Monday, November 30, 2009

Who are the Stooges?

(I know Ted Koppel isn’t on Nightline anymore. But bear with me, I don’t watch much tv these days and couldn’t tell you who anchors the show if you showed me a picture and spotted me the vowels, and S, T, and R. And if you flat out told me, I still wouldn’t recognize him/her.)

TK: Good evening, this is Ted Koppel and welcome to Nightline. Tonight: Crashing the White House. We have heard a disturbing report that some ordinary citizens walked into a State Dinner with no invitations. We now go live to our white house correspondent: Helen Thomas.

(I know Helen Thomas doesn’t work for ABC. But she does/did cover the White House and I can’t make up an interesting name.)

HT: Ted, in a shocking display of bravado, three middle-aged men attempted to gain entrance to the State Dinner thrown in honor of Togo. Quick thinking service agents discovered them as the last one tried to enter and after a lot of eye gouging, escorted them from the premises. With me now is Dash Thoroughgood, head of the secret service detail. Dash, can you tell me how the men almost slipped past security?

DT: Well Helen, the men came cleverly disguised as members of the media. When asked for their invitations, the first two displayed buttons that read "Press".

HT: So they obviously didn’t have the proper credentials like I’m wearing around my neck right now, and your agents moved in.

DT: No, we let the first two men in. It was when the third man displayed a "Pull" button that we figured something was up. The third man, one Curly Howard, then did this thing snapping his fingers against his open hand, then drummed his fingers against his jaw making an odd popping sound. Then the second gentleman, Moe Howard, hit his fist with the opposite fist, causing his entire arm to rotate up in an arc and boink an agent on the head. We quickly neutralized them at that point along with the other conspirator, Larry Fine.

HT: How close did they get to the President?

DT: Oh not very. We have every reason to believe they intended to start a pie fight. They did go through the metal detectors and had no weapons. We believe they stole those "press" buttons from the condom machine in the men’s restroom in the White House.

TK: Dash, this is Ted Koppel in New York. Can you elaborate on how guests are screened for these functions?

DT: Well, we don’t really want to give away any secrets.

TK: I assume everyone must present some sort of official invitation?

DT: Oh no, that would be crass. We train our agents to just kind of spot check people and see if they belong. You know, like for a Togo function, you’re not going to let in someone wearing a kilt.

TK: And how does one dress for a Togo function?

DT: Usually brightly colored robes. Right before an event we have everyone look at the wikipedia entry for that country to get a feel for how people should look, act and talk. By the same token, we probably wouldn’t let someone in that was whistling sea shanties.

TK: So is it safe to say you do a little racial profiling?

DT: No, these men were white.

TK: Thank you Dash. We’re now joined by a special guest in the studio, an acquaintance of the gate crashing suspects. Please welcome Shemp Howard.

SH: Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh, oh. Glad to be here Ted.

TK: Is it true that you were supposed to be the fourth gate crasher?

SH: No, it was always a three-man show. I got voted off by the focus groups. They liked Curly better.

TK: Focus groups? You’re saying this was essentially a tv appearance?

SH: Oh absolutely. But audiences think fat, bald men are funnier.

TK: Oh I don’t know; I’m very amused by your bulbous nose and greasy hair. Anyway, what was the reason for the gate crashing?

SH: Laughs. The goal was to start a pie fight and maybe somehow trigger the sprinkler system. Wet, pie fights always score well with audiences.

TK: But what about the President? How can you bring such low-brow humor to an important state dinner?

SH: He was in on it.

TK: You don’t say.

SH: I do. In the grand finale, Moe was going to eye gouge the President.

TK: That’s outrageous!

SH: But the President would be ready, and he’d place his hand perpendicular to his nose to block the gouging. Then he’d spray Moe with a fire extinguisher.

TK: I don’t know what to say.

SH: Say nothing. Just laugh.

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