Monday, April 28, 2014

Job... Done

I was very happy yesterday to see a sketch I'd co-written staged at iO West. In the middle of last week. I'd read an item about a Yankees pitcher being caught again using pine tar on the mound. This is technically not allowed, although it's commonly done. The key is that you be discrete about it. That was the only thing that anyone had against the pitcher in question. He did not do anything to hide his crime. The pine tar was slathered on his neck, and quite visible. Worse, he was again doing it against the Red Sox.

I showed this story to a friend who's also into baseball. She happens to write for the show I submit to, and expressed a desire to write a sketch based on the incident, and invited me to collaborate with her on it. I was eager to do so, but found a day later that she hadn't managed to get a handle on it. She suggested that I could try if I wanted, and I did so. An hour or so later, I'd banged out what I considered to be a passable script. She agreed, and took her pass at it. It was largely an improvement on my sketch.

It was seemingly an uphill climb to get the piece into the show, as sports are a difficult sell for some reason. I guess it's believed that the comedy community has little interest. Against all odds, the sketch was accepted, and I had gotten my third sketch into the show. Maybe it was only half mine, but working with another person counts as socializing, right? I regard that as even better than sole credit, so I was happy.

It was necessary to locate some props and costume pieces for the show. A third draft of the sketch (which changed the ending again, for the better I believe) removed the need for some items, added the need for another and then that thing wasn't needed after all. The two things that were of any use I delivered during rehearsal, at which time I awkwardly hung around while waiting to see whether what I had would work for the director. I will have to avoid that in the future.

Finally the time came to see the thing, and it was really very good. It was a "desk piece", meaning an interview in the style of ones conducted on Saturday Night Live's Weekend Update. It was well performed, and every addition to or modification of my words only served to improve the piece, and what ultimately matters is how the piece serves the show. As this one was very nearly at the end of the show, it was primed to finish the show strong, and it did so. I was so happy that I stayed afterwards and braved the dangers of chatting with the rest of the show people. It was a good night.

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