Over Christmas, New Years and Three Kings Day we had a wonderful time visiting my family in Florida and my wife Donna's family in Ohio, but my thoughts were never far from home. Every day I would read the trades on my PDA thanks to places with free WiFi. I corresponded with friends back home who were keeping me up to date on strike news and I even fired off E-mails to couple of media organizations and one to a Republican presidential candidate who, although is seeking union endorsement, decided to cross a picket line.
Looking back it was amazing to see how many of our conversions, over dinner or drinks, with friends and family were about the strike. This totally disproves the notion that Middle America does not care about striking writers and not once did I hear writers being refereed to as "Spoiled Millionaires". It was obvious that the neither the local papers or the local TV & radio news provided sufficient coverage on the story. They were surprised to learn that we in Los Angeles had the same problem (I wrote to David Hiller, Claudiae Eller and Richard Verrier at the Los Angeles Times about their lack of fair and balanced coverage of the strike in thier article titled Writers union feeling the heat). Donna and I would to the best of our ability explain the situation about residuals for DVDs and new media. I also directed people to web sites like United Hollywood and Nikki Fink's Deadline Hollywood Daily.
The bulk of the strike talk involved the late night talk shows or the lack of late night talk show monologues. By this time it was announced that the network talk shows would be returning on January 2nd but David Letterman's company Worldwide Pants had not yet finalized their deal with the WGA. The monologues were sorely missed especially since we going full speed into Election 08 news coverage. We discussed what the hosts can and can not do. I basically stated that unless you have an interim agreement, you can't do struck work. Deadline Hollywood Daily: WGA Reminds Returning Jay And Conan: No Monologues. Then on January 2nd we watched the return of the network talk shows. I enjoyed seeing everyone back but was surprised to see Jay doing a monologue. Jay is an honorable man. He has supported the WGA in this strike and he supported SAG during the 2000 commercial strike but when it comes to writing his own monologues I want to ask him what he asked Hugh Grant, " What the hell were you thinking?"