Meredith Viera’s list of crazy on-air antics must be at least as long and sordid as Kathie Lee Gifford’s, if not longer. (I’ll never forget the time she dissed a famous perfume expert and told him she didn’t “get” why anyone would buy a fine fragrance anyway, adding that she exclusively wears Jean (she pronounced it as “Gene”) Nate.) Anyhoo, this latest shenanigan is a low, even for her: During an interview in which consumer expert Janice Lieberman described deals people can get from police auction sites, Viera joked, “I can see all the NBC bean counters, all of my wardrobe is going to be from PropertyRoom.com, starting with [pointing to Lieberman] that ugly yellow dress.” ZING! After the audience gasped in horror, she “saved” the excruciating moment by screaming, “No, it looks cute on you. It looks cute on her!” This reminds me so much of the ex-coworker who used to say, “Ohmigosh, that jumpsuit is cray-zay! Only YOU could wear something like that.” Huh!? Or my personal favorite, “I could never wear my hair like that, but you are totally pulling it off.” You know what I could never do? Figure out how to respond to these compliments/insults. Do you thank the person? Turn it back on them? “Well, I couldn’t wear what you have on either.” It’s hard to know how to react because it’s also difficult to gauge whether they’re being genuine (and in that case, maybe they feel too insecure to take sartorial risks? Sad!), or simply making a semi-veiled catty comment. Viera’s lame attempt at righting what was definitely a cheap shot — and a shocking one caught on air, at that — was pretty cut and dry. But in real life, it’s not always as easy to tell. You know what I mean?
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