back to the Black Table
  INCOMING! MAY 3, 2004.  


Thirteen million NPR listeners woke up with someone new this morning.



The news program "Morning Edition" has two new hosts, Steve Inskeep and Renee Montagne. They replace NPR veteran Bob Edwards, the man who anchored "Morning Edition" since its inception nearly 25 years ago. NPR said they wanted to "freshen" the show's image and booted Edwards to make way for new blood. This is sort of understandable, but the bigwigs could have at least


waited for the 25th anniversary of the show in a few months. Kind of tactless.

Because of the indie nature of NPR, none of the other talent has shied away from bringing this up on-air, essentially asking Edwards in interviews how it feels to get canned. Since Inskeep and Montagne are only interim hosts, it remains to be seen how "fresh" the show will get. Rest assured, worry not, there will still be plenty of seven-minute features on Amazonian tribes who speak only in clicks, but have incredible high-speed Internet access.



The Tribeca Film Festival takes a third stab at figuring out what its deal is this week.



The festival began in 2002 as a way to draw people downtown to a neighborhood shattered by September 11. Actor Robert De Niro and producer Jane Rosenthal created the festival and put the whole thing together in four months. It's still screening, but some in the film community wonder why.



It's not indie-fodder like Sundance and doesn't have the cachet of Cannes. About 200 films are included, from classics to new blockbusters, documentaries and indies. So what's the unifying theme -- "We love movies?" "You can't afford to live in Tribeca, but we'll let you see a couple movies there?" We have no idea, but do appreciate the fact that there's an outdoor screening of "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" on Friday night. Good times. Oh, and it's Black Table managing editor Aileen Gallagher's birthday today. (That's me.) Also good times.



It's Cinco de Mayo! And if you think there's any reason to give a crap about that holiday other than overindulging in Corona, you're


absolutely wrong.

Cinco de Mayo is not Mexican Independence Day. Sorry; there is nothing so lofty and worth celebrating as that. Instead, the fifth of May is the day the Mexicans defeated the French at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. It's mostly a regional holiday in Mexico … but another excuse to drink in America!

Please. It's springtime. Does anyone really need an excuse to crack open a beer and sit in the sun?


And it's not as if you have Mexican food on Cinco de Mayo or attend a parade. Just drink your Coronas and try to do that trick where you stick your thumb in the bottle to get the lime to the bottom without spilling it all over yourself.



After 10 years of going to that same stupid coffee shop, "Friends" will leave the air on tonight.



The Big Question: Ross and Rachel … will they get together for good? Our money is on yes, because you should at least give the audience a happy ending after 10 years of going back and forth on the question. But does anyone even care anymore? And why does no one on that show drink beer?

Pressing questions aside, it's been a good run. We get queasy thinking about what NBC will pop into the Thursday night lineup next, but considering Thursday is the new Friday and no one in the


sought-after 18-34 demographic has been around to watch Must See TV in years, it probably won't make a difference. But you can bet a lot of people will be watching this one.



Hey, bucko, it's Mother's Day on Sunday. So don't forget to call your mom. And send some flowers, too. Or a book. Or some movie theater gift certificates. Actually, it doesn't much matter what you


send. We've got this mom character all figured out.

What she really wants is your time. So in lieu of the sappy card, take her out for brunch. Or just go out for a walk and tell her what you've been up to. Heck, ask her what she's been up to: She might just surprise you.

Anyway, thanks to all the moms who put blankies over us when we fall asleep on the couch and make the best PB&Js in town. We probably don't give you enough credit to your face, but we tell our friends you're pretty great.




INCOMING! will run every Monday on The Black Table, starting, well, now. Writers will be rotated, and if you're interested in contributing one, email Will Leitch at