Possums, one of the things we are looking forward to in the new season of Top Chef is the return of judge Ted Allen, a glitter-bespattered, cannibal gayrdian angel to this blog (and pictured here with his boyfriend, Barry Rice). (Ted, possum, we had no idea he looked like that; who can blame you for being a Rice queen?)
However, we have not posted this photo merely to publicize our very gay flouting of the Tenth Commandment (“Thou shalt not covet… thy neighbor’s [ahem] wife, nor his [ahem] manservant,… nor his [ahem] ass…” Exodus 20:17).
No, possums. We have posted this photo as Exhibit A to prove that, notwithstanding his protestations of ignorance, Ted Allen is a bear chaser.
The admittedly farfetched importance of this fact will become apparent all too quickly.
(Oh, and by the by, possums, does Barry Rice remind you of any other shaven-headed, barrel-chested, fortyish man with a penchant for dark suits and unbuttoned shirts?)
What with his being our cannibal gayrdian angel, we took umbrage on Ted’s behalf when we read this interview with Tom Colicchio. When asked, “Who is the most enjoyable judge to have sort of by your side at the judging table?” Tom replied, “I’m always more comfortable when Gail [Simmons] is on my left. I mean, she’s not a guest. I know I didn’t answer the question. But that’s when I’m most comfortable.”
Alright, fair enough. But then, when asked, “Will Ted [Allen] and Gail [Simmons] ever be at the judging table at the same time?” Tom replied, “I think the world of both of them. I just - I like it when Gail is on my left and Padma [Lakshmi] is on my right. It’s a nice little sandwich I have going there.”
Ah, Tom, spoken like the creator of sandwich shop ‘wichcraft. But if that sandwich has a name, it is surely ‘Wichful Thinking. (A Gail-Padma sandwich wouldn’t even need meat; the Cubans, after all, refer to lesbian sex as a “pan con pan” (bread with bread). Not every midnight (medianoche) has to have a pickle.).
But back to our umbrage. Tom, Tom, Tom, we didn’t think it possible, but is there just the teeniest implication that you’re uncomfortable when Ted is sitting at your left? Is there a soupçon of gay panic in the rhetorical mayonnaise that binds that sandwich? Or have we completely lost our minds and given in to our most conspiratorial urges? Wait, don’t answer that.
Tom, just because Ted is a bear chaser and you look like his boyfriend doesn’t mean he’s going to cop a feel. There’ll be no wire hangers and no soap-dropping at the judges’ table. Fear not.
And anyway, Tom, why won’t you be one of Teddy’s bears? Is it because Teddy once said he’d “like to see you cooking in stilettos and a teddy?” Or is it because Ted once publicly declined to eat you? And what, pray tell, is wrong with a Manwich? After all, even with Gail and Padma, a sandwich is a sandwich, but a Manwich is a meal.