Ed Driscoll

Life Imitates Lileks

On the Minneapolis Star-Tribune’s home page, James Lileks has been doing a routine where he plays Jimmy Lileks, Ace Reporter, a sort of postmodern parody of ’50s-style investigative reporter beamed into the 21st century. In the latest edition, he discovers that Apple has a new product that all the kids seem to rave over called the iPhone! It allows you to make calls without having a phone plugged into the wall and everything!

But Lileks is doing a parody, and one that’s aimed squarely at online readers who are technologically savvy and know the news before the paper does. The only excuse the yutz in the clip below has for his shtick is that he’s playing to his TV station’s base: 80-something year old shut-ins who don’t know what an iPhone is either. Watch how huffy he gets when someone in line calls his bluff and correctly asks him, is this really journalism you’re doing, buddy? And the ultimate irony? With 158,295 views and counting on YouTube, he’s probably gotten more viewers than his station’s TV news show gets.