Nick Offerman on Writing an Episode of ‘Parks and Rec’

Nick Offerman in "Parks and Recreation" (NBC)

Nick Offerman in "Parks and Recreation" (NBC)

Nick Offerman is always fun to talk to, even when he’s at a party his network is throwing and journalist types are swarming around him. All you need to do to get him warmed up is to talk to him about his woodworking and the desks he makes that look like George Nakashima made them himself. His current project is a coffee table for his co-star Rashida Jones.

“Frankly, I’d much rather talk about woodworking than TV,” he said with a laugh that you’d never hear from Ron Swanson. But the woodworking talk warmed him up to the point where he mentioned that he was writing an episode that is set to shoot in a couple of weeks. “I feel like a freshman compared to these guys (the writing staff). They’re just miles ahead.”

The plot? Let’s let Nick tell the tale: “Leslie (Amy Poehler) scores a big interview with sort of the Matt Lauer of Indianapolis, and the interview is called off, then it’s back on, and some hijinks end up ensuing that become a bit of a stumble.” In the b-plot, “Ron and April (Aubrey Plaza) help Andy (Chris Pratt) with his final in his women’s studies class, and Ron and Andy’s teacher end up having a little bit of an intrigue.”

The process of writing the episode was “really hard work, but so fun, sort of getting to play with these excellent toys and getting them to say what I want them to.” Would he do it again? “If they ask, sure. I hope they do.”

But nothing, with the possible exception of his wife, Megan Mullally — he says there is another story coming up for her character of Tammy II, but it may not work out for the spring because of her busy schedule — makes Offerman more passionate than wood. He felt especially proud when one of his homemade canoes was used during the shooting of a recent episode. “We shot some beautiful footage the other day of Ron Swanson paddling his canoe across a lake. I don’t have kids, but it’s like riding my kid piggy-back. ‘Check out this god damn strapping kid! I made it.'”

Watch Ron Swanson’s love affair with food here:

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