Somewhere Over America — Flying at thirty thousand feet above Kansas and hearing your pilot speak over the PA with a fairly Cajun drawl and a plethora of curses and insults can be disconcerting. What is worse is finding out that your pilot is none other than Louis LaPlante, President of Gish Gallop.
“I didn’t know you were a pilot, Lou,” I said, once I saw he was who was flying the Super-Gish Gallop plane. “I’m not. I heard somewhere that you were, though” said Lou, as he got out of the captain’s chair and forced me to take the controls. I complained that I hadn’t flown a plane in 20 years or more, and that he had taken off and gotten us this far just fine. He replied that it was “dumb luck” and “taking off is easier than landing. I have to go take a leak. Wave at the people down there in Kansas, they like that.”
He had a point there…Kansas loved us. We were dispatched to bring esteemed Gish Gallop reporter-and Kansas native-Delaney Faris back to Earth (Nevada City, specifically). Mr. Faris had been on his way to work as a writer for The Daily Show on Comedy Central when things went wrong. He was mugged just before he got to the doors of Comedy Central. Cracked in the head like a canteloupe, he couldn’t remember who he was. He then did a couple stints in and out of Bellevue Mental Hospital. The second time, a little more certain of who he was. Lou and I had to confirm it.
Renting a car at La Guardia was more of a train wreck than my crappy landing. Lou took the wheel of our “rented” Chysler LeBaron, as he knew the way to Bellevue, and fired off down those streets like a rocket, yelling incoherent Cajun slurs at the pathetic New York drivers and cabbies we passed. I held on for dear life, grinning because I knew we were going to bring our boy Delaney home.
The patient identification wing of Bellevue is pretty complicated, lots of paperwork, but Lou and I are professionals. We saw the patient and it was Delaney Faris. Looking like a walking junk-bucket, but Delaney none the less…muttering something about tennis balls clogging creeks and blackberries grabbing old people…and a Dr. Finkelstein. He sure could do this funny dance, though. He’d sing “binga-binga-binga-binga-diddle” like a banjo sound and dance away.
We returned the appropriated LeBaron to somebody’s house and got back to the Super-Sooper plane when Lou smacked Delaney, friendly-like, and joked, “we ain’t never lost a man, not yet.” As the three of us boarded the plane, Lou flipped me the keys to the Super-Gish Gallop and said, “do it again, kid.”
Despite my ‘shit’ [thanks, Lou] landing in a bean field in Sacramento, we were able to bring Delaney Faris back home in time for Mr. Horace ‘Bored’ Georgeman’s upcoming untimely demise.