I’ll admit that TV has always fascinated me. When I had early ambitions of becoming an actress, I had my whole career plotted out…
I’d start off as a young ingénue on a popular soap opera. Small films and bit parts would trickle in until I had my breakthrough role in an indie film. Then, I’d become a leading lady eventually winning an Oscar for my heart wrenching performance of something that was truly heart wrenching . After a few more solid roles, I’d get tired of the grind and settle down into a nice weekly hour long drama series.
What really happened was that I minored in Theater but was too afraid to ever pursue anything, even on the side.
But my love as a performer still reigns supreme. I’m not sure that I’d want to be in the movies (I would entertain offers though) or that I’d want to be performing on stage. I don’t think my nerves could handle any of that.
Instead, I settle for a few silly videos written and produced by and starring me. My views are low but my satisfaction is high.
Every once in a while, I do get an out of the ordinary media opportunity. For example, I once joined a friend of mine on the TV runway when we brought our children for us all to showcase summer fashion from Old Navy.
And when I moved to Maryland in 2012, I had an out of the blue request to make an appearance on a Washington, DC station talking about the healthiest food products of the year.
I was nervous before every single opportunity but excited when it was all said and done, even though it’s usually way more work than it looks.
Back in November, I had a different opportunity come my way. I was asked if I was interested in being on the Dr. Oz show.
Knowing my background now, you can imagine that my first thought was YESYESYES. Where do I sign up? When do you need me? And can we talk about a possible talk show for me?
Turns out they were recruiting for a segment called “Am I Normal or Nuts?” They had found me through a video I did about collecting way too many stuffed animals. I think originally they were going to paint me as the crazy cat lady of the internet.
The request evolved into questions about more quirks I might have. Do I have a recurring dream? Do I have a song stuck in my head?
That last one hit struck a chord with me. I actually do have a song going through my head most of the time. It’s a little maddening, even if it’s a song I like. So off I went to New York and here’s what resulted.
- Producers have hard jobs. They have to coordinate all the content for one show and the amount of energy that goes into one tiny segment is amazing. I traveled to NYC for 2 days of filming, went through hair and make up, stressed over wardrobe, all for 3 minutes of fame during the opening 10 minute segment.
- Bright colored clothes are required, even for the audience members. No black, no white, no patterns. Jewel tones with small (re: quiet) necklaces are perfect even though that’s exactly the opposite of what I would really wear.
- For most shows you do your own hair and makeup although for the Dr. Oz show they did “fix” my hair (which made it look horrible) and caked on some make up (which actually looked pretty good).
- Most of the footage ends up on the cutting room floor. You’ve probably heard this but it’s true. We spent 3 hours doing filming “in the field” the day before the show. I think less than 30 seconds of the footage was used.
- There’s no rehearsal time. We went over the general flow of the segment with one of the producers but I never actually met Dr. Oz. I walked onto the set about 30 seconds before the camera started rolling. Dr. Oz came over, squeezed my hand, said hello, and off we went.
- There’s not a lot of reality in reality shows. While there may not be an actual rehearsal, you better believe we’re coached on exactly what to say.
Despite my lack of star treatment, I still had a great excuse to spend two days in NYC. I met some really fun women and gained experienced on a national television show. But I feel I need to clarify a few things.
I AM NOT NUTS.
The lovely woman who appeared on the show right before me had an issue where she incessantly picks her scabs. And she was “normal.” Even she didn’t think it was normal but that’s what Dr. Oz’s “expert” said. But having songs stuck in my head makes me nuts?
Let’s be honest. I may be nuts but not for the reasons she gives.
So after all that, was it worth it? Sure! I had fun, saw Jenny McCarthy leave the studio, and gained a little national exposure for my nuttiness. Would I do it again? Probably not. I haven’t had any offers of fame or fortune and I really don’t want my hair to look like that. Ever again.
Have a burning question that I didn’t answer? Leave me a comment and I’ll spill whatever you want to know.