Earlier this week, a CNN press release for Larry King Live promised that Jerry Seinfeld would reveal "one of Hollywood's best kept secrets" on Thursday night's show. This morning, the Today show has hinted that Seinfeld's revelation concerns the identity of letter-writer Ted L. Nancy, with whom Seinfeld has published a few books, including a new collection Seinfeld will be promoting Friday on NBC's Today show.
Unlikely, especially since NBC's online piece promoting Seinfeld's appearance suggests the comedian has been writing under the name Ted L. Nancy the whole time. It notes that Seinfeld wrote in the forward to the most recent collection, All New Letters from a Nut:
‚ÄúI can conceal the secret no longer. I can‚Äôt live with myself.‚Äù
Personally, I'm rooting for Seinfeld to announce that Ted L. Nancy actually is Don Novello. You may remember Novello, now 67, as the Saturday Night Live writer who also created and inhabited the character Father Guido Sarducci. But another of Novello's creations in the 1970s was Lazlo Toth, who a generation before Ted L. Nancy, wrote letters to unsuspecting business owners, politicians and others, from Presidents Nixon and Ford to McDonald's Ray Kroc. Here is a link to part of Lazlo Toth's correspondence with McDonald's in 1974. Preview more of The Lazlo Letters via Google Books. It's great stuff. And it was all done more than two decades before Jerry Seinfeld introduced the world to Ted L. Nancy.
Check out the books for yourself:
Not that there's anything wrong with a Seinfeld writing a book that's similar to another book. Right, Mrs. Seinfeld?