John Bolaris Got Screwed

Fox 29 knew what they were getting into when they hired the “notorious pussy hound,” so why should he be fired for being himself?

John Bolaris knows what he was wearing on March 28, 2010.

“Armani jeans, cotton white shirt with a hint of yellow pinstripes, Salvatore Ferragamo black shoes,” he told Playboy, later adding that all of his suits were made by Hugo Boss. Bolaris’ outfits, lifestyle and Philadelphia’s supposed insatiable lust for up-to-the-minute updates on his escapades were revealed in poetic detail in this month’s issue. “Just watching his life unfold, or maybe unravel, spices up their own drab lives,” the magazine says of us. “They experience those Estonian women vicariously through Bolaris.”

Oh, yes, the Estonian women. The Playboy profile’s news peg is the tale, previously detailed in the Daily News, of how Bolaris was allegedly scammed out of $43,712.25 by a ring that hired pretty Eastern European women to bring out-of-towners to private clubs and charge them exorbitant prices for liquor, usually faking the credit card signatures. “One of them started rubbing me, opened my mouth, and said, ‘Do shot,'” Bolaris told the Daily News. Bolaris was Victim No. 88. Seventeen people were indicted in April;  two women pled guilty in June.

Yesterday John Bolaris and Fox 29 “mutually agreed” to part ways, a few weeks after he was suspended from the station. Although the article paints John Bolaris as the biggest celebrity we yokels in Philadelphia have ever seen, apparently the station didn’t think it reflected well on them.

This is silly. Even though the story was in the Daily News in May, its retelling in Playboy—along with stories of Bolaris receiving a nude photo from a woman and, even worse, hanging at Serafina—probably brought more attention to scam and to Bolaris’ carousing. But John Bolaris isn’t Hurricane Schwartz. He already had a reputation as a “notorious pussy hound” (Playboy’s words) when Fox 29 brought him back to Philadelphia in 2008. John Bolaris is gone from Fox 29 for being John Bolaris. He got screwed.

Um, again.

Yes, John Bolaris is an easy target, but that’s kind of the point, no? Bolaris’ escapade in Miami wasn’t any different than the public picture he’s painted in the last few decades in Philadelphia. It was actually even better, the ultimate John Bolaris story, his entire self distilled into one ridiculous tale of scams, mystery paintings and disputed credit card charges. If anything, it pushes his one public weather quasi-failure—the Storm of the Century that wasn’t in March 2001—deeper out of the public consciousness.

Obviously, the Playboy story is an easy way to get rid of John Bolaris for a litany of offenses, known and unknown. And he got a cool $100,000 in a settlement with American Express, which originally upheld the credit card charges. So don’t feel too bad if you don’t want to.

But if you’re going to get excited about someone losing his job in Philadelphia, it better be Andy Reid.

From his interactions with his Twitter doppelganger and other detractors on Twitter, it seems Bolaris thought he’d be treated as a hero for helping the FBI take down a scam ring. And, hey, why not? Philly Pretzel Factory advertises buying a dozen pretzels for your co-workers makes you a hero. Bolaris isn’t as heroic as the agent who posed as a corrupt cop and infiltrated the scam ring, but he deserves a little credit.

I think we should all toast John Bolaris. Everyone put on your favorite shirt with a hint of pinstripes, raise your glass … and do shot.

Around The Web

Be respectful of our online community and contribute to an engaging conversation. We reserve the right to ban impersonators and remove comments that contain personal attacks, threats, or profanity, or are flat-out offensive. By posting here, you are permitting Philadelphia magazine and Metro Corp. to edit and republish your comment in all media.

  • Victor Fiorillo

    Do shot!

  • suburbdog1

    Totally agree! FOX 29 is lame for firing Bolaris. They have no personalities on that station, except for Mike Jerrick in the morning. The Bolaris firing reminds me of AFLAC firing Gilbert Gottfrield when they realized he wasn’t a milquetoast comedian. Can someone start a Bring Back Bolaris Facebook page already?

  • Jackie

    Please – while I appreciate the humor in Dan’s article – Bolaris is a nightmare employee. He was undoubtedly told do not talk with Playboy and he did anyway – he talks to the media all of the time without permission and a TV station is allowed to set rules and protect its image. Bolaris has always been a losse cannon. Plus, the ratings went down since Bolaris has been at the station, that is his greatest sin. Had the ratings been higher, Fox would have kept him. He made it easy for them.

  • peter1

    I don’t understand why anyone gives a rat’s ass who tells you what the weather’s gonna be tomorrow. Just pop on the Weatherscan channel on cable, you get your info in one minute, whenever you need it, with the same accuracy or better, and you move on with your life. The fact that the guy is a “celebrity” in and of itself is ridiculous.

  • John

    For the person who said Fox29 has no personality. I agree with that statement with the excpetion of one person on Fox 29 and that person is Steve Keeley. That guy is hillarious and he doesnt even know it. It’s like having an orange skinned Philadelphia version of Denis Leary every morning. Now that guy is a keeper!!!