This week, comedy legend Carl Reiner died at the age of 98. It’s a loss that has prompted many, many fond remembrances from friends, colleagues, and fans, which collectively paint a picture of a kind, generous, and very funny man.
But among all those lovely stories and sentiments, there may be none more delightful and surprising than this Twitter thread, which tells a thoroughly charming story about Reiner and beef Stroganoff. It has much to say about family, memory, generosity, and whether or not the word ‘Stroganoff’ or ‘sauerbraten’ is funnier. It is a perfect example of what occasionally makes Twitter a lovely place and not just a hellsite.
It comes from comics writer Matthew Rosenberg, a writer who was inspired by writers who were inspired by writers, and it begins thus:
It did indeed bring other people joy. The thread is worth reading in full—Rosenberg’s telling, even in 240 character bursts, is warm, joyful, and sad—but we’ll jump to the bit when the food enters the picture as an enticement for you to click through.
The story takes a turn for the even more delightful when Rosenberg’s father gets the chance to meet Reiner at a book signing, asks him which it was (Reiner doesn’t remember) and hands the man who inspired him to be a writer a letter saying as much. Guess where it’s going from there and you’ll probably fall far short:
If that doesn’t entice you to read on, what on earth will? Here’s the big finish:
There’s yet another surprise after that, one we’ll leave for you to discover (so you can give Rosenberg’s charming thread a like or two). The point is this: whether he was directing The Jerk, changing the TV landscape, working with Brooks and Caesar, or reciting Shakespeare, Reiner was a gem.