Monday, 17 October 2011

Things I Wish I Knew Before Being on a Reality TV Show

That’s right people.  Your Wendy is a TV star!  Well, I don’t know if being on a Canadian cable TV reality show would make one a TV star, but at least I should qualify as TV space junk.  I told you TV was going crazy!
As my episode has now aired, I am finally allowed to blog about my experiences in front of the camera.  But first let me say that although the show will have aired by the time this is posted, it has not yet aired at the time I am writing this.  Therefore, while all of the crazy shit I am about to tell you totally happened, I am not sure how much/which parts of the 18+ hours of filming we did will be included in the 22 minute final product.  So please know that even if you did not see some of what I am about to describe to you, it definitely took place.  And if you did get to see these events unfold, all the better; maybe you will finally believe that I actually did get banned from Boston Pizza... and the park... and the grocery store... I could go on, but you get the point.
Our adventure started back in April when, ironically enough, I was writing my TV is Slowly Going Crazy post.  One evening my husband came to me with a newspaper article in hand about a new TV show that was looking for couples to participate.  Knowing me as he does, he then used a combination of reverse psychology and flattery to convince me to write the essay required in order to get an audition.   Apparently I am a better writer than I think I am because the casting agent called us next day.   Either that or they were just desperate.
The show itself takes regular people (supposedly me and Edward) and presents them with two different investment opportunities.  Before you fall asleep, I`m not talking boring old stocks and bonds, people.  I am talking horse racing, wine collecting, comic book selling, and celebrity charity event opportunities.  We picked one and invested our own money in it, while the host of the show (a semi-famous ex-dragon you might know) invested his money in the other investment.  The cameras then followed us and the entrepreneurs through the next 30 days, at the end of which time we found out how much money everyone made.     What more could you want out of a TV show?  It even has a catchy opening theme song!  
So bust out some popcorn and margaritas and settle in cause here comes the Things I Wish I Knew Before Being on a Reality TV:
1.  My go-to babysitter was going (back) to work – Damn you Alice for wanting to be all productive and not in debt.  Couldn`t you just feed your kid Kraft Dinner and shop at Value Village like the rest of us?  If you had only forgone your career I would not have had to creep the contact information of the people I met in the line at Tim Horton’s just to send out mass emails begging for a babysitter.  I would like to formally apologize to all those whom I annoyed by sending out an incessant barrage of increasingly pathetic babysitter requests.  I hope that my new-found TV space junk status will make you want to give me a second chance.  I would also like to thank those 2 friends who had pity on a friendless, relative-less out-of-towner and took on the task of babysitting my kids (we all know what a dangerous task that can be).  I thank you from the bottom of my heart; and don’t worry- you are not the first people my children have tricked into putting them in the fridge, and I am sure you won’t be the last. 
Unfortunately, there were at least two occasions for which we could not arrange to have someone watch the kids.  Hence how my children ended up at our on-camera lunch meeting with the entrepreneur we chose.  For those of you who may not be familiar with the calamity that results when you attempt to confine a 3 & 1 year old to a 4ft area for more than 5 minutes, let me explain we were lucky that the only incident that took place was when Simba suddenly disappeared under the table in a manner reminiscent of Wile E. Coyote falling off a cliff.  If you watch the footage closely you will probably see the little puff of smoke and everything.  As you can imagine, this caused me to immediately jump in the air throwing Prince off my lap and sending French fries flying through the air in order to retrieve my other,  now accordion-shaped, child from under the table.  So the next time someone begs you to babysit for them, take pity and help them out or else they may also end up with a child that resembles a musical instrument. 
2.  Never let a makeup artist put lipstick on you against your will.  And do not try to make conversation with your makeup artist while they are ‘making’ you.  Otherwise you may accidentally insult said makeup artist by telling them what a cute grandchild they have when the child in question is in fact not so grand, and you WILL end up looking like the whore of Babylon.   Oh, and while we are on the subject of appearances, always make sure that your outfit looks good from behind – you never know when your husband will make a dramatic exit and you will be forced to chase him down, thereby revealing your mom-bum to all of America.  I swear it was the pants, people.  I actually have a very nice ass.
3.  Prince is allergic to Amoxicillin – If only I had known this tidbit of medical data prior to shooting, I would have made sure that he wasn’t prescribed this medication 2 days before we were set to shoot the kids scenes, thereby rendering him very itchy by the time the big day came.  Aside from constantly having to reassure the crew that he did not have chicken pox, and shoving mittens on his hands between takes, it worked out pretty well in the end.  He ended up receiving the Gemini award for his performance of a non-itchy child in a reality show and he is now in talks to be in the next Tom Cruise movie. 
4.   My husband is a Drama Queen – Apparently I have been forcing Edward to watch too many episodes of The Bachelor.  The very first day of filming he pulled a total Gia move and stormed off set, not once but twice.  I am still unsure what happened to so upset the man who doesn’t bat an eyelash at having his living room destroyed by pint-sized hoodlums.  But if you look closely at my face when he leaves, I am pretty sure I am smiling because I totally expected Ashton Kutcher to jump out from behind the door and tell me I had just been punked.  But let’s look on the bright side – I may not have got to meet Ashton, but Edward is now up for a role on Days of Our Lives.  And sorry Ashton, but I’d rather hang out with E.J. Dimera anyway.
Due to the already exceptional length of this post, I do not have time to tell you about all the many other things I learned from this experience.  For example, never quote country songs when there is a camera pointed at you, wait to drink the free wine until after you do your on camera interviews and don’t drive a Benz if you want to convince people you need more money.   But don’t worry, I won’t let all this fame and fortune go to my head.  At the end of the day I am still the same ol’ Wendy who has to change poopy diapers for a living.  Now I just have to fend off the paparazzi while I do so.  Ah, being TV space junk is not all it’s cracked up to be...

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