Last week, journalist Rick Polito revealed that he's been writing $10 jokes for George Takei's Facebook page, which has 4.1 million likes. Not surprisingly, this stunned fans of Mr. Sulu, many of whom had assumed the iconic actor did, in fact, write his own material.
Takei seemed to take the kerfuffle in stride, however.
"What is this hoo-ha about my FB posts? I have Brad, my husband, to help me and interns to assist," he wrote in an email to Wired.com. "What is important is the reliability of my posts being there to greet my fans with a smile or a giggle every morning."
While we're not sold on his argument here, we would like to commend him on his nonsexual use of the term hoo-ha. Maybe he really should be writing his own stuff!
The star later took to Facebook himself to further distance himself from the "scandal" (and we use that term loosely), posting on omg! Insider's wall, "The story isn't even true anyway. I don't know and have never met the person claiming to be a joke-writer."
For his part, Polito made a semblance of an effort to make this right with Takei. I wrote an apology to George and Brad and their guy said he'd pass it on," he told JimRomenesko.com. "I just said that I'd been looking for any mention of my book and that I hadn't meant to expose anything." Yes, this scribe was just trying to promote his novel "Dark Shift." Look ― it worked!
Backtracking even further, Polito continued, "I don't update his page. I've had no direct contact with George. I've sent him some memes, as have other comedian types, and I was happy for the exposure."
That's because the writer has been on the prowl for full-time employment for some time now — as $10 jokes do not a salary make. So, has this whole mess helped or hurt Polito's career?
He reports that he's added several hundred Facebook fans, and many of them have "reacted enthusiastically" to his book. In addition, he claims "job offers are flying into" his inbox.
So far, however, none of these leads has led to that coveted job with the salary and benefits that will allow Polito to live long and prosper.