I auditioned for Deal or No Deal yesterday. Six hours of standing in line got me 20 seconds in front of a casting director, two sore feet and an empty stomach (I skipped lunch).
The sad truth is, I really wanted on the game show. Seriously. Before I even knew about the audition, I put “aspiring Deal or No Deal contestant” on my MySpace page. Yes, I am lame.
For months I’d been running my mouth, talking about how much ass I would kick if I went on the show. There’s no skill to the game whatsoever. It’s totally about guessing. Anybody can do it, so why not me?
Then I saw a sign the other night. An omen, if you will. While jogging, I saw the Deal or No Deal tour bus parked outside the Marriott two blocks away from my apartment in downtown.
This was my destiny.
For luck, I stuck my Skeletor action figure (I am a nerd) in my coat pocket and headed to Nebraska Furniture Mart. I was two hours early. The line stretched around the front of the store. I was number 1,921.
The trailer parks had emptied. It was as if a tornado had scooped up every doublewide livin’, Montel watchin’, rag-on-a-stick washin’ dweller in their lawn chairs and plopped them down unharmed in line in front of me. It’s shallow, I know, but this was people watching gold. Take the obese woman in pink sweats and matching pink T-shirt that inexplicably read, “All of my black shirts are dirty.” I bet they are.
Others were straight out of an X-Files episode that still gives me nightmares.
In line behind me, a pregnant girl sucked down cigarettes. I believe she said she was 18 or 19. The bun in her oven was her second. She had her first when she was 16.
A cowboy trucker shared tales of chasing skirts in Germany while serving in the military. He joked (I think) that he’s been through a few marriages; he joked (I think) that one of his wives was blind, got her sight back and left him when she found out how ugly he was.
A pastor told me he saw Jesus on me. I didn’t scream, “Where? Get him off! Get him off!” But I should have. The pastor looked hurt when I told him I didn’t have a church and hadn’t been to one in a while. When I told him that I wrote for the Pitch, he seemed dismayed.
A midget gave up his dignity and dressed up as a leprechaun. I’m not sure at what point he said, “Dignity be damned, I want a million bucks.”
After six hours in line, I employed the only gimmick I had. It’s was what my momma gave me: my red hair. I am a proud ginger kid. I told the woman that there wasn’t enough of my people on her show. She looked at me clueless.
“What’s a ginger?” she asked.
“A redhead,” I said, tugging on my red locks. You know, the fair-skinned, freckled people with carrot tops who won’t be around in a hundred years.
I knew I was doomed. The casting director told my group that filming won’t resume until August and dismissed us. Everyone agreed. We sucked.
I learned a few valuable lessons: Skelly is not lucky. Standing in line for six hours with thousands of people is a waste of time. And I should have made a safe deal and scalped my spot in line. -- Justin Kendall