On Friday I received a curious email from the founders of CrazyBlindDate.com. Apparently they had been tricked into going on the Fox morning show and after reading my blog entry about their service wanted nothing more than to drag me down with them. I was totally in. The deal was this – go on a Crazy Blind Date with some random dude and let Fox film it and then show up on Monday’s episode of The Morning Show with Mike and Juliet for an interview. They did not specifically ask me to make a fool out of myself but I’m pretty sure it was implied (never let it be said that I don't deliver on my commitments). Remember long long ago (last week) when I bemoaned just how awful I am at dating? Well everyone knows that if you think you’re not very good at something a sure fire way to overcome your insecurities is to do that activity on national television.
In order to be cleared for TV I had to submit to a very upbeat phone screen with one of the producers of Fox’s Morning Show with Mike and Juliet. During the phone screen that producer worked very hard to get me to agree that my ultimate goal for my crazy bind date was L-O-V-E and most certainly not “I needed something to blog about.” Luckily I’m an atheist and therefore have no moral scruples so I had no problem telling the roughly 500 white lies required to get on national TV. (“random blind dates are a sure fire path to love!” “Oh yeah, my house is totally clean already.” “Of course I know how to do my own make up!”). Despite my flagrant disregard for the truth after the phone screen I felt certain that Fox was running a background check on my voting record and would be banning me from the show. I can only assume that at 5:30pm on Friday the network was desperate enough for a single girl that they were willing to overlook my love for organic vegetables, evolution and the gays.
So I thought everything was set – I meet at the date site early to do an interview and then they film the date and then I get drunk and wonder what the fuck I was thinking. Then, latish on Friday night the producer calls to ask if they can do some pre show filming at my house – as a red blooded television worshiping American I had no choice but to say yes. So I spent all of Saturday morning obsessively cleaning least my family see the show and determine that the main reason why I’m not married is that my entire house is covered in chinchilla dust. (They’d be wrong, the boys love the dust, they think it’s mysterious and sexy).
The crew arrived at 3pm and filmed roughly 15 hours of me poking at my computer and putting on my earrings (strangely they filmed only a few minutes of “Brianna walking” footage but obviously decided to put ALL of it on the show – I walk good.). The camera and PA for the show were both hot. I wondered if there was some easy way to hit on both of them while being filmed on a date with another dude. Since as usual I failed at the flirting I can only hope that they read this and are totally into sharing a girlfriend (I have two hands boys!).
I used to think that if I were to go on reality TV I would be able to resist falling into a one dimensional stereotype but now I know that I was wrong. Put in front of cameras I become the perky sweet girl immediately (like Bridget from The Girls Next Door but with better taste in men and more clothing). Given a few weeks living in a mansion I’d kill off about 40% of the viewing audience with my saccharine sweetness. The hair and make up people did everything possible to help me fit this reality TV archetype with super straight hair and a ton of make-up I pull off boring pretty quite well. If only I had some huge fake boobs perhaps I could jump start a career as a C list celebrity.
As you can see from the date footage I looked adorable. Also I was hilariously witty. Also it’s shocking to believe that I am single. I have been contacted by no less than 780 scientists interested in studying this phenomenon (most studies seem centered around exploring the phenomenon in the nude). Bret was cute too. He was notably much cuter than the picture he used on CrazyBlindDate which I saw the next day -- because I am a huge huge huge lover of the geeks I thought, “oh he’s way hotter than that picture, I kind of wish he looked like that, that guy looks like a totally dork!” I said as much on the show – I also said the following on my official Crazy Blind Date feedback form, “Brett was great but I usually only date guys who know at least one programming language.”
Despite the fact that holding a conversation with some guy you just met while three people hover over you with cameras and mics and notepads is virtually impossible I think we both managed to avoid looking like schmoes. While the date did have some awkward moments the clip that Fox uses to make us look like dorks (frankly I’m surprised they didn’t edit some cricket chirping into the soundtrack) was likely the result of both of us trying very hard to think of TV friendly things to talk about on a “date.” At one point we got onto the topic of my job and I had to continue speaking over the “Brianna do not get your ass fired” alarms going off in my head. Sadly the Mike and Juliet site only shows the first half of our segment but that might be for the best since all I remember of the interview portion is offering to make out on the show. But the interview does reveal that Brett and I extended our 20 minute agreed upon date for a few hours when he asked to tag along with me to the Roller Derby (where the girls were hot enough to almost turn me into a dyke). This allowed us to actually talk to each other like normal people rather than “The Perky Girl” and “The Responsible Gentleman” – it turned out I had more in common with Brett than I thought, he likes cooking and eating and travel and technology – again the robots do me right. There’s a reason why I love computers so much. While on our post-date date Brett and I also came up with the most awesome idea for Monday – A little faked proposal action, thankfully for the Crazy Blind Date dude our idea was all talk and no commitment (clearly we’re not ready for marriage).
So yet again Crazy Blind Date is awesome – everyone reading this should break up with the significant others just to go out on random dates. The only snafu of the evening was that the car that Fox sent to take me to the date was ridiculously expensive and I had to pay for it. At first I blamed Fox for being cheap “no new taxes” bastards but in retrospect I now just think that the cabbie scammed me since the same limo service drove me to Fox and to work today and didn’t charge me either time. Luckily the drinks were comped… though not by Fox – the bar manager paid for them.
The live TV experience this morning was surreal. I arrived make up free and with my frizzy hair in a ponytail (as Amy observed I’m not the kind of person to clean before the maid arrives) and was sent straight to hair and make-up (“Get thee to the chair before your hideousness ruins television for all!”). The hair lady took one look at me and reached for the straightening iron – curly hair is for communists. While being straightened the beauticians inquired about my day job and upon hearing the words “Software Project Manager” launched immediately into a chorus of “why is my computer so slow.” I threw out some “reboot” and “disk defragmenter” recommendations to appease them least they choose to send me onto the show with a beehive and orange lipstick (though that might have been awesome). From there on everything moved at lightening speed; the producers quizzed me and seemed convinced that I would not clam up or bare any body parts that could get Fox sued (tempting, believe me), Bret tried to get me to take some sort of crazy herbal supplement for nerves, the CrazyBlindDate dude seemed completely freak out (though he also resisted the herbal supplement), and then we were standing at the edge of the stage trying not to giggle as they showed our dating footage.
When I got to work and hour later I had to resist the impulse to wash my face figuring that without some serious cleanser I wasn’t going to be able to even break through the make-up top soil. There was a mixed office reaction to my new heavily made up look – half shock (“oh my god you’re a girl!”) and half awe (“you should hire a make-up and hair crew every morning”) – obviously this is disturbing since a) I think I looked like a freak and b) there is no way in hell I’m going to spend this much time, energy and money on my looks on any sort of regular basis. This also presumes that I have the skills to make myself up but instead choose sleep over beauty every morning. The truth is that laziness is the least of my problems. Predate (when I had to do my own make-up) I had a moment of panic when I called two friends (neither of which responded – thanks for nothing Amy and Gillian) in a panic when I remembered 30 minutes before the camera crew arrived that I have no idea how to put on eye shadow or tie a scarf. I mean I can swipe on some Burt’s Bees lip tint and run a brush through the mop but other than that I’m as inept as an accountant on a stripper pole (no offense to all the sexy accountants out there).
So... to quote Fox’s obsessed producers, “WAS IT A LOVE MATCH? HMMMM? HMMM? WAS IT?!?” I don’t know. The whole experience was so much more like being in a play than like being on a date that it’s hard to tell where reality TV Brianna stops and reality life Brianna begins. So – I would certainly go out with Bret without any cameras around to find out if we’re real life compatible – and if we are I intend to get Fox to pay for our wedding. Bret, I know you subscribed to my blog, say hi to the folks in the comments and give me a call.
Even if there isn’t a date #2 (though one could argue that hanging out on tv this morning was technically a date #2) I feel I spent my 15 minutes wisely – I looked cute, I didn't try to convert people to some crazy cult and I kept my underwear on which is much more than most real celebrities seem capable of.Update: Date footage from YouTube where they let you fast forward straight to the hot Brianna action (Thanks Adam!). I'm going to try to pull the full segment complete with interview from my tivo tonight... wish me luck.