Joe Arpaio and Eddie Matney Team Up in the Kitchen, Thanks to Jason Rose

In a bit of culinary news that's something of a departure from our typical coverage here at Chow Bella, we must share the latest dining chapter at the county jail. You know, home of the green baloney sandwich.  

Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio today issued a press release announcing he just received a donation of 5,000 pounds of beef liver. Tomorrow he and Chef Eddie Matney will join dozens of jail inmates in the kitchen as they prepare a meal of liver and onions -- the sheriff's favorite, and just in time for his birthday on Sunday.

No word in the press release as to whether Arpaio actually intends to eat dinner with the inmates on Sunday. And will there be cake?

You wouldn't know it unless you kept close track of public relations moguls and their clients (okay, we're nerds), but this is simply the latest stunt cooked up by none other than Jason Rose, a public relations master at mixing and matching his clients. Remember when Arpaio shilled pink underwear for Pink Taco? That was Rose. He can pretty much get the sheriff to prance out on behalf of anyone or anything, from what we've seen over the years.

This time, though, the sheriff's smart. There's no downside to his liver escapade. It's Matney who should be embarrassed. Eddie Matney -- who's run several amazing, successful restaurants around town over the years, including, now, Eddie's House in Scottsdale -- doesn't need to stoop so low.

Really, Eddie, buddy Jason Rose aside, why canoodle with Joe Arpaio? You're an upstanding family man, a great guy. If it weren't for your lamb chops, we might have to say right here and now that we'll never return to your restaurant.

And seriously, here's some food for thought, Chef Matney. If you must go at all, don't make this your only trip to the jail. Why don't you volunteer your time to teach some food preparation classes to inmates, help them figure out a way back on their feet? Don't just make this about a one-time photo opp. It's actually a nice idea to teach these people how to cook. See if the sheriff will have you back, after the cameras are off.

Jason, we're sure you can make that happen.  

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Amy Silverman is a two-time winner of the Arizona Press Club’s Journalist of the Year award. Her work has appeared on the radio show This American Life and in the New York Times, the Washington Post, Lenny Letter, and Brain, Child. She’s the co-curator of the live reading series Bar Flies, and a commentator for KJZZ, the NPR affiliate in Phoenix. Silverman is the author of the book My Heart Can’t Even Believe It: A Story of Science, Love, and Down Syndrome (Woodbine House 2016). Follow her on Instagram (@amysilverman), Twitter (@amysilvermanaz), and at amy-silverman.com.