During season 1, I struck up a "friendship" with the assistant to the Executive Producer - a legend in the business who is a true character. After the season ended, his assistant - my "friend" - got a job working somewhere else. 5 months later the second season started up and the first day back I went into the Executive Producer's office to say hi and catch up and thank him for having me back. This is exactly what was said:
ME: Hey, great to see you again!
EP: Handleman, don't fuck my assistant this year.
That was day 1. Luckily, things got better. Pamie returned...we were all shocked to hear of "Hot Properties" cancellation - though it does appear on many "Mediocre But Cancelled" lists.
My old office mate didn't come back, so Pamie and I shared an office together. I remember the first thing we teamed up on was a bit about celebrities you would be surprised to learn were beaners. We were very proud of them. And one prompted my all time favorite note from the Comedy Central standards and practices lady. This was the note:
"You cannot imply that Carmen Electra wants to kill all the Jews"
I don't remember what the joke was that prompted that note, but I'm sure it was awesome.
I was itching to do better this season and not get stuck in the no funny zone. The thing that saved my ass was the Host's demands that we do something about Kanye West. Since I am black on the inside, this was my wheel house. It was one of those things that got mentioned a couple times very subtley, but by the fourth mention I realized I needed to come up with something.
He came into a writer's meeting in the morning and mentioned it yet again, and I was ready. I said I had a song parody idea. He asked how it would go, and I horribly rapped: "I'll admit I liked gold digger, but Kanye West's is a Crazy n---a"
In any other world, I would be fired or beaten up, or fired and then beaten up. But in this insane environment, I actually gained status in my boss's eyes. He wanted to do the song, big time. I went to my office and for some reason it just clicked, and I wrote the song in like 20 minutes.
Quick note here: I just wanna say that the people who worked on this show were some of the most talented people around. You'd be shocked to know the kind of talent that is behind shows that you think suck. And the great thing about this place was that it was an absolute free for all. In the writer's room, you could say anything. It was impossible to offend. It was all about being funny. Of course, as is the practice on every show, nothing turns out to be as funny as it was in the writer's room. Something gets lost in translation, but that's always the way it goes.
So anyway, we made the Kanye video and it was one of the more popular things that we did. Many months later that video would be played at every stop to thousands of people on a 100 city stand up tour. I'm still waiting for the residual checks.
This led to me becoming "the song guy", and we did several more in the run of the series. Our host loved doing them, our Executive Producer did not. Let's put it this way, he liked them as much as he liked me fucking his assistants. Later on in season 2, I wrote another song about a rich Arab Sheik. Right before I was going out to shoot it, the Executive Producer pulled me aside and said:
"What are we turning into here? Weird Al Fucking Yankovic?"
Many things on our show ended up involving a midget, and the Arab Sheik video was no different. Brad was our midget. The saying in the writer's room was "Brad's not in it, 'till the last minute". Because no matter what, he always got thrown into sketches at the very end for an added dose of midget comedy. I wrote a line for him in the video. It went:
"Ludacris you say your necklace looks like a midget...Well my necklace really is a midget!"
And then we did some special effects to make it look like Brad was hanging from the Sheik's neck. This led to this awkward situation...