of it at her convenience store in Wisconsin this week. The knife-wielding man scrammed when he spotted Wolf's surveillance cameras, letting her Tootsies be.