October 19, 2009
If there was ever a time to “Save Artie Lange“, that time would be now. We have now entered Week 2 of Artie’s absence.
Howard’s reaction to Lange resonates with me. He tends, at least on radio, to excuse, overlook, avoid and dismiss the most egregious lapses by his co-workers. I can relate. The same muscles that enable his creativity atrophy when it comes to being a disciplinarian. He can’t and won’t be both.
I wrote before how Howard has taught me not to avoid confrontation, but that doesn’t seem to apply to the people closest to him on the show. Either that or he realizes that their disciplinary lapses are actually good for the show. Speculating about Artie or upbraiding Sal is good radio, and perhaps Howard would rather have ongoing drama than the finality of discipline and—inevitably—dismissal. Because, face it, in any other workplace Artie and Sal and likely Richard would have been let go by now.
Maybe Howard recognizes that their talent is not simple to replace. Maybe he knows that it’s all good radio. Maybe has has a weakness for those who work most closely with him. For someone who can be so unrelentingly hard on himself, he sure can be soft on others.