Dan and Casey are sitting in a booth at Anthony's. Each of them have a drink in front of them.
Dan: So you don't think my nose is too big?
Casey: No, your nose is the right size. I think it's the rest of your head that's too small.
Dan: Thanks for caring.
Casey: It's what I do.
Dan: And did you ever notice me sweating profusely?
Dan: During our broadcasts.
Casey: No. Why?
Dan: Alyson keeps having to do some touch-ups on me, and she says its because I sweat a lot. I've recently noticed it, and I was wondering if it has been happening all along.
Casey: Maybe Alyson has a little crush on you.
Dan: Alyson? No.
Casey: I'm just saying that she is one shy woman. She doesn't get too involved in conversation- every answer consists of one or two words.
Dan: She did talk to me a little bit more tonight.
Casey: Maybe her way of getting close to you and striking up a conversation is to have an excuse to see you.
Dan: And the so-called problem with my makeup and alleged sweating.
Casey: It also gives her the opportunity to touch you.
Dan: Casey, all the women have to know that I'm a taken man.
Casey: When you are in a serious relationship, it makes you more desirable. You pose as a challenge to women because they want to see if you would be willing to let your guard down. It is a good judge of your character.
Dan: How do you know this?
Casey: I had my fair share of maidens approach me when I was married to Lisa.
Casey: Now that I've been divorced for over three years, I hardly have anyone approaching me.
Dan: Maybe they think you're too old.
Casey: I still look young.
Dan: Come on, Case. Charlie is almost a teenager. You chaperone their parties. You've reached the age when you need to be driving a mini-van back-and-forth between soccer practice and home.
Casey: Didn't this conversation start with you talking about your "larger than life" nose?
Dan: Yeah, but I'm feeling better now knowing that I'm not an old geezer who still listens to seventies rock.
Casey: It's the music of my generation.
Dan: It's the music of an old generation.
Dana joins the two as she sits next to Casey in the booth.
Dana: Sorry, I'm late guys.
Dan: How did the meeting with Isaac go?
Dana: How did you know-
Dan: Natalie told us.
Casey: And Danny told me.
Dana: Okay. The meeting was fine.
Dan: At least it wasn't bad.
Dana: It was bad.
Casey: What's wrong?
Dana: Well, the message Isaac conveyed wasn't exactly a positive one.
Dan: What are they going to do?
Dana: Isaac thinks they are going to have Sam Donovan working with us again.
Dan: Again? But our show has steady ratings.
Casey: Even without me at the anchor desk.
Dan: It just goes to show that you don't carry the network, my friend.
Dana: Isaac thinks we need to be more disciplined and efficient.
Dan: Okay. How are you and Isaac taking it?
Dana: We just have to take it.
Dan: Well, I think I need something stronger than a beer.
Dan gets up from the booth.
Dan: You want another, Case?
Casey: Yeah, I'll have another beer.
Dan: Dana? A three-olive martini?
Dana: Sure... no, wait. I'll just have some water.
Dan looks at Dana.
Dan: Are you feeling fine?
Dana: I'm just... I'm the designated driver tonight.
Dan: We're not going to get plastered, if that's what you're thinking. It's just a couple of drinks.
Dana: I'll just have some water.
Casey: She's fine, Danny.
Dan shrugs his shoulders and heads off to the bar. Dana leans up against Casey, and she places her head on his shoulder.
Casey: What are you thinking?
Dana: I'm thinking I've got to tell them.
Dana: When Isaac and I were talking about hiring some production associates, I almost blurted out that I was pregnant.
Casey: When were you planning on telling them?
Dana: It has to be pretty soon.
Casey: And you still don't want to talk about getting married?
Dana: There's too much going on right now to talk about marriage. In fact, my job is plenty. This baby is just going to complicate things.
Casey: Bringing a child into the world is supposed to make things more complicated. It's all about love and responsibility.
Dana: I know.
Casey: You're still upset about telling your mother.
Dana: Gee, Casey... my mother treated me like she was from the Harper Valley PTA. Not only did I tell my mother, but it also gave her the opportunity to remind me of all the other mistakes I've made in my sorry life.
Casey: It will be okay.
Dana: I don't want to talk about it anymore.
Dana: We really need some production associates.
Casey: Here he comes.
Dan comes back to the table and hands out the drinks.
Dan: A beer for Casey, and for Dana, some water from the freshest springs. It is garnished with cubed ice and a slice of lime.
Dana: Thanks, Danny.
Dan sits back in the booth and takes a sip from his drink.
Dan: There is a theory that men become more attractive when they are married or in a serious relationship.
Dana: To whom?
Dan: To other women- other single, available women.
Dana: Where did you hear that?
Casey: It's true. Women-
Dana: Wait. Did you hear this theory from Casey?
Casey: I did mention it.
Dana laughs harder.
Dana: That's crazy.
Casey: Look. Women like to go after men who are not available. It poses as a challenge to them. They tempt and try to break the will of these men. So few men are willing to commit to a relationship, that women view these "taken" men with higher regard.
Dana: So these women want these so-called "taken" men break off their current relationship and commit to them?
Dan: It's part of the challenge.
Dana: And what if these men resist the lure posed by these temptresses?
Casey: They become even more attractive.
Dana: So men, who are not currently interested in these women, are wanted because it is nearly impossible to get them.
Casey: Because the men are committed to the women in their lives.
Dana: Which explains men's fascination with supermodels.
Dan and Casey look at each other as Dana bursts out laughing.
Inside the conference room, most of the crew are waiting for the rundown meeting to begin. Natalie is checking over some notes attached to her clipboard, Bobbi is writing on some paper, Dan and Jeremy conduct small chat, Elliott stands against the wall, and Chris and Will discuss graphics to be used on a feature.
Dave enters the room.
Dave: Sorry, I'm late.
Natalie: The meeting hasn't started yet.
Dave: Where's Dana and Isaac?
Natalie: Isaac is another meeting. Dana should be coming soon.
Dana enters the conference room.
Dana: Okay, guys. Before we get started-
Natalie: Isaac left a note for you.
As Dana takes her seat, Natalie hands the note to her.
Natalie: What did Isaac suspect?
Dana looks at the note.
Dana: Damn. (looks at Natalie) Nothing Natalie.
Natalie: The note said his suspicions were correct.
Dana: And the note was addressed to me.
Natalie: I'm your associate producer. I'm second in command.
Dana: And the note wasn't meant to be bypassed over me.
Natalie: Then Isaac should have given you the note himself.
Dana: We'll talk about this later. Guys, there is something we need to discuss before we start with the rundown.
Elliott: Isaac is in another meeting.
Dana: Isaac is aware of what is happening. Over the next few days, we are going to have some changes.
Everyone looks surprised as Sam Donovan enters the conference room. He immediately sets his note book on the table and takes a seat.
Sam: What are we leading off with?
Dan: Time certainly flies.
Dana: Welcome, Sam. We're just beginning.
Sam: Good. Then everyone doesn't have to start over. What are we leading off with?
Natalie checks her notes.
Natalie: Umm... right now we're leading with the 4 Tampa Bay players injured in the accident.
Sam: Who's covering it?
Natalie: Jack Jankowitz is covering it. He's down there covering spring training.
Sam: Let's send Carrie down there instead. She's good at these stories.
Natalie: Who... who's Carrie?
Sam: That girl... she usually covers the more serious stories.
Sam: Whoever. Kelly does a good job. Let's not overburden Jackowitz-
Sam:-and keep him strictly with spring training. How's the footage?
Elliott: There's not much. We got footage of the wreckage earlier this morning. We've got interviews with some of the people at the club, plus we were going to have Jack talk with the medical staff at the hospital... unless you want Kelly to do that.
Sam: Let Jack do the research. Put Kelly in front of the camera.
Natalie: I thought you didn't want to overburden Jack.
Sam: Have you checked a weather report today?
Jeremy: I have.
Sam: It's going to rain on the western half of Florida. I don't think anybody will want to play baseball in that kind of weather, so I don't think Jack will be overburdened today.
Jeremy: There's a 70 percent chance of showers.
Sam: This is going to be a long-term story which is why I want somebody covering it full-time. We can use Jackowitz for one day.
Dana takes a deep breath.
Dana: I take it everyone has noticed that Sam will be helping us out with our show. I thought the changes were going to take place over the next few days.
Dana: My note from Isaac says it will take place over the next few days.
Sam: The last time I checked, the "next few days" also included today. Correct me if I'm wrong.
Everyone is quiet.
Sam: It's like taking off a band-aid. It's better to rip it off and get it over with instead of waiting around and taking your time getting it off.
Dana looks at her notes.
Dana: We have the playoff runs in the NHL and NBA. Carolina-Detroit looks like it will be our top game in the NHL.
Sam: We haven't moved on.
Dana: We've got the club accident. We'll get Kelly down there. What more do you want?
Sam: What segments are you going to include with it?
Dana: With it?
Sam: I expect you will have an interview with the witnesses and the medical team. I hope somebody talks with the club owner or with OHSHA.
Dana: I already assumed that.
Sam: Did anybody write that down?
Sam looks around the room.
Sam: Did anybody write down what Dana was assuming?
Bobbi raises her note pad.
Bobbi: I had written to check with the building inspectors.
Sam: Anybody else?
Nobody answers as Sam stands up.
Sam: I'm sure Dana hasn't had the opportunity to explain why changes are being made with your show.
Dana: I received a note from Natalie as I entered the room.
Sam: Everyone is thinking that I am hear to help raise your ratings.
Dan raises his hand.
Dan: I would like some credit for writing that down.
Sam: Let me see your notes.
Dan hands his note pad over to Sam. Sam checks it over and hands it back to Dan.
Sam: There were a couple of expletives in that.
Dan: Well, I consider it a form of shorthand.
Sam: Everyone is correct in thinking that I am here to raise the ratings of this show. The goal is to raise it 2 share points over the next three months.
Natalie: Excuse me? There were no water balloons.
Sam: Don't let it come to that.
Sam sits back down.
Sam: Are we ready to move on?
Dana glares at Sam.
Dana: Elliott? Make sure the injury count is correct at 37. Also, get a hold of Jack and ask him if he could get some statements from the victims' families. Three people were killed in this accident. Those three were not playing for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. I think it is only a sign of respect that we cover the whole story, not just focus on the athletes involved.
Elliott finishes writing down the information.
Elliott: Got it.
Dana: Now, we're ready to move on.
Dan is sitting in his office and typing at his computer. Kim walks in.
Dan: Hey, Kim. How's the world of "Sports Night" at dinnertime treating you?
Kim: Good. I heard Sam is on board with your show.
Dan: Yeah. There seems to be some kind of power struggle going on between Dana and Isaac and the network.
Kim: You know who is going to win that one.
Dan: Yeah. I know what you're here for, and I'm finishing up the piece on Sarah Hughes.
Kim walks over and stands behind Dan.
Kim: Great. How long is it?
Dan: It looks like two minutes.
Jeremy enters the office.
Jeremy: Hey, Dan. The Dodgers-Red Sox, the Braves split squad and Expos, and Indians-Phillies postponed their spring training games.
Dan: Thanks, Jeremy.
Kim: Will you have the piece ready for my show?
Dan: For you? I will have it done within the hour.
Kim: You're the best.
Dan: I know.
Jeremy and Dan watch Kim leave the office. Dan looks worried.
Dan: Did you see that?
Jeremy: Did I see what?
Dan: Right before Kim left, she rubbed her hand down my back.
Dan: I think she was flirting with me.
Jeremy: Because she touched you?
Dan: Yeah. She usually doesn't touch me like that.
Jeremy: She doesn't rub your back?
Dan: Well, she usually touches my arm or something. But I don't recall her ever rubbing her hand on my back.
Jeremy: And you're bothered by it?
Dan: I just think that because I'm in a serious relationship with Jo, it allows women to be more flirtatious or even try to win me over.
Dan: Jeremy? When you were engaged to Natalie, did women suddenly find you more attractive?
Jeremy: Because I was engaged to Natalie?
Dan: You didn't notice women being more flirtatious or trying to ask you out on a date?
Jeremy: No. Are women asking you out on a date?
Dan: No. There's a theory that attached men are more attractive to women because they are more elusive.
Jeremy: It's been proven?
Dan: Not exactly.
Jeremy: Then it isn't a theory.
Dan: Then what is it?
Jeremy: It's a hypothesis.
Dan: Whatever. I've recently noticed women wanting to make more contact and carry on conversations with me. I think some of them have a crush on me.
Jeremy: I think I may have found a problem in your hypothesis.
Dan: What's that?
Jeremy: If married, engaged, or committed men are so attractive and longed for by women, then why don't single men wear wedding rings to singles bars?
Dana is sitting at her desk, while Isaac stands beside it.
Isaac: That's the proposal the network is making.
Dana: All production associates are going to be interns?
Isaac: We've always used interns at this network.
Dana: Yeah, but they've been learning the job. They're gaining experience. They're not being relied upon to contribute in such a major way.
Isaac: Natalie was an intern and look how she turned out.
Dana: I had Natalie making sure there was enough paper in the fax and copy machines. I had her grabbing lunches and handing out memos. I had her getting files for me.
Isaac: What better way for an intern to learn on the job than to give them significant responsibility?
Dana: We only have them for a short time, and then we have to start the process all over again.
Isaac: Maybe they'll want to work for the network once we show them how our show is run.
Dana shakes her head.
Isaac: Be happy with any help the network offers. These people are coming here because they want to learn and work hard. They want to be here. They're not getting paid, so the best thing we can do for them is to teach and show them the way.
Dana: You're right.
Isaac: I wish we could hire people with prior experience, but you know and I know that people trying their hardest give the best results.
Dana: When are they bringing them in?
Isaac: This week.
Dana: They went over our heads? Isaac, that isn't right.
Isaac: They run the network they way they see fit. We have to deal with whatever proposals they send our way. If they want to give us interns to help with the show, then I applaud the fact that they are trying to help us out.
Dana: What good is an intern when you have them for three or four months? You show them the ropes, and by the time they have the hang of everything, it's time for them to go back to school. The network wants us to be more efficient, but how is that possible? How is that possible when we are having to train people all the time? We need to concentrate on keeping the people we have instead of relying on work habits and inexperience to help us create the show.
Isaac: It's what the network wants.
Dana: Yeah, but they better give me some darn good people.
Isaac: I would give them a chance.
Dana: If they send me some lazy bum, I'm sending them back to school.
Isaac: I hope you would.
Dana: Well, you can guarantee I will.