It was more than a quarter century ago, but the Royal Canadian Air Farce showed some remarkable kindness to a 15-year-old aspiring writer.
The Farce had come to Ottawa, and at the end of the performance, I ran to the front of the hall and buttonholed Don Ferguson, pressing a thick radio script into his hands. (It was an hour-long thing called “Incisors!” about giant mutant rodents attacking Ottawa. You begin to see what I mean about kindness.) He promised to read it.
Damned if a few weeks later, I didn’t get notes from Gord Holtam and Rick Olsen, inviting me to submit something a little, ah, shorter. I did, and over the next few months we honed two sketches that they eventually combined into one, which the Air Farce bought.
They invited me to the recording at the old Cabbagetown studio in Toronto. I was invited backstage afterward (the green room was, in fact, green) and for two days I felt like I owned the entire city.
These folks were my comic heroes, and to a person they were generous and welcoming — and seeing the troupe perform my sketch onstage was one of the best moments of my life.