In so many ways, all eyes were on New York City. Not just for what had happened, but for what and who we were. NYC is one of the broadcast centers of the nation. And, slowly, the media began to shake off the darkness. We all know how Letterman, John Steward, SNL and even Howard Stern started up their shows-both trying to acknowledge the change while conceding that some things, like the need to laugh, never change.
Half way across the country, PHC had been on its hiatus with reruns for the summer. Their season opener was set for 10/10/01. Not for nothing, but by that time, my day job had been back up and running in Lower Manhattan for weeks. We were pressing forward, step by step, with the ashes and smoke still drifting out of Ground Zero. Work pushed us forward. But, on the freelancing front, try writing comedy.
I tried. I alternated between bits that acknowledged the attack and others that didn't. It wouldn't be until the end of the month, with Halloween, that I went back to normal. Until then, it was working it out through the show's established characters. And a theme became the near-commercialization of the tragedy. Everyone and every business seemed to be jumping on the patriotic wagon, so that became a subject that I could poke fun of. As is a theme of these posts, this wasn't used. I thought it quite topical and whimsical, but it didn't make the cut. So, I've been trying to post these around the time they were created, (in lieu of the actual anniversary of 9/11), we present:
GK: This portion of our show brought to you by the Cafe Boeuf, with your host, Maurice the maitre'd. Bon jour, Maurice.
TK: You what? You want some juice?
GK: No, bon jour. Hello.
TK: Ah, bon jour.
GK: I've been very impressed by the way Americans have been coming together and trying to support one another in the last few weeks. And I was very surprised to see you and your cafe demonstrate such a patriotic streak.
TK: Viva America!
GK: My, Maurice, I'm touched by the sentiment. It's almost like the last 26 years never happened.
TK: The French had never been known for their long-term memory.
GK: So, am I to understand you've put together a special menu to show your support for America?
TK: Oui. Because we here at Cafe Boeuf believe that Americans should be supported and better fed.
GK: What are some of these new dishes?
TK: Well, we have this delicious entree, it's our Chicken Red, White and Cordon Bleu
GK; It looks like a piece of chicken cordon bleu with a small American flag stuck in it.
TK: Basically, oui.
GK: I imagine it's the thought that counts.
TK: That's what our focus groups tell us.
GK: What else?
TK: There's this very tasty U.S.cargot.
GK: Okay, again, it appears to be a plate of snails, with a small American flag stuck in it.
TK: Who is the patriot here? You or me? Come along to our next plate.
GK: This smells good. What are we looking at here?
TK: We have renamed our French Onion soup to American Onion soup.
GK: Do you use American Onions?
TK: There's not such thing as American onions.
GK: There's Bermuda Onions. I thought maybe---
GK: Well, do you use American cheese on it?
TK: Are you mad? Of course not.
GK: How does American Onion soup differ from French Onion soup?
TK: The small American flag we have sticking out of it.
GK: I was beginning to assume as much.
TK: It is just a small way that we here at Cafe Boeuf can say to Americans, we sympathize with you, please eat here.
GK: Thank you, Maurice the Maitre'd, and thank you Cafe Boeuf. For French cuisine with a Yankee Doodle flair.