As many of you know, I put my Peabody Award Nominated-series Hate By Numbers™ on hiatus a few months ago so I could pursue my screenplay. Since that time, many of my Facebook friends have been hounding me with one question: “G-Stone, what’s your e-mail address? I need to send you pictures of myself in fishnets.”
But a few of them have also asked about the screenplay. The truth is, it’s not going that well. Although I drafted what I believed to be a timely satirical tale about one man’s amusing struggles against corporate America, my agent felt it was just “too smart” for Hollywood. Actually, he described it as “really not funny,” but I think if you’d seen his face, you’d be able to tell “too smart” is what he meant (I’m assuming here. I actually just got his comments scrawled across the title page when he mailed the script back to me).
So I’d pretty much given up hope of selling it when my agent called me last week with an idea:
“Gladstone!” he screamed. “Why don’t you see if that funny columnist over at Cracked.com could help fix up your screenplay?”
“Oh, Ian Cooper?” I asked. “I’d love to, but he doesn’t work here anymore.”
“No, no. The other one.”
“Oh, Ross Wolinsky! Yeah, he’s great, but he’s on sabbatical.”
“Oh, that’s too bad,” he said. “Well, why don’t you take a shot with whoever’s left over there?”
I must confess that, initially, I hated the idea. I hadn’t tried collaborating with someone from Cracked since I wrote that Valentines Day skit with Those Aren’t Muskets. I guess it turned out funny enough, but every time I shot down one of Swaim’s punchlines he would cry for hours until I stroked his hair and swore to him that one day he’d have a clip-based show on Cracked even more popular than Hate By Numbers™. But in this economy, money is money, and if collaborating with my intellectual and comedic inferiors meant getting paid for a script well then, hey, I was up for it.
So last week, I called an emergency meeting at the Cracked House. Everyone was there on time, but only because of the false incentives I had provided: I told Jack O’Brien that the meeting was a rave where prizes would be given out to the partygoer who took the most X. I told Swaim the meeting was a tutorial on hairstyles that do NOT make you look like an 18th Century English lesbian. I told Dan O’Brien that I was giving a lecture on Dan O’Brien. And I told Robert Brockway that I was giving a lecture on Dan O’Brien (Chris Bucholz wasn't invited. Not because he isn’t nice or funny, but because I’m still not convinced “being Canadian” is not contagious).
“OK, Gentlemen,” I began. “First, I have some bad news. I lied about what we’re here to discuss. I actually just wanted your help writing a movie. Before each of you is an excerpt from my script Working Man Triumphant -- my break out comedic performance where I play a man done wrong by the system. In this scene, our protagonist --me-- is laid off by his uncaring boss, so he decides to seek revenge by opening up a rival business. Take a look.”
Everyone started thumbing though the pages, except Dan O’Brien who rolled them up into a tube and stuck it in his fly.
“Look,” he said. "Coming at ya! Get it?"
"Yes, Dan," I said. "You've made a penis out of my script. Very clever.""Not just," he protested. "I also made a pun. Coming at ya? Get it?" "Good stuff, DOB," Jack said, as he downed some X. "Remember that for the site." "Damn it, Jack," I yelled. "Can you stay focused? I asked you here to get your ideas on my script, not encourage Dan to make penises out of things. It's not like he needs encouragement anyway. Do you NOT remember how he Photoshopped the Cracked Christmas cards last year?"
"Well, I'm sorry Gladstone," Jack mumbled, with tears starting to form in his spinning eyes. "It's just that my forte is really not writing. It's titling things. So I looked at this scene and I'm thinking instead of
--(this post is dedicated to Gemineye the Great)