The Albin Michel bookstore was ready for Gerald Shea’s book signing event on boulevard St Germain. Guests were arriving, the white wine was chilled, books were piled up on a tidy table. But the author was nowhere to be seen. He had been kept at Canal Plus television, for the taping of a top Saturday night broadcast with Thierry Ardisson! where he sang “Oh what a beautiful morning” fem the musical Oklahoma and imitated President Kennedy, live.