537px-HaroldRamisOct2009If you want to know a little more about Harold Ramis, the widely admired comic actor-writer-director who debuted in the 1970s on the classic comedy show SCTV (Second City Television), the comedian Norm MacDonald (my favorite contemporary comic) has tweeted an interesting and rather impressive reminiscence about meeting Ramis for the first time.

Storify has the full (brief) anecdote; here’s a little sample:

  1. I have only been on 4 auditions in my life. Only once has a director asked to meet with me. It was Harold Ramis.
  2. I was living in New York, working on Saturday Night Live, and I was told by my agent Harold Ramis wanted to meet with me about a role.
  3. Growing up in Canada, we al knew Ramis, of course, from SCTV. He was the station manager Moe Green and, of course, Crazy Legs Hirschman.
  4. My part was a handyman but I knew I’d never get it. I never got any auditions. I can’t act.
  5. Normally, I would never waste everyone’s time by reading but Mr. Ramis was willing to fly me all the way to Los Angeles and put me up.
  6. We went into an office and we had a great chat about his time with all the comedy giants he’d worked with during the comedic revolution.

  7. “No”, said Mr. Ramis, “You wouldn’t be right [for the part]. It’s for an older man. We’ll cast a character actor”. “Oh”, I said “Ok”

  8. [Ramis said,] “I like you on the show, Norm, and I just wanted to meet you. I know you live on the West Coast, so i thought you could use a plane ticket.”

  9. After lunch he shook my hand and said he hoped we could work together sometime. He made me very happy. I don’t know why he did but he did.