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#85 Thoughts on Final Approach

So I’m nicely ensconced in Seat 2-A on what’s been a relaxing flight. But as we’re on final approach to Cleveland Hopkins Airport I grow tense. This will be my first time meeting executives at a major toy company and I’m a little nervous.

I’m glad I had the opportunity to meet Judy Price, CBS’ VP of Children’s Entertainment. Meeting Judy was like meeting royalty. She really was “The Great and Powerful Sorceress of CBS”.

The thing about Judy – and it’s the thing about a lot of powerful people – is that she was a nice person; at least she was nice to me. She was welcoming and engaging with a new, young writer. She reminded me of the strongman in author Alistair MacLean’s novel, Circus. Of the strongman, MacLean said, and I paraphrase, “The strongman smiled because he had long since lost the need to frown.”

Judy was like that.

The plane’s tires screeched as they hit the tarmac and I couldn’t help but wonder what the Those Characters From Cleveland’s executives were going to be like. Would they be welcoming and engaging with a new, young writer as Judy

had been? Or would they be haughty, condescending and critical?

Unquestionably, they had the power to be whatever they wanted to be. In the 19th century, Lord Acton wrote, “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” If Judy Price was “corrupt”, she never showed it to me. She’d only been benevolent, encouraging and welcoming. I hoped Those Characters From Cleveland’s execs were cut from the same Royal Purple cloth as she was


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