Season One: Episode Nine
Andre the Giant visits a Spanish tapas bar.
A new company offers full “fraud kits” for people who want to pretend to be successful.
A new “Twilight Zone” episode features a guy who aims to make civil rights movements and other people’s identities all about himself.
Michael: Hey guys, welcome back to Ted and Michael Read Sketches Into Microphones. I’m Michael Paul Smith.
Ted: And I am Ted O’Gorman.
Michael: And I am the enthusiastic one. (Pause) Exactly. Our first sketch needs really no background, so…
Ted: Wait, Mike Mike, you’re...you’re giving it background.
Michael: I’m giving it background by saying…
Ted: Just by saying...you don’t need background, just let it...if it doesn’t need background, just let it go.
Michael: Can I say I hope they enjoy it or is that implied also? That’s implied also.
Ted: That’s kind of implied as well.
Michael: I have nothing to say, you guys. So just listen to it.
“Andre at the Tapas Bar”
V.O: And now we present, Andre the Giant at a Spanish tapas bar.
OG: I’ve only had three bottles of wine and twelve plates of this little-food. Where are the normal portions? I don’t understand how anyone could be full. But for me it is so hard… I am a giant and I am sooo hungry.
OG: Excuse me? Miss? Ma’am? Sir? Miss? Ma’am? She hears me. I know she hears me. Why am I being ignored? I’m sitting on three stools!
OG: Sometimes when I go to a steakhouse I can look at the menu and tell the waiter, “Hey waiter, bring me four of these steaks. And I will eat and no longer be so hongry.” But tonight I am still very hongry.
OG: Oh my God, I feel so terrible I just looked at the baby at the other table and I thought, maybe if he was triplets I could eat them and be full. I’m a monster. But sooo hungry.
OG: In my mind I am as small as a normal man. I can fit through doors, use a regular sized seat and not use a hole in the ground as a toilet. But in reality I am so big. Hey pretty lady!
Waitress: Hello sir, how can I help you?
OG: Can we please have more of this tiny food? I’m so hungry. Do you know when you get to the end of a bag of chips and tip the whole bag into your mouth to get the crumbs? Well that’s me. With the whole bag. It all feels like crumbs when you are this big.
Waitress: We have house made Spanish potato chips. There’s four chips to an order.
OG: Ok. How much for the kid in the high chair?
“Success Fraud Kit”
V.O: Hey recent, and not so recent, college grads! Are you tired of judgemental looks from your parents when you try to inflate your limited career prospects? Are you frequently fighting the urge to blame their entire generation for ruining the middle class? Have the words: “Mom, you bought your house for $25,000 and paid it off while working as a cashier. That shit’s not gonna happen anymore” crossed your mind more times than you can count? Well fear not. Enjoy your free dinners and laundry with your parents, while basking in nothing but their pride and admiration, with the new Tyburn Industries “Successful Child” Fraud Kit. For just six easy payments of $19.99, we’ll send you all you need to give your parents plenty to brag about to their friends, and keep them pleasant and off your back. Once the fraud kit arrives, be sure to invite your parents over. What they’ll find are no less than three weeks of well-worn Wall Street Journals strewn about your apartment. You’ll also receive a used day planner filled with appointments, which will also come in handy when you don’t wanna go to lunch.
Mom: Honey, you wanna go to lunch?
Son: Sorry mom, I’ve got Terrence at noon. Look at my planner. It’s right there. See? Look. Wanna see?
Mom: I believe you.
Son: No, but it’s right there. See?
Mom: I see!
V.O: Your kit will also include: brochures for luxury cars, a large bottle of Old Spice after shave, an even larger bottle of Tre Semme hair gel, business cards with your name and “Professional Ass-Kicker” printed on them, a locked briefcase filled with shredded paper, several pairs of suspenders, a Free Masons traditional robe that you can hang in a prominent location as though you just got it back from the dry cleaners.
While your parents are over, Fraud Kits will even supply a trained actor to call you pretending to be an aggressive headhunter that wants to recruit you. And don’t worry, if your parents ask you if you still need some walking around money, your answer is simple.
Son: Actually, yeah thanks. All my money is tied up in mutual funds right now. So I’m not too liquid at the moment.
V.O: Fraud kits. Buy BEFORE you lie.
“Twilight Zone: Identity Crisis”
Rod Serling: Submitted for your approval. A tale of progress halted, of identity hijacked. Of courageous honesty stolen and weaponized. Simms Chemical Corporation was a cheerful, boring place to work. Job security and steady paychecks were provided by the third-generation CEO; Franklin Simms. But mid-level associate Frank Wainright: a straight, white, cis-gendered 5 feet 9 inch tall man, who never has had or ever will have a real problem in his life, is soon to step off the elevator. When he arrives at the twelfth floor of the Simms building, he will bring with him an agenda… and The Twilight Zone.
Simms: Ok everybody, let’s settle down. Thank you. And thank you all for coming in a few minutes early today. This shouldn’t take too long to explain and I hope I have your cooperation.
Todd: What’s up Mr. Simms? Are more layoffs coming?
Sheila: Oh, God. I hadn’t even thought of that.
Gabe: Well what did you think it was?
Sheila: I don’t know, I just thought...maybe we were doing inventory early this year or something.
*All three workers start arguing/prognosticating with increased worry.*
Simms: Everybody please calm down. No this isn’t about layoffs. This is about a direction this company has always taken. When my grandfather founded Simms Chemical Corporation in 1949, he wanted to manufacture automotive lubricants that could be made right here in America. But he also had a bolder purpose. Simms’ Chemical was one of the first companies in the region to hire African Americans. And consequently, I’m proud to say, we are one of the coolest companies in the area.
Sheila: What’s that supposed to mean?
Simms: My point is, that since our founding, we have grown to be the largest employer of minorities in the Southwest. We also embraced the LGBTQ community before it was fashionable to do so. And that's because we’ve always believed that this company is more than just dollars and cents. So today, we’ll take the next step.
Gabe: Gender neutral bathrooms. I like it, it’s about time we step into the 21st century.
Sheila: It might take some time to get used to but I think we should give it a try. I don’t want to make anyone uncomfortable for their gender identity.
Simms: People, please let me finish. While gender neutral bathrooms are something the board and I are considering, this isn’t about that. We only have a few moments. Frank, or more specifically the person we used to refer to as Frank is going to make an announcement today. So lets be kind and understanding. I only had a brief email exchange with him about this. I’m not clear on all the details myself. Let’s just be open-minded and let’s give him our attention.
Simms: Ok, he just got off the elevator.
Simms, Todd, Sheila, Gabe: (Over-enthusiastically) Good morning, Frank! You’re looking well, etc.
Frank: Hi...um, was I supposed to come in early today for a meeting? I’m sorry if I’m late.
Simms: No, Frank. I was just giving everyone a heads up that you had something important to say. The floor is yours.
Frank: Wow, I didn’t expect this to happen first thing in the morning. I don’t know that I’m prepared.
Simms: If you’d rather put this off until you’re settled in, I understand. Folks, let’s reconvene after lunch.
Frank: No, this is good. I finally get to face this thing. Be brave Frank.
Sheila: Frank we love you and we have your back.
Todd: We got you Frank.
Frank: Thanks, Sheila. Todd. I now identify...as a man...with an unusually large penis.
Gabe: What’s that now?
Frank: Going forward, if you’d like to refer to my penis, there are a couple terms I’d prefer you to use. Monster dong, King Dong, Lord Hardwick, Pants Python, Sexcalibur, Commodore E.J. Pickens, Maximus Decimus Meridius Penazeus, or the evergreen: Huge Cock.
Sheila: But we still call you Frank?
Frank: Yes...in a way. Let's say you have to transfer a call to my desk, you might say: “Right away-I’ll transfer you to Monster Dong Frank.” This will keep me from being confused with other Franks in the office.
Simms: But you’re the only Frank who works here.
Frank: (Interrupting) Any other guys named Frank who happen to be in the office. This approach allows you to choose the metaphor that best suits your preference when referencing my enormous penis.
Gabe: This may be over the line, but do you actually have a large penis, or...?
Frank: Over the line?! You’d need to put your car in reverse for twenty minutes just to get near the line again, Gabe! I identify as a man with an enormous and even threatening-sized member. If I pulled the girthy and lengthy penis, that I identify as having, out of my pants right now, I’d break this oak table in half. Of course, I won’t do that because I don’t identify as a man who has splinters in his enormous johnson. THAT would be absurd. Do I actually have a big dick? You’re a son of a bitch you know that, Gabe?
Gabe: Well shit, I didn’t mean to…
Frank: You may appear to be an accountant, but if you tell me you identify as an astronaut, then I’d have to respect that. I’d have to start going “Ksssh” before addressing you. And if you started addressing me as “Houston”, I’d have to roll with it.
Sheila: Frank, gender identity is about people’s true identity. They’re born with it. It takes courage for them to speak up and make the changes that feel right for them. They speak up in spite of pressure from family, friends, employers…
Gabe: (To Frank) This is just you wanting to form some kind of...vanity narrative. Frank, this is pathological. You’re sick.
Frank: Is that so, Gabe!? That sounds a lot like anti-tolerant behavior to me! And Sheila--you don’t know what you’re talking about, either.
Gabe: Call me intolerant if you want. Cause you’re right. I’m not tolerant of you.
Todd: I’m not doing any of this, Mr. Simms. And I don’t know that I have to.
Simms: Ok, ok. Frank, it seems like some of the people here will need a little time to adjust. Now before you all leave; Frank and I discussed some behavioral changes around the office that he politely requests you consider if and when you encounter him. Hopefully they’ll make things a little easier for everyone.
Frank: Yes, I’d appreciate it if you all got into the habit of acting like my penis was something that you had to physically avoid. For instance, if we’re at the copier and I step behind you, I’d appreciate it if you act like, even at a considerable distance, my penis could have invaded your personal space. In which case, you’d have to move up a little more, or turn your body at a sharper angle to maneuver past it. If I approach your desk to talk about an account, at least once during the conversation you should quote unquote, “glance the pants.” Maybe gasp. Try adjusting your seat to increase the distance. Let's say there’s a few of us in the elevator; someone should comment on the elevator’s weight limit and their concern that the heft of my penis could push us over said limit. The rest of the group could express concern about the elevator snapping loose from its cables, thereby sending us to a terrible crushing death inside the elevator shaft. This would be followed by someone acknowledging the irony that my crushing shaft is what might cause us to get crushed inside a shaft. I don’t know, I don’t want to tell you how to behave. Play jazz with it. I’m just here to tell you that I’ve been struggling with this for a while. I’d appreciate your support. Just like the support I require for my ankle spanker.
Simms: I think we can leave it here for now. Frank’s requests might be a little tough to swallow, but he’s given us a lot to take in.
Gabe: (Chuckles slightly) I’m sorry, is no one going to…?
Frank: Don’t you dare, Gabe. Shut it. Inappropriate.
Simms: Let’s finish that thought, Gabe. “You’re right…”
Gabe: (Reluctantly) You’re right...Monster Dong Frank.
*Simms politely applauds*
Simms: Great, Gabe. Just great. What a breakthrough.
Frank: Thank you, Gabe. That means a lot.
Simms: Alright everybody. Let’s have a great day, and manufacture the best automobile lubricants that we can.
*A phone is heard in the distance.
Frank: That’s my phone. Thanks so much, everybody.
Sheila: What in the hell just happened?
Todd: Twenty bucks the guy’s hung like a wood nymph.
Gabe: I’m sure he is.
Sheila: I know he is.
Todd and Gabe: Wait, what? Etc.
Sheila: I thought you all knew about that.
*Todd, Sheila, and Gabe continue bantering as we fade out*
Serling: The best laid plans of mice, and men, and Frank Wainright. The average man in the average office with the grossly above-average insecurity. Frank Wainright could have just bought a Corvette. Instead, he became responsible for taking the interpersonal chemistry of the Simms Chemical staff, and making it all about himself. Thanks to Frank and his vanity, that chemistry is just a tiny part of a smashed landscape. Just a piece of the rubble. Just a fragment of the entire gender identity movement that Frank has deeded to himself and re-purposed for his own ends. Mr. Frank Wainright. In the Twilight Zone.
Michael: Ooh man, I just got chills. Spooky.
Ted: Yeah. Creepy stuff.
Michael: Ted, I have a dedication. Can I?
Ted: Mike. Please. Please. I love these.
Michael: Ted, I’d like to dedicate this episode to a former roommate of mine (who shall remain nameless)
Ted: His name is (reacted).
Michael: Ok I’m so glad Gillian has the final edit on that. But this roommate of mine
once went to bed early one night, and Ted and I were hanging out. At which time, Ted snuck into his room, threw aside his body pillow, and yes-he used a body pillow-and got under the covers right where the body pillow was. And then Ted observed this roommate sit sideways on the bed, swing his legs over like an old man and lay down and got fully comfortable before Ted sprung into action and the scream I heard from the next room is legendary. And that’s the only thing that I witnessed personally-was the scream.
Ted: You didn’t witness the fear in his eyes that I saw. It was...it was great. Mike I’ve got another dedication for you.
Michael: Oh, let me hear it.
Ted: So this episode is dedicated to the many types of fruit snacks available in grocery stores. Thank you fruit snacks for keeping us from purchasing the healthier and less processed version of you… real fruit.
Michael: Real fruit’s not shaped like sharks, or other animals.
Ted: That’s right.
Michael: I haven’t done this in a while. So stay tuned for outtakes and for our fancy outtro. And we have a new episode next Wednesday, and you can hear me on my wife, our producer, Gillian Pensavalle’s podcast, “The Hamilcast” from time to time, and you can follow her on Twitter @thehamilcast.
---Andre at the Tapas Bar---
Andre: Oh my God I feel terrible! I just looked at the baby at the other table and he looked like a cartoon chicken. With those weird little chef hats on the legs.
Andre: Maybe if he was triplets, I could eat them and be full. AAAAAAAARGH! I’m a monster! But still so hungry.
Gillian: Ted and Michael Read Sketches Into Microphones was written by Michael Paul Smith and Ted O’Gorman, with some room for improvisation because this is a comedy podcast guys. We’re not tied to the page. The podcast was produced by me, Gillian Pensavalle, and edited by me and Michael Paul Smith. You can subscribe everywhere you get your podcasts, and we’d really really appreciate it if you rate and review us on apple podcasts. Those reviews help a lot, and to be honest, you don’t wanna be on Ted’s bad side. Follow the guys on twitter @tedandmichael; individually @tedogorman, @mpsmithnyc, and use the hashtag #tedandmichael on all the things. For love notes and hate mail, use email@example.com. Visit www.tedandmichael.com for episodes and full credits, including voice over actors and music tracks.
Thanks again for listening. Stay weird, friends.