Nobody Deserves Mark Curry's Scraps!
Giving into the Sternal Journalist bite-sized appetite for now
Est. Read Time: 2 minutes. Read Time brought to you once again by the Ashburton Energy + Hair Logistics Group, in association with the Bradley Hills Bureau of Corrections + Housing.
New to the SternJourn? Check out the best of 2022, 2021, or 2020.
I have a show at Hotel Cafe on February 8th
I got a lot of responses last week, which is always what happens when I think I’ve provided a SternJourn that is too short for enjoyable consumption. Because you guys are busy, I get it! So I’m going to to take what I thought would be an extreeeemely labyrinthian, gargantuan SternJourn and break it up into little pieces. This is the beginning of the story of GateKeeper Management.
Chapter 1: Nobody Deserves Mark Curry’s Scraps
As mentioned last week, this is a story I was reminded of because of the recent ascent of Fellow 34-Year-Old-About-Town George Santos. It is the story of when I briefly started a fake management company to try to scam Hollywood powers-that-be into letting me be (successful).
It was 2018. I felt like I was a funny, thoughtful, talented writer who had provably and consistently made people laugh and think and feel generally content and/or rapt by things I had written.
Even earlier than that—maybe 2015-ish—I remember talking to a friend about how comedy/writing stuff was going and explaining that I felt first there comes a point where you think that you’re good enough that if you got a big break opportunity, you wouldn’t fuck it up; then there comes a point where you feel like if you got the opportunity, you would excel at it; then finally there comes a point where you’re pissed you haven’t gotten the opportunity yet. When I was talking to that friend in 2015, I felt like I was juuust hitting Point A. By 2018, I was squarely in Point C.
I think it’s important to note that none of these milestones have anything to do with deserving an opportunity. And that’s not because people don’t deserve things. It’s because deserving a thing is almost always out of step with the practical chances of obtaining said thing.
I’m speaking only within the parameters of achieving ones dreams, by the way. Of course there are things that everyone deserves and that be practically obtainable: to be housed, to be free, to feel reasonably safe and loved. But nobody really deserves to get staffed on the Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper reboot.I don't care if they have lived experience as a teacher who coaches basketball and have written a billion spec scripts and were Mark Curry's assistant for the right number of years! That all may be true, but there could be a number of other people who fit the bill for other reasons.
But you can honestly self-assess and it is reasonable to keep track of whether you could do the job, could be great at it, if you got it. And it could be useful from a motivational standpoint to keep track of the amount of time that has passed since you technically could have been an asset to some type of writerly or otherwise creative endeavor, and then allow your emotions to run wild.
That’s what I did in 2018. And what my emotions told me to do was to start asking my friends, “If I can’t get a job myself because I don’t have an agent or a manager, can’t I just… make up an agent or manager?”
And next week, I’ll talk about how I got that idea from my (then) recently deceased grandfather. Ooh, abrupt ending! We’re back in a golden age of SternJourn!
Turn Every Page. Film. I really loved this documentary about historian Robert Caro and his editor Robert Gottlieb who has edited him for 50 years. If you like writing or history or octogenarians still at the top of their games, you will love it. There’s a 3 minute bit on semicolons that is stupendous.
Slow Horse. Television Show. Three episodes into the second season of this AppleTV+ show and it’s just good old fashioned British spy stuff. Funny, kinda cozy, just enough mystery.
How Much Netflix Can the World Absorb? Article. I haven’t finished it yet, but I’m finding this profile of Netflix’s new Chief Content Officer Bella Bajaria a real hoot. It’s well written and, considering how big of a role Netflix plays in so many of our lives, it’s fascinating and education to peek under the hood.
Someone Like You — Dubstep Remix. Song. It’s exactly what it sounds like, but it got me through a hectic time this week.
This one was a real clusterfuck, I’ll admit it, but we don’t all have a Robert Gottlieb or the cojones to wait a decade to publish like Robert Caro, so I feel electric about where it’s going and think it’s going to shape into something exciting.
Thank you and love always,
Not a real thing. Yet.
I bet Mark Curry's had a bunch of assistants. Why reboot Hangin' with Mr. Cooper when we could get Mark Curry’s take on Entourage? Just sayin!