Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Strike Confusion

So Emily Mills and I are in the UCB box office just now when the phone rings.

Me: UCB Theatre.

Very Sweet, Well-Intentioned Lady: Hi, what show do you have going on tonight?

Me: A free stand up show at 10:30pm called "See You Next Tuesday." And because it's free, you don't have to make reservations.

Lady: Oh, great. And you guys have shows seven nights a week?

Me: That's correct.

Lady: So you guys aren't affected by the strike then?

Me: (pause) No, live theatre isn't affected by the strike.

Lady: Oh, right. 'Cause it's not written.

Me: (longer pause) No, it's written. But the strike only affects TV and movies.

(she remains silent)

Me: The strike has no effect on live theatre.

Lady: Oh, great.

Me: Yup.


Cut to me and Emily laughing, as it just gets funnier the more we think about it. Not that we particularly enjoy bagging on a kind someone who is supporting live comedy, but the illogical nature of her confusion did rather tickle our funny bones. Other things we decided this woman thinks the strike effects: books, personal e-mails, children's schoolwork, MySpace comments, blogging, relating stories about your day to family members at the dinner table. My favorite jokes Emily made: all children are in tears because their mothers can't sing them lullabies and this woman is starving because she can no longer read menus.


Brian said...


Making fun of stupid people.

It's too easy. I expect more from you.

Perhaps when the writer's strike has passed, my expectations will be fulfilled.

Good for you with the whole chant thing. Who knew you were a leader? Must be the rods...

David Morris said...

I'm going to have to step in and valiantly defend this poor woman.

I don't think she is dumb or stupid at all, or even particularly ill-informed. I think it is entirely reasonable to be unsure as to whether the strike affects live theater. There is no reason in principle why this wouldn't be the case, given that some live theater does employ professional writers. Moreover, I think it is entirely reasonable to guess that maybe the strike doesn't affect a theater known primarily for improv because, just maybe, such theaters do not employ writers per se.

You see, not everyone is steeped up to the gills in information about the writer's strike or the inner workings of improv theaters. As someone who professes to be actively involved in garnering support for the writers' cause, I would expect you to be less snarky toward someone who is just trying to understand it a little better.

(begin slow clap..)

Lindsay Evelyn said...

Okay, David, out with it . . . were you the lady on the phone?

Perhaps I am being severe with the nice lady, who was indeed very nice. But firstly, I was certainly not mean to her on the phone. You know me. I hardly think that my wanting to write a blog entry because I found it funny makes me a villain. Secondly, I do not think her ill-informed, but certainly greviously under-informed and lacking in logic. I mean, have we been hearing about Broadway going dark due to the strike? I would just think that one's powers of deductive reasoning would tell one that this is purely a big and small screen issue, especially since it's being widely publicized that this is an issue of new media and its advertising revenue not making it to writers and actors, something live theatre doesn't have to worry about. I'm aware that it is neither her profession nor, as in my case, her hopeful profession, but still . . . come on, David. Doesn't take a genius nor, as you say, someone "steeped up to the gills in information" to know that a live performance has nothing to do with this strike. Therefore I think the joking inferences we were making weren't so terribly out of line.

Also, I do not claim to be so actively garnering support for the strike. I just wanted to get that on the record: I am a nobody who is professing my own support, but make no claims in having an effect on the hearts and minds of others. Sure, I hope that people are informing themselves and coming around to the same opinion of the strike I hold. But you made it sound as though I think I'm some sort of union leader, which I know I am not. That Joss Whedon fan strike thing was meant to be self-aware and ironic.

Also, maybe I'd be less pissy with you right now for painting me as a snarky Hollywood insider and yourself as "valiant," non-judgemental man of the everyday American citizen if you hadn't also started your own slow clap. Ass.

Danforth said...

Actually, Broadway has been going on strike, but for other reasons. Such reports could generate confusion to the casual news skimmer. Still...

David Morris said...

I didn't intend that to mean that I was starting my own slow clap, but now that you mention it, I think it's a pretty funny idea.

Lindsay Evelyn said...

I think you have failed to realize that I was genuinely upset with your comment yesterday and remain so today.