Aisle Of Wit

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The Story You Are About To Read Is True

If you’re of a certain age, you probably have never heard of DRAGNET–at best, you might have seen the theatrical spoof that helped propel Tom Hanks’ career that’s now 35 years old.  But waaay back in TV and radio history, the phrase that adorns the top of today’s entry was right up there with “you do you, boo”.  It ended with “…the names have been changed to protect the innocent”.

Because nothing but nothing is beneath me these days in my desperate attempts to maintain solvency, I’ve been trying to resurrect past relationships in the hopes of helping a good friend sell a documentary which his wife is helping to promote.  One of those just happens to be the chairperson of a major media/tech company.

Here’s where we’ll start changing names and even hiding genders in the hope of keeping this private, but yet conveying our absolute frustration in how an entire generation is treating both of us, and me in particular.  Let’s call the company, oh, I dunno…”Nile”, since that’s also the name of a long river.

The chairperson (let’s call this person “Mark”)  eventually connected me to an executive deep down the food chain who has, per their LinkedIn, held the same job for this company for more than 11 years.  This person is apparently skilled enough at their job, which is to supervise the production and acquisition of documentaries, to have held that job for virtually their entire career, and has survived several previous regimes in the process.  This person has an advanced degree from a prestigious university and has apparently married a person of diverse background.  Let’s call this person “Bridget”.

The documentary in question is currently exhibiting at, and winning awards, at several regional film festivals.  It tells a compelling story about an impassioned religious leader (no, not a cultist) who has transformed lives of addicts otherwise left for dead through the power of prayer and conviction, and the tough love this person and their spouse have shown.

The first such correspondance I had with this top executive (this person’s ultimate boss) was more than two months ago .  Subsequently, the executive in question (let’s call this person Bridget) postponed several scheduled meetings (zoom calls, of course–who shows up in person these days anyway, right?) , copied several underlings, and continued to postpone even a single phone call for roughly two months.  Each time, some other person e-mailed me, and occasionally the person who is representing the documentary, with some other excuse citing “being called into a meeting”.    Neither one of us knows if those meetings are in person or virtual, or even actually involve a professional colleague.

Finally, last night “Bridget” actually responded personally, only to me (because, after so many e-mails, why would anyone expect an executive to remember exactly who has corresponded with them?”.   Here is the redacted response we got:

Wanted to reach out and personally let you know how much I enjoyed the film! It’s a moving story (redacted) is fascinating and it’s so well told so I can see why it’s been having such a wonderful run on the festival circuit. Though this film is 100% my cup of tea, our creative mandate for documentary features is unbelievably narrow right now and as a result, this film isn’t going to be quite right for us at this time.

I know we’re in the process of setting a time for us and I very much look forward to meeting you soon! I’ll be happy to tell you more about our program and what we’re looking for these days.

Congrats again on the success of the film!

All the best,

Yet when my friend, in a late night fit of frustration and rage, simply looked at the massive catalogue of titles specific to the genre and subject, he found SIXTY examples of such titles already owned.  Some have some famous names attached to them.  Many do not.  Only some of them won any awards.

So what are we supposed to think now?

Did “Bridget” actually see the film?  Is it indeed a personal preference?  What indeed is “Nile” looking for?

Dunno.

I do know “Bridget” has apparently done one job for a decade, somehow well enough to keep it.  It sure doesn’t appear “Bridget” has done anything to suggest their competnency–including exhibiting common courtesy.

Yes, my friend and I are older males.  But we’ve done much, much more in our careers than has Bridget.  We’ve made a lot more responsible decisions over far more decades.

Do we not deserve even a shred of respect?!?!

Here’s my uncomfortable truth, “Bridget”  As of thsi writing, my net worth is not even four figures.  I’m that hungry for something good to happen.

Are you REALLY THAT GODDAMN BUSY?!??!?!?!?  To not even reschedule a COFFEE to EXPLAIN YOURSELF??!??!

Would you like me to forward to this to “Mark” at “Nile”?

HUHHHHH?!??!??!

For now, I won’t.  Frankly, I’m ashamed of my own desperation.  None of this was my fault, no matter howmuch what’s left of my world believes otherwise.

But I don’t think I’m out of bounds in simply asking for some respect.  Some common courtesy.  Some consideration of the work that went into my ability to have even gotten a response from “Mark” WAY sooner than you, “Bridget”.

“Bridget”, I have followed up asking for you to somehow find time to show up in person and have a damn coffee to explain what you intend to explain.  My experience could probably help you.  You’d know that from the moment you meet me.

At this point, it’s gonna have to be within walking distance, because I can barely afford gas.  Thank G-d my legs still work.  I can walk far.

And you’re picking up the tab.

I deserve that little.  I know I deserve a lot more, but you don’t have the responsbility for that.

Where do you plan to live next month, “Bridget”?  I cant say I know for sure.

I sure hope if and when you get to be my age, the “Bridgets” in your world then treat you nicer than you have myself and my friend.

Do your job.  Or recommend me to join you.

Please.

Ah, Sergeant Friday.  If only you were still around.