In the meeting room, everybody else is engaging in some sort of weird activity -- I mean, they're talking and discussing stuff, and making notes and I think it has something to do with sports, but I'm unsure exactly what they're...oh, they're working. All told, the running time for tomorrow's show is six minutes and twenty-five seconds. Elliot tries to leave because he has a date but Dana says, "Sit your ass down, Valentino." I guess because Elliot's not on the Dana Whitaker Dating Plan, it means she cracks the whip and swears at him. Nice double standard. Or maybe it's some sort of anchor privilege thing, because Dan pops his head in and Dana wonders what he's still doing there. She says it in a friendly way, unlike when I pop into the newsroom in the evening and the reporters say, "What are you doing here?" in such a way it makes me think they heard me coming and rolled the keg into the darkroom or something. Dan says he's on Isaac patrol, but he doesn't know where Isaac is or what he's doing, so Dana says, "Keep up the good work." Dana tells Dan they only have six minutes and twenty-five seconds for tomorrow's show. Dan says it's no problem, he'll "stretch it." He starts giving Kim a massage, unsolicited. Casey says he's stretched that much time into an hour before. "No, you've stretched six minutes and twenty-five seconds into seven minutes and twenty-five seconds," says Dana. "Hmmm. Certainly seemed like an hour," says Dan. Coincidentally enough, on this commercial-free tape of the episode, it has been seven minutes and twenty-five seconds -- and it certainly seems like about eight hours.
Jeremy walks in and Dana says, "What did you find out?" and Jeremy, displaying a self-absorption that even Casey would find off-putting, blah-blahs forever about his speech dilemma, whom to thank, whom to leave out. Then he realizes that's not what Dana was asking about. She calls him a "matzo ball." He makes a big show of taking out his little piece of paper and crossing something out and saying, "Well, that opens up a slot." Dan suggests doing a story on Darren Kehoe, who's dying. Dana has never heard of him, but she's hoping he's a great and accomplished athlete whose death would warrant a forty-five-minute feature on tomorrow's show. "Absolutely," says Dan. "He came this close to winning a bronze medal in archery at the 1932 Olympics." "How close?" says Dana. "He came in seventh," says Dan, and Dana looks less than impressed, although I swear I saw NBC do an hour-long profile on that guy during their coverage in Sydney. Dana should be taking her cues from NBC, the network that can spin stirring documentaries about the most boring athletes ever. She ponders it and says, "All right. He's dying?" and her "he's dying?" was a little hopeful and people probably laughed. I did too, but because it's very much how the industry works. The wire editor will ask me if I want a bus crash story for the front and my first question is always, "Did anyone die?" And he'll say "no" and I'll say, "What else you got?" but he'll say "seven injured, all children" and I really hope I don't go to hell but I'll say, "Seven kids hurt? Okay, that's good, I can work with that, that's something," and honest I'm not a callous person, really, and neither is Dana, who's hoping the guy is dying from some rare disease, one to which Sports Night can bring some attention. Dan mulls it over and says, "He's dying from having been alive for ninety-eight years," which was pretty funny. Dana looks disappointed and then tells everybody to go back to their desks and come back in thirty minutes with either some ideas or the contents of their desk in a box. Jeremy tries to weasel some Chinese food out of Dana by offering to put her back on the list. She kicks him to the curb!