“And How!”

22 November 1997
[Foley's enjoyment of the pizza pie speaks for itself.] Written by Rupert Holmes.

Directed by Julian Petrillo.

Special Thanks to Laura Hayden.
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"Drums Along the Monongahela." This show will ensure I never forget that name, though I don't know if I'll ever learn to spell it without looking it up!

Eugenia's adventurous exploration inspired me to do a little searching around the web for pizza history. About every page I found had a different story, but there was some agreement. It appears that the first pizza shop in America didn't open until the turn of the century. There was very little spread of pizza pies until the 1930's but it was still primarily on the East Coast. After WWII, when servicemen returned with their experiences with European food, pizza began it's phenomenal growth. Interestingly, pizzeria is an American word according to my unabridged dictionary (with an Italianized version being pizzery). And that's the WENN word of the week!

Betty needs Scott to pick up the "Strange Loner" so she nabs him as he and Mackie are walking down the hall. Scott to Mackie with confidence: "You'd better go to lunch without me; I may be awhile." Mackie in mock support, thumb raised: "Gotcha." Then a jeering "Oh, Please! Get real." type of exhalation, "pfhewwt."

The next scene shows Betty asserting herself ("Go, Betty!"). Betty's shown a lot of growth from the small town, mid-western wallflower to an assertive, responsible adult. She's learned that different people need to be motivated in different ways. As she pointed out earlier in the episode, Scott's still very boy-like and often needs a more directive style of leadership to get his attention.

And among her arsenals to get attention are her many secrets. Since Gertie got it wrong about Scott not having met Victor in her play (since he had met Victor briefly in a pub), we suspected that maybe she didn't know everything about Scott's sordid entry into WENN-life and was probably on a fishing expedition. Now we find out that Gertie doesn't know (for sure) about the falsified letter. Gertie was just making a speculation based on the conversation between Betty, Tom and herself in "Who's Scott Sherwood?" (for the full version, see http://www.rememberwenn.org/wennlost.htm#whoscott). I think the fact that Scott was deluding sponsors about the fake marriages to abscond with the funds is also not common knowledge. Secrets, secrets, secrets.

The drunken fool of a "star" then ferments into the station followed shortly by Joseph "Rondo" Greyhawk, the Shawnee who plays the Strange Loner's sidekick. The situation with Greyhawk brings to mind George Smith, the black actor from "The Emperor Smith." However, there is a marked difference between the two minorities. Blacks make up a much larger part of the population and our WENN members have had far more chance to interact with black people, even if it was only as waiters at The Buttery. It's quite possible that no one at WENN had ever met an American Indian before.

With no experience and little knowledge to guide them, other than that gleamed from the massively popular "Westerns", our cast members do not come out as shining as they did in "The Emperor Smith." As bad as Gertie behaves, Hilary acts as if she could have been writing the stereotypical scripts for the "Strange Loner." And this after the development throughout the season of Hilary as a very bright person (constant displays of math and science.) How could a person so educated behave so ignorantly?

An embarrassing moment in my past springs to mind. My hometown's schools were integrated in 1969 as I entered the 4th grade so I was accustomed to being around black people. And I was already despising racism before that (the color of someone's skin is about the most useless information I can have about someone). However, at basic training many years later, there were two guys in our "sister flight" who were Asian Americans. Once, during a break, I was talking with one of them out on the drill pad when I found myself starting to stare at his epicanthic fold (the skin fold in the inner corner of the eye that gives oriental eyes a characteristic almond shape). Except for pictures, I had never seen a person of Eastern descent up close; this was my first time to view this characteristic difference (Eskimoes also have an epicanthic fold). This was something new and unfamiliar that stirred my human curiosity but I immediately became conscious of what I was starting to do and was most annoyed at myself. Me, wanting to stare at someone's different racial appearance! An important lesson in how we may surprise ourselves when we deal with new situations we've only mentally walked through.

Greyhawk explains the origin of the "Indian" appellation was an English mistranslation of two Spanish words. Betty replies that she "thought it was all Christopher Columbus' fault." Funny, so did I.

It's been awhile since I've seen anyone squirm as much as Greyhawk did when Betty left him alone with Hilary!

The kid who won the prize of watching the Strange Loner unmask is introduced to Scott who gives the kid the old fake handshake tease. A look of disgust crosses the kid's face as he wipes his hand off on his vest as if he had touched something repulsive. I can almost hear the kid think, "Adults! Sheesh! They're more juvenile than me and I'm a kid!" Then Scott flashes a raised eyebrow (almost looking a little like Clark Gable) as he notices the boy wiping his hand. The scene had a nice old-time film touch, I thought.

Hilary, among the reporters, overhears the real purpose of the meeting promised to Greyhawk to discuss changes in his character. Thanks to a surprising lack of attendance by network executives, Betty and Joseph Greyhawk revise the script of the Strange Loner's unmasking and broadcast to a startled audience that he was a Native American all along!

In the episode's tag, we're treated to more clever word play as Scott requests Betty not to "play Iroquois [coy]" with him. When he asks to bury the hatchet she begins suggesting body locations for the burial. However, as in last week's tag, there's playfulness in their banter.

And a nice tag to the end credits is the "special thanks to Laura Hayden".

NOTE:A big thumbs up (all support, no mock) towards Laura

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