Living life between the barrel staves in Bourbon Country

Real Time blogging during “No Reservations – Burning Questions” tonight at 10pm EDT

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I fell into a burning ring of fire
I went down, down, down
And the flame went higher
And it burns, burns, burns
The ring of fire

“Ring of Fire” by Johnny Cash

Ah yes, burning questions. I had a friend in the Marine Corps once come back from leave with a bad case of those, but hey that’s what penicillin’s for, right?

Tonight’s show is based, God forbid, on a Travel Channel online poll.  Tony answers the top questions from viewers, complete with illustrative scenes gleaned from previous episodes.  Now clip shows can be scary enough (anyone remember the NR Labor Day Special from last year?) Shudder.  I’m already incredulous going in, but the No Reservation’s Facebook page promises much hilarity and a Zamir highlight reel, so maybe it will all work out in the end.  I mean, Facebook wouldn’t lie.  Would it? 

9:55pm EDT

No Reservations – The Drinking Game

You know, on a clip show, it’s kind of difficult to determine in advance what we’re in store for.  So for tonight, let’s forego the games, sit back with your favorite evening libation, and enjoy the show.  Cheers.

10:10pm EDT

Question #1: Have you ever gotten sick from food you’ve eaten? 

One word – Namibia.  Followed by three other words – wart hog anus.  Nuff said.

Question #2: How do you deal with tragedies and mishaps?

Lesson to learn here is when all else fails, throw an impromtu beach barbecue.  In Chile no less.  That’s what I do.  And always pack extra underwear during the threat of an air traffic controllers strike. 

Clip shows.  Yeah.

10:20pm EDT

Question #3: Has anyone ever gotten hurt on the show?

Insect related mishaps, subcutaneous larva – but it’s the roller derby scene that makes the cut.  Being somewhat short-listed for possible shoulder surgery at the moment, I am sympathetic to this scene.  Actually, it hurts me to watch this.

You know, the Uzbekistan massage scene is really, really funny.  But after that, I would have sought out revenge on Zamir as well.

Question #4: How do you treat the crew? 

NR has, hands down, one of the best film and production currently at work on television.  The quality of the shows is testament to that.  I mean just compare it to anything, anything else on TV.  And watching Tony berate the crew is good, tongue in cheek fun.  I have little doubt that he is one butt busting tough SOB to work for, but I don’t think I would ever question his affection for this crew. 

Questions #5: Who dresses you?

I think the answer is obvious.  Tony dresses Tony.  Back in black.

 10:35pm EDT

Question #6: Why Zamir?

Truthfully, every successful TV variety show has the recurring comedic character, the foil, to the show’s host or star.  And let’s face it, Zamir is usually more sober than Ed McMahon ever was.  Except of course, in Romania.  The sad part is, the NR Romania episode had more to do with Dracula than some of the later movies from Hammer Studios starring Christopher Lee.  Hey, it’s almost Halloween.  Time to break out of the decorations.  Maybe Zamir can get me a deal on some Romania relics.

 10:45pm EDT

Question #7: What’s your favorite animal?  To eat of course.  Actually your least favorite is probably more interesting.  Tell us about that.

Armadillo on the half shell is not making it onto the Anthony Bourdain commemorative Les Halles dinner menu.  Neither will Ghana Rat.

Question #8: Do you do your own stunts?

I think the better question is, “Which stunts weren’t planned”, like the New Zealand 4 wheeler incident or the Sicilian cliff jump.

 Hmm, clip shows.  Where did Zamir disappear too?

10:55pm EDT

Question #9: How you get celebrities on your show?

Most celebrities have something they own that they want to promote, so why wouldn’t they appear on a show broadcast worldwide to millions of fans?   Either that or Tony’s friends with them, like the Chef’s Club.  One of my favorite gags is still the canoli scene with Mario Batali.  Long live the Godfather.  Or, they could be raving megalomaniacs.  But hey, I happen to love Ted Nugent anyway.   Anyone that has the audacity to write a cookbook called “Kill It and Grill It” will always be one of my heroes.  I’m still waiting for Ted’s follow-up book to come out aimed at vegetarians, “Pick It and Stick It”.  Maybe the anti-vegan thing was why he and Tony bonded so well.

Question #10: How do you achieve the production quality of your show?

Camera time for the computer graphics guy – does anyone still think he doesn’t love his crew? 

Ok, I still don’t like clip shows, and over the last couple of weeks this real time blogging has started to seem like the Star Trek movie franchise – only every other one is good.   But would I watch No Reservations – The Making of Documentary?  Absolutely, as long as Zamir gets a cameo.   However, I have the strange feeling that at some point next season we’ll have the episode featuring the crew, with Tony no where in sight.  Hey, it will still be better than the Labor Day Special.

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