LAS VEGAS – In true Las Vegas fashion, former Mayor Oscar Goodman is blaming it on the booze.
Sin City’s ubiquitous cheerleader made headlines when he threatened to go home Sunday night after waiting 20 minutes for an interview with Anthony Bourdain, host of CNN’s travel show “Parts Unknown.”
Bourdain was in town filming an episode. He responded via Twitter on Wednesday that he had not been late for the meeting with the former mayor at Oscar’s Beef Booze Broads Steakhouse at the Plaza.
Both men denied a column in the Las Vegas Review-Journal that ran with a headline suggesting Goodman was “broiling” over the incident. Columnist Norm Clarke told The Associated Press that Goodman thought Bourdain was late and was grousing about it in front of reporters and hotel officials.
On Wednesday, Goodman said if he gave the impression that he was mad, it was only because he was three martinis in. He said he should not be held accountable for his actions after 5 p.m., and that at least he wasn’t smoking crack, unlike a certain Toronto official.
“We were hugging each other like two long-lost soul brothers who hadn’t seen each other for 30 years,” said the mob lawyer-turned-city leader, who has a fondness for borscht belt jokes even before 5 o’clock. “I was hugging him because I was trying to stand up.”
The long-lost brothers have still not cleared up the timing issue. Goodman said he was about to go home and have his fourth martini after showing up at 8 p.m. and waiting 20 minutes, but decided to stay after Bourdain’s producers told him the host was delayed at Caesars Palace.
Bourdain said he doesn’t mind being portrayed as a jerk — although he used a rather more vulgar term — but he doesn’t like being called the kind of jerk who makes people wait. The Food Network alum said he arrived at the agreed-upon time, and Goodman was making an honest mistake.
Goodman was Las Vegas’ mayor from 1999 to 2011 and now works with tourism officials.