Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Is Jeremy Piven Lying About Sushi?

Posted By on Tue, Dec 23, 2008 at 1:55 PM


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Jeremy Piven, the short, formerly balding -- but charismatic -- star of HBO's Entourage series earned some unexpected food-related headlines recently. He left the new Broadway revival of David Mamet's black comedy, Speed-The-Plow due to, his doctor insists, mercury poisoning from eating too much sushi.

Naturally, the fishing industry lobby -- and lots of New York sushi restaurants -- went nuts, claiming Piven's illness was nothing but a fishy story concocted to let Piven break his contract and leave the run of the play. Even Mamet weighed in on Piven's supposed sickness: "I understand Jeremy is leaving show business," Mamet told Variety, "to pursue a career as a thermometer."

Back in January, the New York Times ran a fascinating feature story about testing sushi-grade tuna and finding high levels of mercury.

The other day, I saw a friend of mine pausing at the refrigerated seafood case at Cosentino's Brookside Market and picking up a plastic tray filled with neatly arranged pieces of prepared sushi. I walked up to him and said, "What do you think of Jeremy Piven getting mercury poisoning from eating sushi?"

He put the sushi container into his cart, turned to me and said, "Who in the hell is Jeremy Piven?" A thermometer? -- Charles Ferruzza


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