When the good people at Cerebral Palsy Foundation asked if I’d host a pizza party to promote last night’s Oscars party episode of Speechless, I was a little uneasy, my inner punk rock voice piping up, warning me against becoming a corporate tool. But I watch the show myself, and enjoy it immensely, as do my daughters, who appreciate not only the hilarity of Minnie Driver as the maniac disability advocate mom, but the intricate and well drawn social dynamics between the siblings. And I do appreciate ABC for airing a raw and irreverent comedy about a family that looks a lot like ours on prime time TV. And, not the least importantly, I do like a party. So I said yes.
My directions were this: I would get a box of tee shirts and have my guests wear them and I would take pictures of them in their Speechless gear watching the Oscars party episode and “live blog” about it. What happened is that the tee shirts ended up in a UPS depot in Long Island and we couldn’t watch the Oscars episode due to technical difficulties. So I dutifully taped the Oscars poster, which did arrive, to the wall, and we pretended to watch that episode while really watching the pilot, which proved to be such a hit that we watched the Alpaca episode, too.
This picture is probably the best of my promotional attempts: pizza, smiling girls, glossy poster of Jimmy Kimmel.
But how do you “live blog” once you start kicking back with your friends and drinking a glass or two of wine? Most of my pictures looked like this:
Feeling my distinct lack of promotional savoir faire, I thought well, I’ll just get the kids to explain why they liked Speechless. Their words will be better than mine anyway. My daughter’s friend Amelia gamely stepped up to my i-phone and spoke about how funny Speechless was, and how it showed that “different” wasn’t really that “different” Her words and delivery were perfect. But I didn’t capture any of it because I had pressed the “photo” button instead of “video.”
Oh well. We will watch the Oscars episode tonight. And in spite of my goofs, I count the night as a success. Not only did we have fun, but also one of my guests texted me afterwards saying that her son, who is on medication to help him with his own language difficulties, looked up Speechless the moment they got home and started to watch.