In his first on-air meeting with Bryant Gumbel since the release of Gumbel's memo criticizing his "Today" show colleagues, weatherman Willard Scott Monday kissed Gumbel on the cheek, then got off a zinger.
Scott, plugging Purina pet foods, told Gumbel that Purina "makes all kinds of food for animals. They make goat food, they make horse food.""They make it for the complete horse, so you wouldn't be interested," Scott added.
Gumbel looked slightly chagrined, and Scott added, laughing, "I had to do something."
Scott was the recipient of the strongest criticism from Gumbel in the memo to the NBC show's executive producer. Gumbel complained about Scott's "bad taste" and the amount of time he spends sending birthday greetings to elderly viewers.
The memo was written in the fall and was leaked two weeks ago, apparently after being taken from Gumbel's computer file. Scott was on vacation last week, though he and Gumbel talked by telephone, with Scott making Gumbel take an on-air pledge against computer memo-writing.