Okay, I had better speed through this, since I just got an email from HBO that the blog is needed sooner rather than later.
Also, I need to be a little careful with what I write. I shouldn't lose my mind and get too sexually graphic just in case a child should happen to read this blog-letter, which is unlikely of course, but not beyond the pale considering the nature of the Internet. One of the producers on the show was a little worried last week that I had perhaps gone too far with my description of breast-feeding, but since children are usually the main recipients of breast-feeding, I think it's all right. If I do have to discuss things of a sexual nature I will try to use vocabulary words that will fly over a child's head. But did that fly over a child's head?
Anyway, in this scene, Ray is - damn, this isn't easy - meditating in a way that only adults can meditate, and the end result of his meditation is to go into a urine cup.
I conceived of this whole scene because I think it's always an embarrassing challenge to urinate into a cup, and this made me wonder about men who go to fertility clinics, meditate, and fill up cups, though I wasn't sure what kind of cups they used. I asked Sam Sklaver, who was on my writing team, to find out what kind of cup is used for adult fertility-inclined meditation, and he's a whiz with the Internet and discovered that a basic urine sample cup is the preferred chalice for such an endeavor.
So Ray fills up such a cup, joins the dinner party, and says, after a little dance, "All that jizz!" Jizz, kids, is just a magical, happy thing, like dust from the stars above, and nothing to worry about or ask your parents about.
Anyway, this line, which I was very pleased with, came out of a collaboration between Zach Galifianakis and myself. It wasn't scripted and for several takes, when the camera wasn't on him, Zach was doing these great dance moves before putting the cup on the table, and it reminded me of Roy Scheider playing Bob Fosse in All that Jazz/ I then said to Zach, "When you finish the little dance, say, 'All that jism!'" Zach then improved on my suggestion and said, "All that jizz!" Jizz is much closer in sound and spelling to "jazz" than "jism" - thank you, Zach! - and I really love this moment in the show.
Another unscripted line that I really like is at the end of the scene when Ray says, "Goodbye, Picasso." I had our wonderful master of wardrobe, Daniel Lawson, put Zach in a striped shirt, which appealed to my eye. I thought it made Ray look like Picasso - there's some famous photo of Picasso in a striped, sailorish shirt - and then seeing him in the shirt gave me the idea to have him say the Picasso line, which is also an allusion to Michelle and Lisa's desire for an "artistic" baby.
Heather Burns, who plays Leah, is magnificent in this scene, and I love her girlish, spastic throw of the urine cup. All the actors were just great in this scene and it's one of my favorites of the whole season.