Tuesday, December 21, 2004

December 21, 2004
On Sunday afternoon Kathy, Thomas and Deena made chicken fried steak, mashed potatoes, cornbread and gravy, and green beans and we had a royal birthday feast. Really fun.

Big meetings all morning today trying to get TW problems worked out. Met with production first, then sales. Let them vent and make suggestions. Carole took good notes and we distilled those down to the main points. We will meet again tomorrow and hammer out some new rules.

I'm still quite amazed at the documentary I watched on the genesis of Seinfeld. In it Jerry correctly points out that no one has copied what they did. And to further make his point, here’s comedy writer Peter Mehlman:

"When I started pitching shows after Seinfeld, a stunning fact emerged. The networks hated Seinfeld. They liked it as fans, but professionally, they resented it. It broke all their rules."

I found the same to be true in radio. I can't tell you how many meetings I was forced to endure where some anal program director beat us up about saying the call letters every 30 seconds, with dire threats that we won’t survive unless we do, and when I would say, "Howard Stern never says the calls, never tells the time, doesn't have traffic reports," they would say, "You can’t compare yourself to Howard." The unspoken part being, "Listen, we don’t have a clue why that works, so either play by the goofy rules that kind of work, or get out."

And if only I had the cajones of Larry David to have stood up and said, "I'm not doing any of this. Good luck with the show." Man, he is my hero. Both he and Stern.

Meanwhile, I’m drifting on CGII, the book. Gus is fleshing out page layouts and we are adding some really juicy photographs but I’m stuck in first gear on getting the artwork done. Need some advice, something to hang my hat on:

"Always plan with the end result in mind. Be clear, be specific."
—Stephanie Goddard Davidson

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