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Starting on Friday on ABC, the hit series Shark Tank starts its 4th season, and I’m pretty excited about it. No other show on television (with the exception of Canada’s Dragon’s Den) manages to combine business and entertainment in such a compelling way. Sure, Jim Cramer tries to be entertaining, but we’re laughing at him, not with him.
Just like when I managed to score backstage passes to watch a taping of Dragon’s Den, I was invited to Los Angeles to take in a taping of Shark Tank. It’s truly a shame how the wonders of TV editing take a half an hour pitch and condenses it down to only the juiciest parts that’ll fit between the commercial breaks. There’s some good stuff that doesn’t make it past the cutting room floor. It’s up to me to make sure my readers get an accurate look at what really happens during a Shark Tank pitch. Let’s do it.
(Pitcher walks into the Tank, jumping a bit as the doors automatically open for him)
Pitcher: Hi, I’m John Smith from Delicious Cupcakes Inc., and I’m looking for $100,000 for 20% of my business.
Daymond John: So that means your company is worth $500,000.
Kevin O’Leary: That’s right, Captain Obvious.
Daymond: Hey! We have an American audience. They’re not very good at math.
Mark Cuban: WHOO! 2011 NBA CHAMPS DALLAS MAVERICKS BABY!
Robert Herjavec: Hey, I like cupcakes. What’s your company?
Pitcher: Uhh, we make cupcakes. Really good cupcakes. Would you guys like to try some?
(Pitcher hands out cupcakes. Everyone tastes them and start murmuring about how good they are.)
Kevin: These cupcakes are terrible. What are your sales?
Pitcher: We sold $476,000 worth last year and are on pace to sell $600,000 this year, with a $200,000 profit.
Mark: WHOO! CUPCAKES!
Barbara Corcoran: These cupcakes are fantastic, and -
(Barbara disappears in a puff of smoke, is replaced by Lori Greiner)
Kevin: Finally! Barbara has been replaced with someone who isn’t hideous.
Lori: You still have no chance with me, baldy.
Kevin: I take that as a challenge. How much? I can afford it.
Daymond: Would you two stop flirting for two seconds? I have a question for the man.
Pitcher: Agreed. What’s the question?
Daymond: Do you sell any of your cupcakes to black people? I’m not sure they’d like these cupcakes.
Robert: Why not?
Daymond: NOBODY UNDERSTANDS BLACK PEOPLE LIKE I DO. CHOCOLATE MAKES US A LITTLE NERVOUS.
Mark: WHOO! That’s weird.
Lori: Daymond, you are the whitest black guy in the entire world.
Kevin: What’s stopping your cook from stealing your cupcake recipe and selling it to Baskin Robbins?
Pitcher: Baskin Robbins doesn’t even make cupcakes.
Lori: Look at me. Does it look like I eat a lot of cupcakes?
Kevin: (panting) Baby, you are so hot. Do you like really rich bald assholes?
Lori: No, Kevin I don’t.
Robert: Lori, are you going to finish that cupcake?
Lori: Well, uh…
(Robert grabs the cupcake from her hand and stuffs it in his mouth)
Robert: I love these cupcakes!
Kevin: Enough with this. I’ll give you a deal. For $100,000 I want 89% of your company.
Pitcher: That seems like a lot.
Kevin: Don’t let greed cloud your judgement.
Daymond: Son, don’t take that deal. It’s ridiculous.
Pitcher: Don’t worry, I wasn’t going to -
Kevin: DAYMOND! How dare you get in the middle of my deal!
Daymond: Kevin, your deal was crap.
Kevin: Yeah, but he didn’t know that!
Lori: I’m out. Cupcakes would be too much of a temptation for my rockin’ bod.
Daymond: I’m also out. I think you were sending me a subliminal message by giving me a white cupcake.
Robert: Didn’t you pick your own cupcake?
Kevin: Have you reconsidered my offer?
Pitcher: No. It sucks.
Kevin: I forbid you to continue with this terrible idea. I’m out.
Mark: Hey pitcher, who’s your favorite NBA team?
Pitcher: Uh, the Lakers. I’m from LA.
Mark: I’m out.
Daymond: It all comes down to Robert. What are you going to do?
Robert: Hey pitcher, can I have another cupcake? I don’t want to buy lunch later.
Pitcher: Sure. What kind?
Robert: (Looks right at Daymond) Any kind except chocolate.
Kevin: Oh baby! Things are getting heated!
Daymond: Them’s fighting words, Herjevec!
(Chaos ensues. Kevin cops a feel from Lori in the melee)
Pitcher: Robert, do we have a deal?!
Robert: I’m out. I just like screwing with Daymond.
Mark: Wait! I’m back in!
Pitcher: Can you do that?
Mark: You can when you win the 2011 NBA CHAMPIONSHIP BABY! WHOO!
Pitcher: So $100,000 for 20% of the company?
Mark: Done. That’s less than the NBA fines me every week.