Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Tom, Chef

Man, I did all that work looking for a good Gmail account when was available?

I downloaded the attachment and replied to their message. I signed my full name with my social security number so they'd be sure it was really me.

* * *

Win Butler and Tom Colicchio were both hanging out in my dream last night. I spent all my time talking to an amused Tom about some "Top Chef" suggestions.

First, I brought up my longstanding theory on "The Real World": the show would benefit from an unexciting setting. Instead of placing the young human nightmares in 24-hour parties like New Orleans or New York, MTV should set the show in places like Iowa or Utah. This would force the kids to make their own fun, with disastrous and hilarious consequences.

This theory doesn't work as well for "Top Chef", since it airs very little content outside of the kitchen. Still, maybe my dream self's idea could work for the show. It could be refreshing to see the contestants shopping somewhere other than Whole Foods -- running around the Des Moines HyVee's tiny organic section searching for microgreens and artisanal cheese.

My second, better idea for Tom was an elimination challenge: instead of catering a wedding reception, serve food at a funeral. (Preferably a funeral in a small German Catholic town. Noticing a pattern, I once asked an old monsignor if he'd ever been to a funeral where they did not serve ham and green beans. "Never in my life," he replied.) Tell me you wouldn't watch this episode! Think of the possibilities!

How would the chefs respond?
"I'm taking a big risk with this devil's food cake, but when she wasn't crying, the widow seemed like she had a great sense of humor and a sweet tooth."

Would the grieving attendees give more honest feedback than usual?
"This beef is tougher than my old man was on me. *sigh* Rest in peace, Dad."

Judge's table would be the best ever!
"Your celery foam was wholly inappropriate for the occasion."

"In situations like these, heirloom tomatoes take on even more importance. I'm sorry, but your dish did not respect that."

"This being an Irish wake, I understand your choice to serve corned beef and cabbage. Unfortunately, it just didn't work. And frankly, your loaded baked potato was insulting."


Alison said...

I'm upset that your dream self chose to talk to Tom Colicchio instead of Win Butler, but I enjoyed this nonetheless.

Anonymous said...

I think you've been the victim of an extraction. Colicchio is a world-class dream-thief.

Your judges' table comments are the best.


Anonymous said...

Man, I cannot stop laughing. What a tremendous idea. I think the chefs would only be allowed to serve their dishes out of big brown plastic tubs. The guest judge would have to be whoever is running Syl's Catering these days.


Floyd said...

I don't get any of these jokes. Am I the only person in the world that hates cooking shows? It's like a show where magicians show you how they do their tricks. I don't want to know how it's done! Just make the magic!

dn said...

Alison, I have no suggestions for Win. Plus, I think he'd bring up Haiti and make me feel guilty and depressed.

Shawn, I considered throwing an Inception joke in my introduction. Yours is better.

Serpentine, you know I am loyal to Ray's Countryside Catering, and therefore cannot abide that guest judge.

Floyd, yes. Lots of us like to know those tricks, so we can "cook food".

Floyd said...

It must be my aristocratic blood that makes me averse to handling food before it's prepared. Except for hot dogs, of course. I cook those all the time.

Jenny said...

You missed your calling - you should create reality television. I would definitely watch the funeral challenge episode.