What in the world is Matt Lauer?

We already know “where” Matt Lauer is — still sitting at the anchor desk on the Today show, alongside annoyingly frenetic and chirpy Savannah Guthrie, who used to be a hard-hitting interviewer and legal commentator. (Oh, how I wish she’d switch to decaf. I don’t need that much energy in the morning.) But “what” is Matt Lauer. That’s the real question, following a few stories I discovered this morning.

What I miss is Ann Curry’s soothing, calming way of easing us into the morning without assaulting our sensibilities like a cheerleader through a kaleidoscope.

But… Ann is gone (and Today’s ratings reflect that). And it’s not really Guthrie’s fault that she replaced her. As for Guthrie’s co-host… he apparently had a hand in it. No, he didn’t actively seek to have Curry fired. But… if you stand by and watch someone drown, and do nothing to help, you aren’t exactly innocent. Particularly when you have the power to yank someone to safely with one hand. He did, and he didn’t. I don’t think I can forgive Lauer for that.

I feel betrayed. I perceived Lauer as an easygoing, likable guy, calm and pleasant and banal enough to be my early morning friend. But it seems I was wrong.  Read the following stories. As they say on the news programs, we’ll chat on the other side.

Ann’s last days on “Today” were “torture”:
http://www.thewrap.com/tv/column-post/ann-currys-last-days-today-form-professional-torture-86646

Matt didn’t want Ann to remain on the show:
http://omg.yahoo.com/news/matt-lauer-ann-curry-today-show-fallout-personal-174500264-us-weekly.html

Matt stood by and just watched Ann drown:
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/inside-today-show-drama-12-430596

After considering these stories, I think this is the last nail in the coffin for Today when it comes to which network I’ll turn to for morning news. Beginning tomorrow, I’m switching to Good Morning America. Should it turn out to be unsatisfactory – hey, here’s an idea: I just won’t watch the morning news at all anymore.

As for our initial question, having endured more ridiculous “Where in the World is Matt Lauer?” specials than I can stand (I think the only thing lamer is the Today show weddings, and both segments are the reason DVRs were invented – to fast-forward through them), I think the real question is “What in the World is Matt Lauer?” Based on his treatment of Ann Curry, who was like a sweet salve that soothed the sting of Meredith Vieira’s departure, I must conclude that he is a world class dick. And he’s also the reason I’ll no longer be watching “Today” in the morning.

Oh, and there’s one more reason – yes, I really DO like Ann Curry that much. In the spirit of solidarity, I’m done with Today today. Goodbye, Today.  Your stuff is in a box on the doorstep. Leave your key in the mailbox.

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