I need to have my own cooking show. On my first episode, the cameras will turn to me, standing in some really expensive kitchen. I’ll be wearing an apron and holding a whisk. Or maybe a spatula. No, definitely a whisk. And I’ll welcome everyone to the show and call out a special guest, some celebrity chef that whatever network I’ll be working for ordered to make an appearance on my show to boost the ratings of my first episode. But as soon as the guest comes out, wearing his or her chef uniform, getting greeted by me, “Hey Chef! Welcome to the show!” I’ll start in with a really bizarre line of questioning. I’ll start asking for the chef’s opinions on post-9/11 foreign policy. I’ll get really angry, talking about government conspiracies. Every time I want to make a really dramatic point, I’ll swing and jab my whisk wildly in the air, causing my celebrity guest chef to take a few steps back, which will cause me to take a few steps closer. It will be really uncomfortable for everyone involved. I won’t even cook a single dish. It will be just crazy, wild talk.
And then when I show up for work the next day, I’ll be like, “Whoa. Where is everyone? Why aren’t there any camera people? What happened to the studio audience?” But the place will be totally deserted, empty, so my questions will just echo around the vacant studio, unanswered. And then my agent will call me up. “Change of plans Rob. The studio didn’t think you were a good fit for a cooking show.” I’ll be enraged, outraged, incensed, irate, prorated, deflated, no inflated, really overinflated. But just as I’m about to burst, to pop, to tell off my agent, tell him what I really think of him, him and his no-talent talent agency, him and his stupid Audi convertible – who are you trying to impress, huh? – he’ll tell me that the network was so impressed by my political commentary, inspired really, that they’ve decided to give me my own political commentary show, and it starts taping in twenty minutes.
So I won’t even have time to change out of my cooking show host outfit. It’s, like I said, really just an apron over my regular clothing, but I’ll seriously be so overwhelmed by the change in programming that I won’t have any time to reach around and untie it. Besides, I had to find somebody to help me tie it just right. Does anybody else have trouble making knots when the string isn’t right in front of your face? So I’ll show up with the apron on. And I’m still holding the whisk. Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever let it go, not since I picked it up the day before. And I’m gripping it way too tightly. Like my hand hurts, like I’ve been clenching it for way too long. And it’s very shaky, the tremors going all the way up past my elbow, it’s not normal, it’s really weird.
But I’ll make it to the studio just in time. And someone’s like, “Rob, we’ve got to get you to makeup!” and I’ll just say, “No time!” and I’ll take my seat and start in on the commentary. But this time I’m not holding back, not like on the cooking show. You want action? You want political commentary? You want some zest? Well here it is. Unscripted. Uncensored. Unfiltered. Uninhibited. Unbeknownst. Undulating. Understated. Unipotent. Unisex. And it’ll be way too much. Even crazy political conspiracy aficionados won’t be able to make sense of whatever it is that I’m trying to say. I’ll keep bringing up 9/11 and 9/12 and 9/13 and the Ground Zero mosque and the Ground Zero Deli and the Ground Zero’s on all of the other alternate parallel Earths, planets where there was no 9/11, well, where there was a 9/11, but it wasn’t our 9/11, and what are they trying to hide over there on Earth-2, what exactly are they trying to hide on the ninth and eleventh floors of the new World Trade Center and, why haven’t I been able to personally see Joe Biden’s birth certificate or Hillary Clinton’s high school diploma? And my whisk is trembling. The sweat from the palm of my hand is making its way all the way down, so that every time I make a particularly violent point, drops of perspiration are flying from the utensil in every direction I jab.
But then I’ll stop, midsentence. This isn’t what I signed up for. This isn’t at all what I had in mind when I set out to become a host of my own cooking show. I won’t know how I’ve veered so wildly off course. The grip on my whisk will ease up, just a little bit, just a little bit of blood returning to my clenched fist. I’ll take out some eggs. I’ll start whisking them. I’ll have found myself. I’ll keep whisking faster and faster and whispering to myself, “I’m back!” But I won’t really be whispering. I’ll be shouting. I’ll be screaming. Spit flying from my mouth, mixing in with the eggs, but I’m whisking so intensely that nobody really notices, and there’s already a lot of egg foam at the top, from the whisking, that the spittle blends right in. And the camera men will turn off the cameras and they’ll just wheel me, they’ll wheel the whole desk back to my original cooking show studio and the lights will go on and the cameras will start running. “I’m back!” I’ll scream to a packed live studio audience. And everyone will be going crazy. It’ll be nuts. Absolutely, totally nuts.