Note: Charlie Rose is a talk show host who speaks with notables from around the globe in a casual across-the-table setting that floats mysteriously in a formless black void. Everybody knows that. But what “viewers like you” don’t know is that America’s most respected talk-show host (eat it, King!) isn’t the cool and calculated droid that you read about in the brochure. Charlie Rose is a flesh-and-blood human being – or at least he is now – a well-dressed velveteen rabbit stung all too often by those prickly barbs that grow on the Tree of Life, devouring and sustaining it at once. Here, by virtue of a gutsy act of investigative journalism, are select excerpts from transcripts of Charlie Rose’s “Lost Epsiodes”.
December 15, 1983: Charlie Rose Interviews Yogurt
Charlie Rose: How does it feel to have that taste that lingers on people’s tongues- smooth, creamy, almost tart?
Cup of Yogurt: [silence]
CR: You go well with fruit, or with wheat germ- what’s your preparation for working with those two? What does yogurt say to himself when he gets up in the morning?
CR: You come raging like the Mongol hordes who brought you onto this earth, raging out of the East, unrelenting.
CR: Can I eat you?
CR: I’ll ask you one more time. Now, mind you I’m going to take your silence for a yes.
CR: [thuds; lapping, spooning, slurping sounds; groaning; incoherent mumbling]
April 8, 1993: Charlie Rose Interviews Charles Grodin
Charlie Rose: Charles, lemme ask you a question-
Charles Grodin: Lemme ask you something-
CR: Did you just ask me a question?
CG: Lemme tell you something Charlie-
CR: So. Charles. Question-
CG: What was that?
CG: Let me try to make some things clear-
CR: Here’s something that’s been on my mind lately about Charles Grodin-
June 30, 1979: Charlie Rose Interviews a Post-Apocalyptic Bike Gang Member
Charlie Rose: What does this mean, “the desert is your paradise, so who needs hell?”
Post-Apocalyptic Bike Gang Member: Charlie, I made that statement at a henchmen’s meeting atop a rocky outcropping, overlooking a peaceful, defenseless settlement. I wanted to capture the elation that comes from acting without the constraints of morality or law, but at the same time qualify that feeling by acknowledging the acute pain, the endless struggle for survival that I’m faced with every day. Is there a part of me that wants to reach out to my victims as brothers? The tragedy of it, Charlie, the real crux of that quote of mine you just read, is that I’ll probably never find out.
CR: That peaceful, defenseless settlement- what happened next?
PABGM: After the Burning of the Sky, the fire-sickness crept into almost all of the stored food supply, poisoning even the handful of survivors. Once in a while, though, deposits of clean food would be discovered in a vault inside a cave, or there would be a harvest of crops on the scattered patches of clean soil. We heard that this settlement fed itself from one of those clean stockpiles. The gang I belong to- we were going to encircle the settlement, kill all of the inhabitants and maybe eat them, and then make off with the food.
CR: But something got in the way.
PABGM: That’s right Charlie- a lone champion of justice and humanity managed to organize the townspeople to defend themselves. Turns out their greatest weapon was their heart, I guess, and they were pretty determined. So we decided to just fuck it and drew a lottery to see which of the gang would get eaten.
August 20, 1997: Charlie Rose Moderates a Panel Discussion between Jughead, Screech Powell, Tonto, Odie, Dr. Gonzo, Enkidu, and Chunk.
Charlie Rose: This evening we’re going to be talking to Jughead, Screech Powell, Tonto, Odie, Dr. Gonzo, Enkidu, and Chunk about the hardships and rewards of the main-character lifestyle. All of these protagonists…..what? WHO THE FUCK BROUGHT THESE PEOPLE IN!?
MARCH 8, 1967: Charlie Rose Interviews The Beatles
Charlie Rose: I hear you’ve just returned from an extended stay in India.
John Lennon: It was extended, until it ended.
George Harrison: A trip indeed.
Paul McCartney: I’d say.
GH: I’d say it again.
PM: Then go right ahead, love.
GH: A trip indeed.
Ringo Starr: There goes George, always repeating himself.
JL: Better than repeating someone else.
PM: Someone Else, eh? He’s not got much to say anyways.
RS: Though I heard his sonnets are rather good.