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Kramer, Jerry...and Dave

Posted by Anonymous Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Last night I randomly watched the David Letterman show, which I seldom watch thought it is one of my favorites. I was pleased to find that Jerry Seinfeld was the evenings guest, however surprised when the show took a somber turn. Apparently, over the past weekend, Michael Richards (Kramer), had lost his temper during a stand up show at a comedy club and went on a "racial rant" of sorts. Upon Jerry's request and Michael's deep remorse, Letterman allowed Michael to explain himself and apologize via satellite as a segment of Jerry's interview. It was actually quite moving, as for the Letterman show, it was not only a sacrifice of humor, but a sacrifice of time. (Sadly, it took the audience several minutes to stop laughing and understand that it wasn't a joke.) Richards was clearly quite disturbed by his own actions, and Jerry was honest and yet compassionate. Watch the interview here.
I recognize, via some conversation with Aaron and Andy, that much of this could all be a marketing ploy for Letterman and a rash cover for the sake of Richard's career. Nonetheless, I was pleased that it happened.
Later, I was thinking about the seriousness of those few moments, seemingly so out of place on a late night comedy show. And I remembered several years ago when Dave Letterman had just recovered from a quintuple bypass surgery, and on his returning show, fighting back tears, thanked his family and friends and doctors. It was so unexpected coming from a personality such as his, yet still so refreshing.
To top it all off, I also saw that insurance commercial with "Half an acre" by Hem playing in the background--a series of "pay it forward" situations--a chain of random acts of kindness. It gets me every time. :) Happy Thanksgiving.