Tuesday Writing Prompt

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Mike Dwyer

Mike Dwyer is a former writer and contributor at Ordinary Times.

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7 Responses

  1. Avatar North says:

    First up was Randy or Randolph William Hearst as he had to be called to his face. As a great grandson of the founder of A+E Networks, Randy had been immovably installed in his position on the creative team by the pure market forces of good old fashioned American nepotism. Randy’s family tree had more loops in it than a box of fruity breakfast cereal; he was so inbred that his eye sockets angled inward giving him an air that he was intensely trying to peer up his own nostrils. Despite this Randy was keenly sensitive about his dignity and anything that RWH construed as a slight could result in furious phone calls from his boss and bosses boss. As such Larry had to listen with respectful attentiveness to the pearls that would drop from Randy’s drooping lips and then come up with a plausible reason to not use them.
    “I was thinking…” Randy trailed off for a moment as the rest of his brain manfully tried to catch up. The creative committee exhaled slowly, Randy would reliably jump in early to defend his prerogative of making first pitch but sometimes he’d trail off into nowhere and normal business could resume in short order. Larry counted his heartbeats up to fifteen and then cleared his throat.
    “Yes very interesting Mr. Hearst,” he intoned respectfully, “moving on.” Randy interrupted, his eyes lighting up as two of the lonely neurons inside his head managed, by sheer providence, to connect and he suggested…Report

    • Avatar Burt Likko in reply to North says:

      “…Hypatia the Hidden Hero. Hypatia of Alexandria, right? She escapes the fire at the Great Library with a trunk full of scrolls. She’s landed at the court of the King of the Songhai in present-day Nigeria, so boom, we’ve got diversity there. And every week, she reads the King a different scroll, and the King uses that knowledge to better the welfare of his people!”

      Larry swallowed the lump of terror in his throat. “The diversity angle is good, but you do remember that the Songhai didn’t form as an organized kingdom until the mid-fourteenth century, right? So they’re at least thousand years anachronistic for Hypatia, Mr. Hearst.”

      “Oh, so does someone have a better idea?” Randy arched his eyebrows and Larry, with trepidation, opened up the next folder.

      “Aztec Gladiators.” He couldn’t help but roll his eyes. “Mark?”

      Mark Andrew Howard, a third cousin once removed of writer-and-director-with-actual-talent Ron Howard, incorrectly believed that ability ran in the family the same way that did red hair subject to male pattern baldness. So he boldly jumped into the pitch:

      “We’re set in ancient Mexico. In the jungle. In the pyramids. Every week, slaves and dishonored Aztec warriors are cast into the arena, to fight for glory — the winner gets redemption, the loser is sacrificed to their cruel gods!”

      “You do know this is basic cable, Mark? As in, little kids are watching this stuff?”

      “Kids dig it! My kids loved that Mel Gibson movie about the Aztec.”

      “Your kids were in college, Mark. Next?”Report

  2. Avatar Miss Mary says:

    Can I just say I love this idea!Report

    • Avatar Richard Hershberger in reply to Miss Mary says:

      It lost my willing suspension of disbelief with the claim that The History Channel had ever “got the general facts correct and also promoted the field of history.” At least that’s not my recollection. As I remember it, even back when it de facto was the World War II Channel it had a propensity for alien sightings and the like. But perhaps my memory is compressing the timing, and that at first they were just doing WWII, getting it right that Hitler lost, and only later brought in the alien involvement.Report

      • Avatar Mike Dwyer in reply to Richard Hershberger says:

        Ah Richard, you’ll notice I said the History Network. A subtle play on words, but my hope was to avoid the obvious criticism of the History Channel. I agree with your critique though I found it to be tolerable in its early days.Report

  3. Avatar Burt Likko says:

    By the way, @mike-dwyer , was the feature picture for this post chosen because it shows a bunch of white dudes building an Easter Island Moai? Or because they’re lifting it to face inland rather than out to the ocean?Report