Sports Night
La Forza Del Destino

Episode Report Card
Daniel: B | Grade It Now!
La Forza Del Destino

Up at the bar, Casey is talking to some redhead, and I have to say they find some excellent actors for these extras since it really appears that Casey's not boring her to tears. Dan horns in and wants to know what's going on, and we find out Casey's signing something for Redhead's boyfriend Joe, and I was really confused as to why Casey was signing something, and embarrassingly, it takes me a few minutes to realize that people might actually want these guys' autographs. By the time I finish cracking up, Redhead is gone. Dan settles onto the barstool and tries to bring up a potential job offer, but Casey doesn't really seem interested in talking about it. Dan says he wouldn't mind living in L.A. with the sunshine and the Pacific Ocean and driving around with the top down (which is apparently a negative for Casey, who points out he'd have to buy a car) and Laker girls. Casey doesn't think it's a good offer, and Dan points out that it's 11 p.m. and a million and a half more viewers and Dana would be the executive director. Dan then says another plus is the L.A. Philharmonic Orchestra with Mr. X at the podium, and I wrote "Mr. X" because it's a Finnish name that I won't even attempt to embarrass myself by attempting to spell since I've never heard his name before, and not that I claim to know who waves the baton at most orchestras around the US, but I scoff at the notion that both of these sports-show anchors know the conductor from Helsinki at the L.A. Philharmonic, like Sorkin has these guys speaking with a greater level of cultural awareness than half the people on his other show, The West Wing. And maybe it is a possibility that Dan and Casey know who Mr. X is, but I like their dialogue more when the cast tosses around obscure sports trivia, like the Marquis of Queensberry rules for boxing, than when it's references to Finnish orchestra conductors and Israeli violinists. ["The first time I read that sentence, I thought Daniel had written 'the Marquis of Quisenberry,' and I thought to myself, 'Now that's trivia -- Quiz got knighted? You'd think they'd mention that somewhere in Total Baseball.' Okay, sorry." -- Sars] Long pause while these guys contemplate the L.A. PHILHARMONIC for God's sake. Then Dan points out it's a better job than the one they have now and he doesn't think they're going to have these jobs much longer. Casey wants to cross that bridge when they come to it.

Back at the other table, Natalie says, "Jeremy? I've had a couple of drinks so I think I have the courage to tell you this," and Dana, sandwiched between the two of them at the table, gets this "uh-oh" look on her face and tells Natalie that if Natalie's going to tell Jeremy something that requires courage, then maybe she should leave, but Natalie says it's okay. "I'm still in love with you," says Natalie, and Dana tries desperately to get away, as do I. Jeremy tries to speak but Natalie says, "There hasn't been a day since I broke up with you that I haven't wanted you back," so of course Jeremy says, "I broke up with you," and Natalie says, "There have been a couple of days," as her face turns to stone. Then Natalie suggests maybe it's the "coconut piña colada" talking (and I would rather hear the piña colada talk than her right now), or these mood swings she's been having, but she actually hates Jeremy's living guts. Dana tries desperately to shut Natalie up, and I sit here with a notepad, forced to recap this, and I think I know now how wolves feel just before they chew off their own legs to escape hunters' traps. I am kind of relieved that Dan and Casey join them at the table, at least until Casey launches into the exact same speech about desperate times that Dan tried on Kim, so maybe these guys share failed pickup lines or something, or maybe this was a sure-fire way to score with women in the latest issue of Maxim, but when Casey gets to the "sleep with each other" part, he stares straight at Dana, who stares right back at him, unmoved. Natalie says, "If Jeremy wanted, he could have me anytime, anywhere," as Sorkin continues to probably rewrite some personal history of his own, like what guy doesn't want a dumped girlfriend to spout this inane dialogue that Natalie is saying right now, that she would do things to his mind and body that she thinks he'd really enjoy, like would someone please shut her up. Dana says, "Would you please for the love of God let me out," and Jeremy gets up to let her out. Dana's going to get more drinks, and of course the guys all want beer because they're such manly men and Natalie asks for a "coconut piña colada," like could you please stop calling it that, Natalie, piña coladas are supposed to have coconut in them, so this is like asking for an "orange-juice screwdriver" or a "tonic-water gin and tonic," and Dana wonders how she's supposed to remember all that, and Jeremy says, "It's three beers and a piña colada -- do you want a mnemonic device?" which cracked me up, and Dana snaps at him and then says "three beers and a coconut piña colada" and goes to get them.

Up at the bar, Jack the Bolivian Hitman bartender is asking this balding guy with big sideburns, "You want another one of these?" except both of Jack's hands are below camera range, so I don't know WHAT Jack is offering this guy, who says, "Yeah, if you don't mind," like, he's a bartender, Balding Guy with Big Sideburns. BG w/ BS is watching Sports Night on the bar television. "This show is good, don't you think?" he says to Jack. "They work just across the street, a lot of those guys come in here a lot," says Jack, yet strangely he doesn't say whether he thinks the show is good or not, leading me to believe that he doesn't like it but is afraid to say so in case they hear him. Dana comes up to the bar next to BG w/ BS. "And here's the executive producer," says Jack. "How you doing," says BG w/ BS, and compliments her on the show. Dana thanks him and orders "three beers and a coconut piña colada" and Jack says, "I need to go in the back for one minute," whatever that's supposed to mean, and I think maybe Jack needed to suppress a sharp retort upon being asked for a coconut piña colada, which tells me he has greater self-restraint that I did when I was a bartender in college. If somebody had asked me for a "coconut piña colada," I would have said something like, "Yeah, I hear they come in coconut flavour now," and then I would have demanded to see some ID, since someone who orders a drink like that sounds like someone who has never been in a bar before. ["That reminds me of the time my brother Mr. Stupidhead ordered a 'Tai Mai.' In spite of the fact that it's actually called a Mai Tai, not to mention the fact that I promptly started giggling hysterically and blew his cover, the waitress actually brought his underage ass the drink. Anyhow." -- Sars] And all you college kids out there, make sure to tip your bartenders well. Because if you think the bartender doesn't notice the cheapskates when there's a big crush of people against the bar, you're wrong. And it will take you longer to get served the next time you're ordering drinks, unless you're a cute girl, and if you stiff the bartender, don't be surprised if your next drink doesn't seem to have a full ounce of alcohol. Yes, my friends and the big tippers and the cute girls tended to get a little extra alcohol spillage in their drinks. Sue me, I'm only human. It's not fair, but life's not fair. And I know many bars now have that spout thing that dispenses an exact ounce, but bartenders will always have ways to screw the people who stiff them.

Where was I? Oh yeah, Jack leaves, and BG w/ BS starts yammering on and repeating the dialogue he just had with Jack before Dana arrived. "At first I thought it was interesting that I was watching them on television and they're also standing right over there," which doesn't sound terribly interesting to me (or to Dana, judging by the look on her face). She says the show is live a

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