“Oh…let him kill me. I won’t have to do any more sit-ups.”
September 3, 2011

(a note to readers before you read on to more Seinfeld-isms below)

It was cut from the episode, the above Costanza line, before “The Busboy” aired. (Turn on the “Notes About Nothing” function while watching any Seinfeld episode on DVD to get such priceless trivia.) George inadvertently played a hand in the kneejerk firing of a waiter at a restaurant where he and Jerry were dining. When Kramer later announced in Jerry’s apartment that the waiter had found the building and was headed up, George reacted like a man who knows a recently released convict is headed for him. This is part of what came out of his mouth.

This sort of thing didn’t come out of my mouth but it did run through my mind in recent days–let it kill me–as we feared a little for our lives in the path of Hurricane Irene. We got out of the way completely, fleeing town for higher ground, so all was well…even though, initially, it didn’t end quite as well. Returning home to find the power out for days to come, we had to seek more “other ground” (i.e., stay with family elsewhere) again.

To cut to the chase, as George might say: I’m back, baby! (as George’s father did in fact once say).

One more Seinfeld-in-culture moment, then, that I’d planned for last month: it was three years ago in August that Microsoft told the world they’d tapped the man himself, Jerry Seinfeld, to be the face of a $300 million campaign to reboot the Windows brand. The result, you may recall, was some commercials featuring Jerry and the Microsoft Man himself, Bill Gates.

The reaction of the public (or rather, the lack thereof), you may also recall, led to the canning of those commercials not long after they began airing.

We don’t need to view the “notes about nothing” on this little episode to know that Jerry didn’t get fired. One only needs to catch a show of Jerry’s tour (where he continues to play to packed houses)…

or check your local TV listings for how often Seinfeld reruns are on…

or look at how many people have friended the Seinfeld page on Facebook…

(or keep up with this guide-to-life blog…)

to understand why Microsoft hired him in the first place.

Seinfeld is a brand that needs no reboot.

“Vile weed!”
July 23, 2010

A theatrical observation for those times when you’re served a dish you despise, and you must sound a barbaric yawp about it over the tabletop of your world.

Kramer had to hide from Jerry his addiction to the delectable offerings of the nearby chicken roaster restaurant, so Kramer enlisted Newman to pick up food from the restaurant without Jerry knowing it. When Jerry happened to pass Newman with an armful of takeout, a container of broccoli–something Newman despised–caught Jerry’s eye. Jerry asked Newman to take a bite. Newman’s attempt to maintain the Newman/Kramer subterfuge led to this little ode to the sprout…as it ejected, half-masticated, from his mouth.

Unlike Newman himself, there’s more here than meets the eye–more to this observation than excoriating what sprouts out of the ground. With these two words, the sky is the limit: you can trash whole eateries (“Vile bistro!”), dump on culture (“Vile movie!”), and even categorically castigate people (“Vile celebrity!”). Brush off any accusation that you’re exaggerating to make a point; exaggeration is the point. Announcing your repulsion, at the moment you are repulsed, is to seize the day as Newman did. In carpe newman, subtlety is not a good quality.

From “The Chicken Roaster”
Episode 8, Season 8
Seinfeld Volume 7, Disc 2
Timecode for the scene: 17:09

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