Sdtrk: ‘Julia’s song’ by Orchestral manoeuvres in the dark
As you may recall me mentioning in the last post, Sidore and I were due to appear on the chat show ‘Dr Drew on Call’ tonight, but, well, we didn’t. Now before you toss back that fistful of pills and wash it down with that glass of ammonia, let me explain what occurred, then you can top yourself. Sound fair?
Late last month, Bill, one of the show’s producers, contacted me about making an appearance. I said yes, and weeks later, I was put through to another programme producer by the name of Emily. She did a preliminary interview with me over the phone yesterday for a good half hour, which seemed to go reasonably well, and we aimed for shooting round 8pm EST. Now, I don’t know if he does this with all of his guests, but Dr Drew seems to… not really have his guests in the same studio with them; it’s all video feeds, from what I’ve seen. Kinda like Space Ghost Coast to Coast, but with much less Moltar. In any event, the show was going to be live, which would’ve been interesting, to say the least. With the exception of the fantastic symposium I was part of earlier this year, I don’t really do ‘live’. I’m not completely averse to it, but I’m much more of a studio musician than an onstage performer. But that’s just me.
We were ostensibly set: the Missus and I would point our laptop webcam at ourselves sat on the Deafening silence Plus loveseat, and answer questions put to us by Dr Drew and anyone mischievous enough to call in. Yes, people can call in. Yes, this is why I’m not keen on live telly venues. You only live once, though, so hey. We were due to test the Skype connection and lighting at 8pm EST, and go live at 9. I’d left work at 4 today — yes, I still have to write about New Job, but I keep getting distracted — and on the way there, Emily called me, and asked me to sign the release forms she’d Emailed me when I got home. Standard release form fumfuh, really. Sure, I told her, then popped round to my local sushi place, where the chef made three gigantic onigiri for me for my birthday. One of them was enough to fill me up for hours, so naturally, I ate two, and was practically rendered immobile.
Before gorging on rice, seaweed, and eel, however, I got Sidore dressed; she elected to wear that black A-line shift dress from the Sixties that I bought her for our first ‘My Strange Addiction’ segment, and was looking her usual delectable self. Then I sat down to eat, and have a look at the release form. Standard release form fumfuh… o, wait. Hmmm.
3. [..] The Program may include other guests and participants, surprises, statements, or commentary that I find private, hurtful, or embarrassing. Other persons or guests may appear on the Program, with or without my advance knowledge.
5. I understand that while participating on the Program, and as a result of participating in the Program, I may be ridiculed or embarrassed. I understand that nothing that I say in connection with the Program will be off the record, that my identity will not be concealed, and that anyone may see my appearance on the Program and learn private and confidential information about me.
…right. It was at that point I rang Emily, leaving a message on her voicemail that I wasn’t keen on what I was seeing.
Let me pause the narrative for a bit here to explain: there’s a certain level of stupidity that I’ll tolerate from bog-standard American television. What this means is that if you’re a programme producer, and you make an enquiry with me, I’ll do a bit of research as to your show’s host, the kind of content you traffic in, the general demographic of the audience you play to, etc. If the programme meets with my approval based on the previous criteria, more than likely, I’ll do it for free, as I think it’s important to spread the word about Synthetiks, and if the show’s cool, then I’m cool. On the other hand, if I see you’re the sort of programme that makes Jerry Springer look like Walter goddamned Cronkite, then I’m going to refuse. Unless, of course, you meet my other demands:
1) the ability for me to choose the recording date,
2) all-expense paid flights for Sidore and I to the set and back home,
3) pre-paid accomodation when there,
4) the ability for me to pre-screen the questions that the presenter would be asking,
5) a closed set, and
6) a cheque made out to me for $5,000 USD for my time.
And that’s the point where most of the exploitationists thank me for my time, and scuttle backwards through the door. Again, I genuinely enjoy doing television segments, as it presents the opportunity to inform greater numbers of people about Dolls, Gynoids, and Androids, but really it’s only fair to pay me for my time. Or, more importantly, don’t run lowest common denominator material on your show, for starters.
Ten minutes had passed, with no callback from Emily, so I’d sent her a text, telling her to check her voicemail as soon as she could. And literally as soon as I’d hit Send, Bill called! Moreover, Bill called, saying that there’s been breaking news, and they have to postpone our segment! Apparently, one of the principal individuals in a story they’d been following for several months had passed away, and the network had told the producers that that story takes precedence over whatever segments were slated to go out for tonight. ‘Well, we can always reschedule,’ he said. ‘I’ll have to give that some thought,’ I replied, and explained my dissatisfaction with the release forms. He said they’d be open to talking about it, whatever that may mean exactly.
And that, my friends, is why you didn’t see Sidore and me on Dr Drew tonight. Which is kind of a shame, as I was looking forward to being David Bowie to Dr Drew’s Russell Harty.
The moral of this story? If you’re eating onigiri of that size, give it a good two, two and half hours between eating each one. Any less than that, and you run the very real risk of bursting. Don’t Be Overeager with Onigiri™!