Wednesday, April 27, 2011

My Worst Pitch EVER!!!

This happened a number of years ago. I had a pitch meeting in the early afternoon, but met an old friend for a quick lunch. We stopped in at a small Middle-Eastern place and being brave, I ordered something (I forget what) that I'd never tried before.

Untried restaurant. Untried food.

It was delicious. We finished lunch. My friend went back to his office. I went to my meeting. But as I got to my car, I noticed something odd. I was sweating. Really sweating. Not the, "it's a warm day" - kind of sweat, but buckets were pouring off me.

It must have been something that I ate. I wasn't sick. I wasn't going to throw up. I was just drenched in sweat. And it was getting worse.

By the time I got to the meeting, I was sopping wet. My clothes were soaked and sticking to me. The guy I was meeting with asked if I was okay. I assured him that I was - but all he could do was stare at me. My hair was plastered down over my face...

The pitch didn't go well. I felt fine, but I was dripping puddles on everything. When I got up to leave, there was a wet puddle where I'd been sitting. Needless to say, the show didn't sell. We won't even discuss the squishy handshake at the end of the meeting.

So what do we learn from this? Know when to cancel. If you're sick. If you have a cold, a flu, something that you even think is contagious - do everyone a favor and put it off until next week.

Nobody wants to get sick - and spreading germs isn't the best way to pitch your show.


  1. Steve,
    what a nightmare! I wonder if there was anyway to turn that to your advantage at the pitch..." this show idea is so good it's making me sweat with excitement...I hope it makes you sweat too"...hahaha. BTW what was the dish that caused so much grief?

  2. Hey Mike,
    Nope. There is no way to turn around a situation like this. Imagine that you're in a meeting with someone who's sneezing and coughing all over you. You're not going to be receptive to their message.

    Do you remember that little place across from CITY-TV? It was a small building filled with 'exotic' fast food takeout places. I got something like a Gyros or Souvlaki from the last place on the right. I'm sure there was nothing wrong with it - it just went down funny.

  3. I used to wonder why writers wore white shirts and blazers to meetings... then I made the mistake of wearing a blue shirt to a pitch at Disney. I had two actresses and a director in the meeting but I did most of the pitching. During the Q&A I looked down and saw hell rings much like the ones in the picture above. One of the actresses smiled at me as if to say, "Yeah, dude. Not your secret." I quickly slipped on the jacket I was wearing and finished the meeting. Since then it's white shirts (or black) and jackets all the way. The greatest pitch in the world can get destroyed if they see you seating like an encyclopedia salesman.