Question: Was there ever a short-lived TV comedy called No Soap Radio? It would have aired sometime during the 1980s. What was the premise? I was in elementary school at the time, so my memories are unclear. No one else I know remembers this show. — Jeff

Televisionary: No explanation needed for the less-than-total recall, Jeff. My memories from yesterday are unclear.

Still, I can tell you that the here-and-gone No Soap Radio ran on ABC's Thursday-night schedule from mid-April to mid-May of 1982. Starring Steve Guttenberg as the manager of a run-down Atlantic City hotel and featuring comedy names like Stuart Pankin and Edie McClurg, the show was a strange mix of visual humor and other-wordly non sequiturs. No surprise, since the title comes from the classic anti-joke about two animals in a bathtub — when I was a lad, it was two elephants, but I've heard variations with lions, apes, etc. — and one, after being asked to pass the soap, replies: "No soap, radio."

The idea is to tell the nonsensical joke to someone in front of friends who are in on the gag, then see if the victim pretends to get it. Unfortunately for those involved, not enough of the TV audience got it, so the show was, as you say, yanked before it ever really got started.