I have known my friend Kelie for a long, long time.Â Since we met when we were seven, way back when, in Hartford, CT, we have been writing a show.Â It was called Piggy Palace and was a sort of soap opera. Kelie would write very involved scripts, which we either stuck to, or not and both of us would act the whole thing out.Â We moved from one character to the next, across generations and cultures.Â We had a few, critical costumes and props from the clean clothes basket or random closets throughout the house…and no audience.Â Â It was all gripping emotion, drama, and the everydayness that is bound to happen in a show that goes on for years for our own entertainment.
We have a new show now, with a dream attached–we want to make this show our job.Â It has nothing to do with the original, except that the original players (me and Kelie) are still involved.Â The show is called “Dinner Confidential.”
Every Monday, I am going to let you know how our dream is going, because this time, we are going to share the show.
(Today) one year after our first meeting, we have a pitch piece and a treatment.Â When we started, we knew only that we wanted to tape real people making their dinner.Â We had no camera skills, a little camera, and a few friends that let us into their kitchen to see how they do what they do.Â Â In five minute bits of asking questions and taping, we captured pieces of peoples lives in the daily battle of making dinner. We continued because we loved it.Â In one of those pieces, because no one else was available that day, we taped my husband Jonathan making grilled cheese sandwiches, and for the first time, we put ourselves on the other side of the camera.Â Lo and behold, what really seemed to stand out (this is the beauty of making your own show) was us!!Â We were great together–we were funny, great listeners, had a lot to say and had some refreshingly frank opinions.Â We went back to the drawing board to write us into the show.Â We hired (and bartered) for professional camera work, sound and editors.Â We set up an “executive viewing board” –people whose opinion we valued–and listened to everything they had to say.Â I don’t know how many times we rewrote the show until we came up with what we think really works.Â We showed it to someone in the business and they asked us if we had a treatment.Â “A what??!!” We looked that up and got one ready. We called a husband of a friend who knows about this kind of thing to ask if he would check it.Â He did.Â People are amazingly generous if you can get up the nerve to ask.
So here we are.Â We are about to send it out to a list of people whom we feel will either have valuable insight or advice, or know someone who might know someone else who could introduce us….some of these people we know well, and some of them–we are hoping remember us.Â We have another (short) list of people who we think could make the show happen, if they got it.Â One person is a celebrity of sorts and the other is an agent.Â We are going to make another list (it’s all about the lists) of how we could possibly get the DVD into the hands of those two people.Â In other words, short term goals to work our way up to the long term goal, with dates attached.
That’s Plan 1.
We get signs all along the way that the show is going to be produced–for instance Kelie spotted a pair of shoes in a catalogue that were definitely and without a doubt, meant to be Kelie’s Dinner Confidential shoes.Â We are clipping out the picture of the shoes (I know my shoes are out there somewhere), we are going to tape it to the wall, and we are going to be buy those shoes (and mine) as soon as we write a contract.Â A pair of shoes can be the kind of things that keep a person going.Â The way we look at it, as long as we are trying to make it happen, there is always the possibility.
I saw a quote from Ted Kennedy in the New York Times, that struck me.Â He said to his nephew when we he was trying to learn how to sail, “we might not be the best, but we can work harder than anyone”…”if you can stick with it, (and keep) a true compass” (and do your best, you will eventually) “get there.”
In the meantime, we need to eat.Â Last night I made a chicken pot pie with a biscuit top and a side salad of:
baby arugula (you can use field greens), thinly sliced crispy apples, currants, toasted almonds and finely minced shallot with a dijon dressing (olive oil, red wine vinegar, fresh lemon juice, dijon, salt, pepper and a drop of maple syrup.)