Funny how dreams can kickstart the ol’ creative juices. Last night’s dream went like this: Steve Carlson and I had just been hired by a TV network to start developing a new show. (Apparently they saw last month’s Third Degree piece on the Features page.) We came into this big white meeting room and were told the show would be about a role-playing game expert named Carl and a puppet named Archie, who got into sitcommish squabbles with Carl. After our first suggestion, “Who Wants To Get Killed First?” was rejected, Steve and I tried our only other title, the somewhat underwhelming “Archie and Carl.” They didn’t like that either, so we broke for lunch to think of more ideas. Along the way we ended up in some random city shopping district, where we were dazzled by a winter coat that used a thin sheet of leather surrounded by goose down to make for a warm yet thin coat. “But look at how THIN it is!” I kept saying. Unfortunately it was mid-June in my dream just at it is in the waking world, so the coat was useless. We went to a jazz club to kill the rest of the lunch hour, and when we came back from lunch we hadn’t thought of any new titles. Steve ad-libbed, “Uh, how about ‘Jazz Club’?” and the executives loved it. Then I woke up.

Like I said, nothing like a good dream to get one’s creativity in gear. Look for our new sitcom “Jazz Club,” starring a roleplaying gamer named Carl and his cranky puppet Archie, sponsored by Thin Winter Coats, Ltd, next month.