Spiky-haired diner lurker Guy Fieri could care less what anyone thinks of him. In an interview with Success magazine the chef and Anthony Bourdain's favorite verbal punching bag (he once described Fieri's Times Square restaurant as a "terror dome") says he is who he is and won't be changing anytime soon.
"I'm like anybody else," Fieri says. "You get enough, you can get beat up. You can get hurt. You can get frustrated. You can get demoralized." The level of hatred slung his way also seems to surprise him. "If there are 100 people who don't like me, 90 of them don't have a reason, Have I pissed some people off? Yes. Have I done wrong? I'm not sitting here saying I haven't. But most of the negativity is entirely superficial."
Fieri has built his brand around Hawaiian shirts and everyman food. His look even inspired a music video. So, it comes as no surprise that he won't be changing his style anytime soon. "What am I supposed to do? Am I supposed to stop being me? If someone boos a quarterback, does that mean he stops throwing his favorite pass?" He adds:
"If I probably didn't have tattoos, or if I probably didn't bleach my hair, or if I probably didn't wear blue jeans and a T-shirt to fancy things, if I didn't do things that make me look like someone who's whacked out of their mind, it'd probably be different. But then again, that's how I wanna dress. And I like my tattoos. And I like my haircut the way it is."
For all his haters, Fieri can count on fans like Lea Michele and Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives-inspired video mashups. And while his business forecast isn't completely rosy, the chef is currently in the process of opening a smokehouse in Louisville, Kentucky. Meanwhile, Fieri's chief critic Anthony Bourdain seems to be refocusing his negative attentions on a different but still iconically quaffed celebrity-turned-would-be politician. Shine on Guy Fieri.