Sunday, July 27, 2008

almost a chicken and waffle

It was only my third time inside a Waffle House yesterday. When I first moved here, I went to the Waffle House on Papermill Drive to record a segment about what belongs on top of grits. My radio partner thought it was sacrilege that I put sugar on my grits.

My first experience with the House was in Tulsa many years ago. Don & Mike had planned on doing a live broadcast in front of Oral Roberts University on the day that Oral had set as a fund raising deadline. If he didn't get the cash, the Lord was going to call him home. Back in those days we would rent a big satellite truck for remotes from other cities. We were going to set up the truck in the parking lot of our hotel, right across the street from ORU. Our permission was revoked when the hotel manager figured out what we were planning. We were told that Oral also owned the hotel's land and virtually the whole neighborhood. Without a place to put the truck, we ended up calling in to the studio from various pay phones (remember those?) around Tulsa. I used a phone at a Waffle House for my live report.

My friend Sandy Weaver Carman and her husband were passing through town yesterday, so we arranged to meet for breakfast. Before heading out to our meeting, we tried to figure out how to make it sound like we were going to a fancy restaurant, similar to the way Target is often pronounced with a French accent. I asked my son how to say Waffle House in Spanish. He came up with "Casa de Indecisión."

It was great to see Sandy and her husband again. It's been a few years since we last visited her at a canine agility event near Atlanta. My wife and I were also happy to see her dog Billy who had come along for the ride. Once we were settled into the booth, we talked about Sandy's new voiceover business, my improv group, some former co-workers and radio in general. I would have liked to chat a lot longer but I stopped myself from bringing up new topics because I knew that they had to get on the road. Sandy's husband seemed very curious about improv. He has never seen "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" so I couldn't use that as a reference point. Maybe he can watch one of our YouTube videos.

For breakfast, I ordered one egg and split a waffle with my wife. I should have taken the extra calories and had the regular syrup. The sugar-free stuff tasted nasty to me. Sandy and her husband asked if I was sure I didn't want to eat anything more. After all, they said, it didn't look like I needed to lose any weight. I said that I was only trying to not gain it back. They must not remember how big I was three years ago, like in these before photos. Here's another one, taken while on a trip to Sandy's part of the world. That's me on the right, smart aleck.

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