New York Times article on Maria Bartiromo, CNBC’s “Money Honey,” includes a too brief mention of Erin Burnett ’98.

Ms. Bartiromo said she has never had a problem with the “Money Honey” nickname (tagged on her early in her CNBC career by Mr. Murdoch’s New York Post) — she has trademarked it for herself. She plans to use that trademark for a cartoon character called “Money Honey,” who will appear in a series of animated short pieces aimed at teaching children some basics about money.

Not an EphBlog paraody, I swear! Money Honey videos will, I hope, not make it into my daughters’ DVD collection.

Of the name, she said, “Let it roll off my back, and I’m flattered to have the notice.”

If Ms. Bartiromo’s striking looks and high profile in business circles have helped her draw viewers and land big interviews, they have also helped attract the kind of attention that male television figures — like, say, Larry Kudlow and Jim Cramer of CNBC — never seem to draw. Most recently, there have been items in the gossip columns about a supposed rivalry with a new CNBC star, Erin Burnett.

“You know, people love to see some kind of controversy,” Ms. Bartiromo said. “I think Erin’s terrific; she’s doing a great job. And frankly, we have, at this point, several women who are beautiful and very smart. What’s not to love?”

Indeed. But if you are Erin Burnett’s agent, Alan Berger, you want the controversy to continue, you want Erin’s name in the papers, you want Robert Murdoch to offer her a big raise to move over to the Fox Business Channel. What do you do? Consider three options as to how you would recommend that Erin respond to a question from the Times reporter.

(For her part in the mutual admiration society, Ms. Burnett said, in an e-mailed comment, “Maria is the hardest-working person I know. She’s raised the bar in business news and it’s invigorating to work with her.”)

(For her part in the mutual admiration society, Ms. Burnett said, in an e-mailed comment, “Maria is the hardest-working person I know. Over two decades, she’s raised the bar in business news and it’s invigorating to work with her.”)

(For her part in the mutual admiration society, Ms. Burnett said, in an e-mailed comment, “Maria is the hardest-working 40 year-old I know. She’s raised the bar in business news and it’s invigorating to work with her.”)

The problem with basing a career on the Money Honey schtick is that age catches up with all of us. (Alas, it appears that Alan Berger did not get through to Erin before she sent that e-mail. So, the first option is what got into the Times. I bet that Berger wishes she went with option 2.)

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