A stunned and bitterTiffany Fox lashed out angrily after learning she had "only" tied with Hourie Sahakian for the prestigious GOYA ( Guest of the Year Award), bestowed annually to the best house guest at Nancy Silverton's Umbrian home,
Fox, a first year Team Panicale member whose strong early showing had her convinced she was a shoe-in to win the award outright, stared at her phone in disbelief when she learned that another rookie, Hourie Sahakian, had come on strong to tie her for the honors.
"I hate you!" Fox texted Michael Krkorian who informed her of the panel's decision "I hate your motherfucking Helen-loving guts." She later Facebook messaged Krikorian "I HATE YOU" ( see photo below)
Meanwhile across town. Sahakian reacted with dignity and a vow to do even more when she returns next year.
"I'm honored to share this very important award with Tiffany," said Sahakian via Facebook as she dined at Gino Angelini's osteria in Los Angeles.
It was a memorable dinner in Umbria at the restaurant of a friend of Gino Angelini's that helped propel Sahakian into the controversial tie with Fox The meal,. at Villa Roncalli, was Team Panicale's best ever at an Umbrian restaurant and it provided Hourie with several reflective moments that scored well with the judges.
After the decision was announced Monday, critics noted that it was, also, during Tiffany Fox's most reflective moments that garnered her high praise and racked up major points.
Shortly after her arrival in Italy, Fox was a mortified witness to a profanity-laced argument between her hosts Nancy and Michael when the two told each other to "shuddup", "shut the fuck up" and "you think know every goddamn thing", in an argument based on Krikorian's fierce dislike of GPS. Immediately after, on a two-hour drive In the back seat, a shell-shocked Fox rebounded to impress everyone with a soul bearing, sometimes-painful, often-funny recounting of her life including her ordeal with cancer (which went into remission seven years ago.), her entree into the cooking world and her negative views on the dating life in Los Angeles.
(NOTE :Stories of hardship do well in the GOYA competition. Last year's winner.Liz "Go Go" Hong wooed most of Italy during her stay by pretending to be mentally retarded and obsessed with "Saldis" (Sales) then, miraculously, becoming intelligent and charming over the course of one week.)
Fox dominated Sahakian in one category:: Number of times mentioning the words "Matt Michaelson". outscoring her 1,865 to zero.
At one point, Sahakian asked "Who's Matt Michaelson?"
"Helen's boyfriend," Krikorian replied.
"Da-yum, Michael," an angry Fox said. "Why the fuck did you have to go say that?.I hate you."
(NOTE: To qualify for GOYA, a guest must stay at the house for at least three nights. Elizabeth Falkner had a brilliant run in Panciale, proving to be a delight and quite helpful, but the judges thought it would send a wrong message to the world's youth by awarding her after she committed a felony by breaking into Nancy's house and "Crashing". Also, Deb Michail was another charmer and a whiz in the kitchen ( her lardo-wrapped ricotta stuffed zucchini flowers won the annual stuffed zucchini flowers competition) , however her near-constant use of GPS ( even to go from the bedroom to the bathroom ), ultimately proved her downfall.
Another very strong performance was turned in by Susan Swan. the Africa- American, Oakland -raised Library Media Specialist of the St. Helena Unified School District in Napa Valley. . Along with her husband. photographer, Steven Rothfield., she was very charming, but left far too soon.)