Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Al Franken: The Happy Warrior


Last November, Al Franken had this great idea for a sketch. Bits still come to him, unbidden, all of these years after Saturday Night Live. He doesn't do anything with them. At this stage in his life, as a U.S. senator representing his home state of Minnesota, passing along a freebie to one of his friends in show business would leave Franken with little control over the final outcome. ("Many a slip 'twixt cup and lip," as one of his favorite sayings goes.) Anyway, the idea for the bit came after Donald Trump's first postelection visit to the White House – that fleeting moment when, after meeting with Barack Obama, Trump seemed uncharacteristically humbled by the awesomeness of his new responsibility, and perhaps even spooked enough to lean on his predecessor for advice.

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