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Why is this News?

Updated on June 17, 2015

The stray black cat in our neighborhood left a mouse on my front porch a few days ago.

Sammy's gift was big news at our house, but I'm wondering why that information has not reached the rest of the world? Why isn't it going viral?

I guess the fact that Sammy is not a celebrity or sports star is preventing everyone from knowing how special we felt to receive such a present.

Makes me wonder why a guy wearing short pants in Florida who wasn't allowed in an establishment because he didn't meet the dress code is newsworthy.

Apparently In today's world of instant gratification and viral videos, this what passes the smell test for news. Although there is photographic evidence of this situation, I'm thinking that is can not be the first time this has occurred at the Blue Martini in Tampa.

However, it's the first time I've heard that the National Football League's No. 1 pick in the 2015 draft was in the news for wearing shorts.

According to a few web sites, Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston was recently denied entrance to the Blue Martini, which is located in a shopping mall, for not meeting the dress code.

Who cares. While I'm guilty of clicking on the link this time because of my amazement that people report this stuff as news, I typically do not move my mouse to read a story like this. After reading it, I would have been better off taking care of the gift mouse on my front porch.

Is someone following Winston around watching every move the guy makes or was the photo now floating around the internet taken by an employee/patron of the establishment? Either case, the Winston is a public figure and really can't do much about that.

Although I would probably be happy with the employee at the entrance who didn't allow Winston in my place of business for not meeting the dress code, if the photo was snapped by another employee, that person should be fired. If I were an owner of a restaurant an employee took a photo in this situation, I would be concerned about my customer's privacy if it showed up online.

Just the Latest Star

This time last year, we were all living life with Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel and his troubles. Winston is just the latest star in the spotlight.

Granted, Winston has had some issues that have been highly publicized, but were we waiting for him to punch the guy at the entrance of the Blue Martini for telling him he had to wear pants?

One of the stories even quoted someone from the Blue Martini. I suppose Winston wasn't available for comment.

There are a few things I want to know from him, but those answers were not available in the story.

Why was he wearing shorts? Florida isn't that hot in June is it?

Did he have a reservation?

Did he not tip the guy at the entrance?

Did he just decide to go while he in the mall for another reason and did not know that he needed to wear long pants?

Where are are those answers? I suppose the answers to those questions may not be interesting enough to make this a "news" story, so they were not included.

I do know those of us who have spent over 20 years in the journalism profession can't stop this type of stuff from happening. Unfortunately, there is something that needs to stop.

Glancing though the comment section related to the story, there are a lot of derogatory comments directed at Winston and Florida State University. They range from calling him an idiot to classless thug, while to referring to where he played football as Felony State.

I'm not a big fan of comment sections. To be fair, there were a few voices of reason, but most of the posts were very negative. I know people who attended Florida State. They are not thugs or criminals. I do not know Winston and will likely never have an opportunity to meet him, so I will reserve judgement.

The Tampa Tribune even picked up the report and added that Winston was spotted ordering a chicken sandwich later during the weekend. The byline on the report was staff. Having worked at a newspaper, I'd feel confident in saying that no one would want their name on that story. It's just lazy reporting.

It's disappointing that we now live in a world where reporting like this and the comments following the story have become normal and we are numb to it.

To balance this story out, I did find another recent item during an internet search about Winston on Yahoo Sports released by the Associated Press. A different story about the same event was published in the Tampa Times with a quote from him and a photo just a few days before the quarterback was caught wearing shorts.

Winston and several of his new teammates had their heads shaved to raise money for pediatric cancer research. According to those publications, over $30,000 was donated during The Cut For A Cure Charity Challenge.

Not too sure, but maybe that's why Winston was wearing a hat in the photo taken outside the Blue Martini.


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