Illustration by Smell of SteveShortly after the Weekly opened in 1995, we made a crucial decision: we could attack the powerful as aggressively as necessary (and always within the bounds of the truth), criticize bands and theater companies mercilessly, and trash films without compunction. But restaurant owners? Gently, we decided, the way you'd handle a souffl. The reason was our review of a South County Italian restaurant in which we declared the pasta "glue-like," the service "Soviet-influenced," the atmosphere "late Victorian slum." Three weeks later, we got a call from a man identifying himself as the owner. "I was struggling to make it," he said. "I hope you're happy." We drove by the restaurant as jump-suited shopping center workers hung a sign over the restaurant's front door: "AVAILABLE." Someone else moved in, failed and left. And then the place burned down.
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