America's most testosterone-fueled news channel just had itself a little chat about gay CEOs. It went about as smoothly as you might expect.
New York Times columnist Jim Stewart was on CNBC Friday morning discussing the mystery of why chief executives in Corporate America aren't outing themselves left and right. He has a new column -- with the very New York Timesy headline "Among Gay CEOs, The Pressure To Conform" -- about former BP CEO John Browne, who has only discussed his own sexuality after retirement.
Stewart, who is openly gay, expressed surprise that none of the gay CEOs he talked to for the column -- and there are many, apparently -- were willing to go on the record about their experience.
At which point CNBC anchor Simon Hobbs interjected:
"I think Tim Cook is fairly open about the fact that he is gay at the head of Apple, isn't he?"
There followed approximately four seconds of utter silence -- an eternity in television time -- while the other four people on the set each looked like they might have pooped their pants just a little bit.