Despite what you may have heard, the number of words a picture is worth varies widely. Take the beautiful Afghan girl on a 1985 cover of National Geographic. That photograph's worth sixty, seventy thousand words. Other photos, like, say, a shot of Nadia Bohr's nephew awkwardly attempting - and failing - to score a soccer goal probably is good for 12 or 15.
Now, the photograph that accompanies this story clocks in at 507 words, including the caption . Silverton to Reichl at Jar: "Time to Leave. Now!"
The photograph, taken at Jar by award-winning NBC news producer Madeleine Hareringer, clearly shows an exasperated Nancy Silverton, her patience gone, her annoyance in bloom, and, most alarmingly, her wine red glass removed.
Look at that photo and you know what Silverton is thinking. 'Fancy Ruth leaning all into Michael, white wine glass right there. Me, I got nothing.' And you can understand why Nancy, at least according to sources, told Ruth to get out.
Reichl moved into Silverton's Van Ness Palace on January 22 with her husband Michael Singer. From then, up until that photo was taken 41 days later, the two women seemed, in public at least, to get along like a fragrant bouquet of sweet peas. Reichl even won the coveted Nancy Silverton's "Top House Guest of the Month" award in February. Liz "Go Go" Hong, a dinner guest at the Van Ness Palace in mid-February, was stunned when she heard that Reichl had been asked to leave. "I had no idea," Go Go said, "They seemed to get along great. Though now that i think about it, Nancy did come down hard on Ruth for making a cake that crumbled."
Van Ness Palace security footage of the kitchen, obtained here, reveals that Reichl made the same Dario Cecchini-inspired olive oil orange cake five times. One, two, three, four, five. Same cake. "No one make the same cake five times with out being ordered to," said renowned pastry chef Sherry Yard. "I've seen the security tape and Ruth does not look happy."
At one point, after baking the fourth one, Reichl places the plate holding the cake on the edge of the table, allowing Silverton's dog Zeke to gobble most of it. When Silverton returns home at midnight and finds out, she says "She did that on purpose." according to a mouth-reading expert who has seen the tape several times.
But, the final straws were drawn at a Monday night dinner at Jar and a fray became a rip. Reichl hoarded chef's Suzanne Tracht lemongrass chicken, one of Silverton's favorite dishes at Jar. Then there was the debacle with the wine: Reidel Vinum Montrachet glasses of 2008 Marcassin Estate Chardonnay for Ruth; a Cost Plus red/blush wine glass of February 2014 Bastianich Chianti Neo-Classico for Nancy.
A spokeswoman for Reichl would not confirm the writer had been told to leave Los Angeles. "Ruth was gong to leave anyway. She has a novel to promote in New York City. It's called "Delicious'."
Kate Green, Silverton's assistant, tweeted this afternoon on @funwithkate "I hope her book isn't about that cake."