I’ve always been fascinated with the creative process. As a kid, I read a lot of music magazines. Today, that interest extends to technology and even some Food Network shows. In between, I majored in philosophy, which technically means “love of wisdom.” In retrospect, I think the wisdom is OK but the ideas are the key. The Socratic method of refining and revising ideas through frank questioning by guys in togas is fine and necessary, but without the initial ideas — from systems of government to methods of cooking — the human species is no better than any other.
Sometimes, I wonder how a particularly offbeat idea survived the Socratic method. Every idea has to be pitched to become reality — even on a blog, the idea doesn’t really take off unless someone reads and appreciates it.
And so I sometimes picture the members of Kids in the Hall, pitching ideas for their fifth and final season, having some sort of conversation like this:
“OK — imagine a game show in which you’re suppose to feel an object with a pair of oven mitts and guess what it is.”
“Hmmmm. Could be interesting. So what happens?”
“Well, Scott could play an old contestant who’s not really aware of what’s going on. Mark could do his Darill character. And then we could have a young kid whose head is too small for the bucket.”
“Um … bucket?”
“Yeah — when you get an answer wrong, you wear a bucket with a sad face painted on. And we could introduce that when we return to the game after an interruption for a news bulletin about flooding on the Rhine, mixed in with some footage of hammerhead sharks.”
“Wait, wait … sharks? And why are they on the Rhine?”
“Oh, did I mention this is in Europe?”
“OK, I suppose we can get away with that. Might be one way to explain why it all seems so weird.”
“Yeah, and they’ll be speaking some language that falls somewhere between Dutch, German and gibberish.”
(long pause) “A whole sketch. In which language? German?”
“Not exactly. It’s sort of German, sort of Dutch. We’ll have a bunch of people counting the time remaining by clomping wooden shoes — let’s call them the Nederlander Foot Choir.”
(longer pause) “Sort of German, sort of Dutch?”
“Sure! I’ve even got a catch phrase.”
“A catch … in Dutch? German? … (sigh) … OK, what is it?”
“Und specifica, ut kunder meat?”
(blank stares) “Do you think our entire audience is high or something?”
I’m not sure what impresses me more — the open-mindedness of the other Kids in seeing just how funny this sketch was going to be or the devotion of some fan who took the time to transcribe the whole freaking thing phonetically.
Whatever your expectations are at this point, you won’t be disappointed. Here are The Kids in the Hall circa 1993 with “Feelyat!”: