So a guy ate another guy's face. That sounds pretty wacky, until you consider the fact that a guy ate another guy's face. To someone, somewhere, this isn't a remote story about some weirdos on the news—it's an immediate, close, howling pain. And to turn that pain into a cheap joke (and not even a particularly good joke) is irresponsible and inhumane.
(For more on the story of Ronald Poppo, the man whose face was almost completely chewed off, go here.)
Which brings us to Do or Dine, the hip Bed-Stuy restaurant, who Thursday evening tweeted a link to a photo (now deleted) on their Facebook showing an open-faced sandwich. They captioned, ”Too Soon? Scary news sucks. This doesn’t. Presenting the Miami Openface with Smoked ‘Bath Salts.’
(Bath salts being the highly dangerous drug that officials think caused Rudy Eugene to spiral into a psychotic, cannibalistic state.)
According to The New York Observer , a woman named Kristen Crusius responded to Do or Dine with a (now deleted) tweet, reading, "Wish I had a bridge to eat it under. <3"
(Eugene attacked Poppo underneath a bridge.)
Yes, maybe all a little too soon?
Gothamist talked to Do or Dine, who apparently were only going to serve the sandwich to regulars with similarly dark senses of humor. A rep from the restaurant said:
"The majority of people thought that it was the culinary equivalent of an article in The Onion. A few people were very displeased with us. As a restaurant, we are not in the business of displeasing anyone, so we have removed the post. We are indeed guilty of telling a bad and tasteless joke on the internet, and we are very sorry to all who we have offended... although we, unlike the New York Observer, are not dismissing the crime as a 'Zombie Attack' which we believe is more insincere and degrading."
Ronald Poppo is currently in critical condition at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami.
HOW YOU CAN HELP: The Jackson Memorial Foundation has set up a fund to assist Ronald Poppo in his recovery, which experts in facial reconstruction have said will include lengthy treatment, staged reconstruction, and psychological care. Donations can be made by check or online at jmf.org.