I don't know what YOUR idea of Purgatory is, but from my slice of the risers, it looks a lot like a press conference. Maybe that's because I've attended more electrified gatherings than most capitol punishment junkies. Sure, they're often thrilling in the movies: tense debriefings in which someone thinner, better dressed and more diabolical than any actual podium jockey reveals information crucial to the gauzy montage that soon follows. Not so in real life. No, most pressers pack about as much excitement as your last trip to the restroom. And unless you take a really wide stance, that's nothing to wrap a screenplay around. So while you zip up, allow me to unfurl the following Tenets of the Scrum:
Feeling a bit adventurous? Wanna look 'Continental'? Wife hide the iron? Go to work wearing something garish, wrinkled or reflective and you've guaran-damn-teed yourself a ticket to the undertaker's luncheon.
98% of the self-congratulatory pap uttered into a bank of microphones never. airs. anywhere. But let those batteries in your wireless die and dude with the suit's gonna start reciting coordinates to Osama's hidey-hole.
You can sneak into a theater. You can sneak into church. Pay the right people and you can even sneak into rehab. But strap half a TV station to your back and try to enter a press conference in progress unnoticed. Cannot be done.
After a few soundbites, one photog will invariably wiggle out of the scum and begin working the edges of the room for wide shots, reversals and cutaways. Ask us and we'll tell you we're just doing our job, but mostly we're just effin' with ya.
Most semi-circle summits are hastily-convened affairs; cop-talk confabs with scribbled digits and bare-bones production. To pull off a high-tech happening - complete with bad back-light, countless shout-outs and highly distracting background noise - you're going to need a highly-paid consultant.
Speaking of consultants, See You in Hell!