TV and movie writers are thrilled about their new contract and eager to get back to penning sophomoric TV shows that Americans crave. Union chief Hop Russell said, "They're sick and tired of writing their kids' term papers."
While not walking the picket line, most writers did their kids' homework, but had to dumb it down to make it look like a 14-year-old's work. It's not unlike the jobs they do when writing for TV shows and the movie industry, knowing Americans won't get half the clever dialogue or references.
"As long as we stick with the simple fart joke, we know we're on safe ground with the viewers," said long-time Hollywood writer Bill O'Poole.
"The hard part is layering one road-tested fart joke upon another to set up the big, room-clearing, payoff fart joke at the end. But that's why we ought to get paid the big bucks. Nobody knows the fart-joke industry better than the Writers Guild of America."
Writers said while they idled their time away, they produced the best-written to-do and grocery lists known to man.
"This will go down in history as the Golden Age of notes scribbled on a refrigerator greaseboard," Russell said.
Some, meanwhile, practiced their craft during dinnertime, spouting lightweight TV-show dialogue that they never got to write for characters, or delving into the possibility that Lily and Ted might've kissed in the "How I Met Your Mother" backstory.
Writers' spouses and significant others have reported going mad when their mates bark at them to "exit stage left at the end of the dinner scene," or to turn away from them during conversations so both of their faces will be looking into the "camera."
The biggest hurdle in the post-strike months will be winning back viewers who became comfortable with watching "Everybody Loves Raymond" and "King of Queens" reruns.
"American has an insatiable desire to live in the past," producer Tad Ulrich said.
Viewers, however, may flock to the new shows since many claim they never actually read a book, learned to paint nor drew closer to their drug-using, gun-brandishing gangbanger wannabe teenage children as simple-minded pop psychologists predicted for the strike period.
"We thought they'd break out of their TV-watching fog and become less de-sensitized to life around them," Dr. Paul Carter said. "But it turns out most of them just sat and stared at a blank wall or test pattern, or called the NBC Help Hotline to inquire about the health and well-being of Law and Order's Jack McCoy.
"Americans are so off their orbit because of the strike, they may actually elect a black or woman as their next president. That's not progress. They're just wildly confused. And when they're jarred back to reality after a full season of new shows, they're going to wonder why the hell they didn't vote for another seriously flawed, grumpy white guy."