'Barefoot Contessa' Ina Garten Agrees to Meet Dying Boy, But is it Too Late To Save Her Reputation?


One of my favorite chef’s to watch on the Food Network, Ina Garten – also known to her fans as the Barefoot Contessa, is in some hot water lately.

In case you haven’t heard the story, 6-year-old Enzo Pareda, who is suffering from leukemia, went to the Make a Wish Foundation and asked to meet and cook with Ina Garten, his favorite chef.

Reports say that Garten’s reps had turned down the boy’s request twice; the first time she said no because of a book tour she was on. The second time she said no because she was too busy, and that “…unfortunately, as much as she would like to, it’s absolutely impossible for her to grant every request she receives.”

In response to the second “no” to their request, Pareda’s mother posted on their website: ”I felt terrible for him, he has been unwavering in his desire to meet her for 3 years and despite many attempts to get him to pick a 2nd wish or change his mind he would not.” When hearing the news a second time, Pareda asked his mother, “Why doesn’t she want to meet me?,” and “I still want her as my 1st wish, even if she doesn’t want me.”

Talk about heartbreaking! Now even though yesterday she FINALLY agreed to meet the dying boy, I’m wondering a few things about this story. I wonder if she agreed to meet the boy because of all the heat she was feeling from the media and from outraged fans. I also wonder if it’s too late to now make up for her coldness – I’m sure that there are not a whole lot of children that would use their wish from the Make A Wish Foundation to meet her, and to that point, how many requests from dying children can she possibly get every year? And how could she possibly turn any of them down?!

What are your thoughts and feelings on this story?

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