Leave it to Jerry Seinfeld to create something fresh and funny about three things you don't normally think of together. His Internet show, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, is a well-deserved hit, and the second season features such luminaries as Sarah Silverman, David Letterman, and Don Rickles. Each short episode is a lighthearted attempt to answer a serious question: what makes something funny?
But why should stand-up comics be the only group of people who get to wax philosophical about their work? I propose the following spin-offs, which will do for their respective fields what Seinfeld's new series does for comedy.
1. PHILOSOPHERS IN FLOTILLAS GETTING FALAFEL
Vegetarian ethicists, epistemologists, and metaphysicians debate the objectivity of moral statements, the necessary and sufficient conditions for knowledge, and the nature of being via loudspeakers mounted on the sides of their small warships.
2. SCHOLARS ON SKATEBOARDS GETTING SCRAPPLE
Academicians from Philadelphia-area universities who share a love of this Pennsylvania Dutch delicacy complain about the challenges of living a life of the mind as they bust some amazing moves on half-pipes and concrete slopes along the Schuylkill River.
3. TOUGH GUYS ON TRAINS GETTING TEA
Defensive linemen, Marine drill sergeants, wise guys, and jackhammer operators reveal a softer side of themselves as they dish the dirt over high tea on the Orient Express.
4. SCOTSMEN ON SCOOTERS GETTING SNACKS
Men in kilts explore the nuances of dressing traditionally in a non-traditional world as they dodge pets and pedestrians on their self-propelled aluminum vehicles.
5. SURGEONS IN SUBWAYS GETTING SOUP
Eighteen-hour days on your feet in windowless operating rooms are challenging in more ways than one, as we'll learn from New York's leading cardiothoracic physicians riding the F train to the Lower East Side's few remaining delis.
6. TOTS ON TRICYCLES THROWING TANTRUMS
Adults aren't the only ones with a desire to unburden themselves; children have this need, too. The kids in this show have a lot to bemoan--and boy do they do it loudly--as they furiously peddle around their neighborhoods and pop wheelies. Contains language that may be offensive to some.
7. CUSTOMS AGENTS IN GO KARTS GETTING KUGEL
The men and women who protect our country from contraband relieve the stress of their thankless jobs by motoring downtown for a heapin' helpin' of this tasty Jewish noodle dish.
8. PODIATRISTS IN PEDICABS GETTING PIZZA
Boils, bunyons, and blisters get the talk-show treatment as the dedicated foot specialists who heal these conditions kick back in pedicabs and swap war stories over slices and sodas.
9. BANKERS IN BOATS GETTING BLINTZES
You don't have to be Jewish to love a good blintz, but you do have to be a financial services professional with a sweet tooth and an axe to grind if you want to be on this show.
10. CHESS PLAYERS IN CHARIOTS GETTING CHEESESTEAKS
Ten Russian and American grandmasters take the ancient Roman prototype of an automobile to their favorite diners, where they argue about the pros and cons of the Clemenz Opening, Grob's Attack, and other classic strategies in the Game of Kings.
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