As I traveled the East Coast this week I read from afar about the threat Las Vegas magician Criss Angel issued to Review-Journal celebrity writer Norm Clarke. Now, let me first say that when it comes to first hand knowledge, I don't know jack about Angel. For all I know his erratic behavior may just be schtick.
The story goes like this:
Days before Cirque du Soleil announced details of the $100 million magic show being built around Angel at Luxor, his public behavior became news.
Upset that his girlfriend, Miss Nevada USA Veronica Grabowski, failed to make the final 15 last Friday at Planet Hollywood Resort, after his improper request to a pageant judge to "give my girl high marks," Angel made a spectacle of himself and took things into his own hands. He approached the stage and attempted to have a contestant trade places with Grabowski during a commercial break to improve his girlfriend's camera exposure. Later, when an NBC camera moved in to get a closeup of Angel in his seat, he flipped 'em the bird.
That should have been cause enough for his handlers to get him out of the public eye before he could get into more trouble.
But he wasn't through. He confronted my colleague Norm minutes after the pageant ended and threatened him with the so-clever "Don't ever write another word about me, or you'll need an eyepatch over your other eye."
Like I said, I don't know much about Criss Angel. His "look at me, I'm an ass" public persona may only be a harmless act. But just for the record, he ought to understand that the Review-Journal does not take threats against its reporters lightly. So, as publisher of the newspaper let me be clear, Criss: Any future act by you or one of your hangers-on that even bears the illusion of a threat will not be tolerated.