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Friday, December 16, 2005

'Reality' Check
Trump's Apprentice to Work in A.C.
"You're hired," Donald Trump told Randal Pinkett, 34, who lives near New Brunswick, N.J., on last night's Apprentice finale. The businessman with multiple M.I.T. degrees edged out Rebecca Jarvis, 23, a Chicago financial journalist. Mostly the show was the same-old-drill, hardly-a-thrill affair. But several moments are worth mentioning.

Pinkett proved it's possible to lead by being nice. For many workers, that's a shocker.

But he wasn't nice at the end. After making his pick, Trump asked Pinkett if Jarvis, also highly lauded, should be hired, too. Nope, only one Apprentice, it's not "Apprenti," Pinkett said. Pretty selfish is one columnist's take. Maybe race played a role: Pinkett's the first black Apprentice, and perhaps he thought sharing the title would have tainted his accomplishment. You know some people would have pointed out: Trump never made a white person share a title.

Even "outstanding" leaders blunder. "I can't believe you didn't check the weather!" said Trump's right-hand iceberg Carolyn to Pinkett, who had to improvise when his charity-baseball-game plan was threatened by rain. Jarvis' fund-raiser for autism didn't raise a penny -- till an embarrassed Yahoo, whose rep had asked Jarvis not to impose on its guests, stepped forward with $100,000 during last night's show.

Trump announced he'll expand all his Atlantic City casinos, which seemed surprising since they've been entangled in bankruptcy. Spending money to make money? Sure sounds different from the newspaper business. Pinkett picked this project, one Trump said was near and dear to his heart, over sky-high condos in North Jersey.


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