Production meeting: two weeks to showtime
The production team were sitting at the table throwing around ideas for the next show.
‘We should do something good’, said Pete. ‘Ratings are down and we need to pick up before the network reviews our slot next month.’
‘What? Like a story about nuns or something?’ asked Angela.
‘No,’ said Pete. ‘Anyway we did nuns last year.’
‘So what are you saying? Nuns are so last year we can’t do them again?’
‘Let’s just get a bit of clear water between that film and another nun special,’ he said.
‘Which film?,’ asked Angela.
‘Oh you know the one,’ he replied, ‘the one with the nuns.’
‘Something with kids, then?’ suggested Angela, ‘people love kids’
‘Correction,’ piped up Julie, ‘People love their own kids. If it isn’t kids doing mistakes and looking cute, it won’t make a damn difference to the ratings, and we don’t have time to set that up. We need something quick and easy.’
The door opened.
‘Hey hey hey! How are we going?’ Tommy, host of the show came bounding in.
‘Great, Tommy. We were just thinking of some ideas for the next show,’ said Pete.
‘That sounds, great,’ said Tommy. ‘Hey, I was having lunch with BJ the other day – you know one of the sponsor guys from Instapocket.’
‘Instapocket?’ asked Angela, ‘Who are they?’
‘Ah they’re a company that does, you know instant pockets, you can velcro them on to clothes when you need them.’
‘What kind of idiot needs an instant pocket?’ asked Julie.
‘Doesn’t matter,’ said Tommy, ‘anyway, they are keen to do something with us on air, you know maybe donate free pockets and maybe a bit of cash – like on one of those giant cheques? We would just need to come up with someone to win the prize. What do you think?’
‘Like a talent show?’ asked Angela
‘A talent show is going to be way too much work,’ warned Julie, ‘anyway they are everywhere right now. Who needs another talent show?’
‘Look,’ said Tommy, ‘The sponsor has money, he wants to give it away, let’s not upset him. All I need is a reason to give someone a cheque for, say, five hundred bucks. It’s not rocket science. We find someone, give them a cheque. The sponsor is happy, the winner is happy, the network is happy because everyone likes a winner and I get to look like Oprah Winfrey.’
‘Oprah Winfrey is a black woman, Tommy, ‘ said Julie.
Tommy moved towards the door, ‘Not rocket science!’ he repeated as he left.
‘What was that about?’ asked Angela.
‘BJ is Tommy’s brother-in-law,’ said Julie.
‘So?’ asked Pete.
‘So,’ explained Julie, ‘BJ is the brother of Tommy’s wife, and Tommy’s wife is not happy with Tommy because of that thing that happened with him and Trishla in make-up.’
‘Oh! That thing,’ said Angela.
‘What thing?’ asked Pete.
‘Well nothing was ever proved,’ continued Julie, ‘but the word was that Trishla was being very friendly with Tommy, VERY friendly. Apparently someone busted in to the dressing room and caught her performing, how can I put this, an act of kindness towards Tommy.’
‘Oh dear god,’ said Angela, ‘that is too much information.’
Julie nodded, ‘So Tommy is trying to get back in his wife’s good books by being nice to her brother and getting him and his stupid pockets on TV.’
‘It is a bit like that film, isn’t it?’ said Pete, ‘the one where the favour gets paid forward each time.’
‘Which film is that?’ asked Angela. ‘Pretty Woman?’
‘Pay It Forward.’ said Pete, ignoring her. ‘ Now call me a genius, but I think I just had an idea for the special.’
‘Please tell me you are not going to suggest making over Trishla the make-up girl,’ said Julie.
‘Nope’, said Pete, ‘It will be a show about rewarding a good deed,’ he said. ‘It’s perfect. We can call it An Act of Kindness.’
TO BE CONTINUED…