Telly comes to Ernie's pretend tea party.
Yay, it's Telly! I love Telly!
I have a theory that Telly Monster is to Sesame Street what Steve Buscemi is to movies: he shows up fairly often, always giving a solid performance, and you enjoy him while he's right in front of your face, but you tend to forget about him once he's out of your direct line of vision. Unlike Steve Buscemi, who in recent years has gotten some significant recognition for his television work, Telly just doesn't get enough respect. He's probably the most underrated, underappreciated Sesame Street Muppet...and I, for one, think it's a darn shame.
Anyway, about the sketch. Even if one didn't notice it was Steve Whitmire performing Ernie, one could tell that it's a more recent sketch because of Ernie's mention of a cell phone. It's funny, just as kids today would probably be amused/bemused/confused by the presence of "old-fashioned" telephones in Bert & Ernie's apartment, so does it seem weirdly incongruous to me to hear Ernie talking about cell phones, because my concept of him is so strongly rooted in the '80s. (Apparently this sketch is from the year 2000, by the way.)
If I were Telly, which is to say if I were cripplingly neurotic, I would suspect that Ernie just made up some excuse to leave the tea party so that he wouldn't have to play with me. I'm not saying that's what's happening here; I'm just saying that if I were Telly, that's what I would THINK was happening.