The New York Times now requires freelancers to answer a questionnaire designed to suss out conflicts of interest and improprieties. So while Spencer Morgan was off in Iceland with hockey-playing, hard-drinking hedge funders and bankers, just for kicks The Transom took the Times‘ little quiz. Everyone else is doing it! The Transom hopes it is being graded pass/fail. And all answers are, of course, utterly true.
1. Please list your other current employers, whether full time or part time
Please end your sentences with a period then, okay? Okay! The Transom works only for the deadly peach weekly, the New York Observer! Hey hey! It does not currently have time for another job.
That is unfortunate, in that The Transom needs to have a wisdom tooth extracted and is considering having a bake sale for dental funds. Moonlighting as a toilet-mopping someone would be good. Maybe on 43rd Street! WE HEAR…. that a certain Pulitzer-Prize-winning op-ed columnist is a little splishy-splashy around the urinals! Hey! Is there a questionnaire for toilet-mopping there? Or for columnisting?
2. For what other employers have you worked in the last three years?
The Transom once worked for a bizarre and extremely money-making new media company, for an English fellow named Slick Nick. (The Transom once “worked” for Radar magazine, too—if by “work” one means “performing labor without pay.” Happens!) Was just thinking about that while filing an extension with the tax feds on Monday! Saved some money by not making money. You see?
3. What sort of volunteer work do you do regularly, if any, and for whom? (Please include any public relations, advocacy or advisory board involvement.)
Fuck no. Volunteering is for victims.
4. Do you do any work paid or unpaid in politics or government? Have you done any lobbying of governmental bodies?
The Transom once lobbied a governmental body while at a house party in D.C.—at Peter Bergen’s, hello, snacky terrorism expert! Came up empty though. Woulda gotten all Jessica Cutler on those deranged repressed D.C. himbos though, in full. Woulda gotten a book deal out of it too. Then would have paid for dental work with sexy book money! Woulda sold rights to S. Jessica Parker!
5. Do you have any financial investments or financial ties that may limit your ability to cover specific topics free of conflict, and if so, what are the topics?
The Transom has about $1100 in eBay stock which it purchased for about $1000, many years ago. Weak! Oh, and Citigroup! Free market! Go be free! Whoops! These wee stocks constitute The Transom’s emergency homelessness fund. It figures that it could live in New York City for one year—in Bushwick, to be specific—on the pittance it has hoarded away over the last dozen years, should it become unemployed. (If, say, it shakes down some billionaire.) And if it only eats free canapes at publicist parties for that year. Upside: would lose a few pounds in my whiffs for ya!
6. Although we don’t regulate the activities of spouses, partners or immediate family members of our contributors, do any of their professional or personal involvements or any of their financial investments or ties make certain topics inappropriate for you, and if so, what are the topics?
The Transom is very single—and is taking applications to rectify that. Also it should be said that The Transom’s momma prefers for it not to write about assholes.
6. Have you accepted any free trips, junkets or press trips in the last two years? Have you accepted any substantial free merchandise or discounts from people we might cover?
On Tuesday night, after the paper closed, The Transom won 55 bucks in a bar quiz, at some gay bar named Eastern Bloc in the East Village? Unfortunately there was a three-way tie for first place, so the winner of the prize was settled by a “walk-off.” There was a stripper pole involved, and none of the other contestants had the wherewithal to use it properly. Let’s just say The Transom is a little richer and just a little sorer between the thighs now.
The Transom was also offered a spot on the guest list to see the Fiery Furnaces this week, but had to cancel that particular high-flying junket to downtown because it can’t deal with rock and roll while its wisdom tooth is hurting.
Also, one time, seriously, this cancer charity called up and was all, “We’re sending people to ski for a weekend in Vail” or somewhere. And The Transom was all, “Cancer? Vail? Which one do we like less?” Needless to say no junketeering was done up. Absurd.
Oh also sometimes The Transom borrows cars, from either its friend Dale or its friend Jacob. Those cars are both Saabs! But one car lives in Brooklyn, the other in Manhattan. And they are always used for business purposes, such as getting from one place to another.
8. Has anything you’ve written later resulted in a published editor’s note or retraction for deliberate falsehood or plagiarism or become the subject of a lawsuit involving allegations of deliberate falsehood? (If yes, please include details about the publication and your role in the article or story. If a lawsuit, please describe the disposition of the case.)
The Transom has never gotten done down like that! Oh we’ve all picked up a few corrections over the years, and always so happy to make the record right. But The Transom will never take the stand with its Birkin bag! And it’s never been the subject of a lawsuit. “-Suit” would imply they had charges to press, not a lot of hot air streaming out of Marty Singer or whomsoever’s nether whatnots. Or that mean chick attorney from the Daily News. She was so mean that friends were sorta made.