Sunday, May 17, 2009

Maureen Dowd Admits Stealing Copy, Taking Steroids, Crashing Twitter, Farting in Staff Meetings

New York Times op-ed columnist Maureen Dowd on Sunday admitted to plagiarism in a recent column, then surprised reporters by going on to confess to a litany of other offenses. Reached for comment Sunday night, Dowd admitted shooting steroids with Yankee slugger Alex Rodriguez, farting in Times editorial meetings when staffers presented ideas she didn't like.

"Yeah, I stuck A-Rod in the butt with a syringe," Dowd casually admitted, saying that Rogriguez injected her in the buttocks, too. "Being a famous media elite columnist is a very competitive field," she explained. "All the hot columnists are taking 'roids or human growth hormone to keep their edge."

What's more, the snarky writer, who famously expressed disdain for the Twitter microblogging service in an interview with its founders, admitted that she had personally caused Twitter to crash several times in recent weeks. "I am responsible for the frequent and untimely appearance of the fail whale," Dowd said, referring to the whale cartoon that appears during Twitter malfunctions.

There are unsubstantiated rumors that it was Dowd, not Twitter management, who caused major change in Twitter functionality that prevented users from seeing all @ replies.

The plagiarism charge resulted from a May 17th column in which she criticized former vice president Dick Cheney. Of course, she didn't use the word "plagiarize" when admitting the mistake; she said she "inadvertently" used without attribution a lengthy sentence from Talking Points Memo Joshua Marshall. The matter came to light Sunday afternoon, ironically enough, when the subject became a hot topic of conversation on Twitter.

In her much-lampooned column about Twitter, Dowd stated, "I would rather be tied up to stakes in the Kalahari Desert, have honey poured over me and red ants eat out my eyes than open a Twitter account."

Dowd has also been lampooned in a Twitter account called Fake Maureen Dowd (www.twitter.com/MaureenDowdTwit), which tweets various quotes from Dowd's columns as well as comments about Dowd made by other Twitter users.

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