It was last Sunday and for some reason Weiskopf was AWOL from Caribou.  I sat alone, trapped within earshot of clowns.

Couldn’t they be softer? And where is the OFF button?

The Heat…Charley Sheen…Politics. Three men shared a table, each evidently an expert. Grandma Bogart would have said (in Hebrew), “…the more they talk the less they say….” Wisely I’d opted out of their conclave, seeking refuge tables away.

They just wouldn’t shut up. Miami’s struggles, Sheen’s tumble…As my son would say: “Just shoot me now.”

On his PBS series “Meeting of the Minds” Steve Allen surrounded the set with history’s great minds. The likes of Shakespeare or Einstein shared ideas with the host. What a concept! Why, I wondered, did it take a studio production to get it done?

Enthusiasm building, I conjured breaking bread at once with personal heroes: some friends, some acquaintances; some living, one dead…and planned my own Algonquin Round Table. Perhaps a fantasy, still, it was an idea whose time had come.

Wouldn’t meet at Corky’s. Could never violate the sanctity of Wednesday morning’s venue. Whatever…we’d find a place. And in they’d come, my party of five:

First Michael (don’t call him “Mike), who’s in marketing. A self-made man, he has the uncanny knack of being daring and successful while never losing priorities. Seat him facing the door; he likes to greet people.

Then Leonard, (of blessed memory). For years he was a fixture in his box behind home plate. Those were the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s when attendance so ebbed that each fan had his own usher. After decades of losses, Leonard finally erupted at the front office, trading season tickets for Torah study. He spent his final years with peace and serenity and in so doing, suffered not when Mesa stayed in Game Seven.

And Stuart, my machatin. Guy has the perfect blend of intellect and street smarts—plus the New York accent.

Which leads me to Leslie. Need a female voice. She too is family—Columbus office. I’m not sure if we’re technically related, but we do relate. Balanced, “Sister Golden Hair” is as close to normal as one can get and still retain cool.

Finally…tympany…) there is Siegal. This Jewish Kramer, for years a mainstay on Wednesdays, withdrew a few years back, preferring to spend days on the internet doing…whatever. (It’s not easy. I suppose, running Kramerica). Still, his unique spin would up the price of poker in any discourse.

Could I pull this off? I doubt it. It’s a fantasy, though, that easily trumps the coffee house narishkeit. It’s a mind game I’d rather play than sit with the jokers.  Sometimes sitting alone (as my father woud say), is “addition by subtraction.”

I’m at Caribou now, actually…on my laptop. Weiskopf’s due soon and together we’ll end our day scouring the problems of the world.

As experts.

Leave a Reply