Thursday, January 24, 2013

And this is why I would make a terrible famous person.

Last week, I was contacted by a woman via email who requested to interview me on the radio about being an awards show seat filler.  I wrote about my experience as a seat filler about a year ago here, and I'm assuming that's how she found me--unless there's some former seat filler database of which I'm unaware.

My first reaction was to politely decline.  After all, I only worked as a seat filler once, 13 years ago, at an obscure awards show that barely anyone knows exists.  However, after receiving an overwhelmingly enthusiastic response from family and friends who thought I should do it, I emailed the woman back and accepted after stating my reservations.  She replied immediately and we made plans to do the interview today at 1PM.

I've tried to put it out of my mind for the last week so that I don't get nervous and call it off, because I tend to do that with important things.  I'm an over-thinker/worrier, and also I'm out of Xanax.  I've been putting off going to the doctor to get more because I'm worried that they'll think I'm a crazy person.  Yes, I am aware of the paradox.

To give you an idea of what I go through in my mind (and why I'd make a terrible famous person) (and why I should probably cut back on the coffee), what follows is an account of my thought process today:

9:00 AM  Today is my radio interview!  Exciting!

9:30 AM  I think I'll make some coffee....oh, no.  I feel dizzy.  I think I'm nervous.  Maybe coffee is a bad idea. 

9:40 AM  Eh, what the hell?  Maybe just one cup.  COFFEE!!! 
And by "cup", I mean "20 oz. mug".

9:50 AM  Just spoke to a friend on the phone and tried to explain what a seat filler is and why I am going on the radio today.  Noticed that I said "um" a lot.  Must practice explaining the role of seat filler before I'm asked on national radio this afternoon.  I'm a bumbling idiot.

9:55 AM  Just Googled "how to become a seat filler" and decided that, if they ask, I'll just tell them to do the same thing.  What, they don't have Google?

10:15 AM  I may as well finish off this whole French is expensive. 

10:30 AM  Re-read the blog post that brought this situation about, to freshen up my mind on the details of that evening.  This is a pretty good story. 

10:48 AM  I should not have had the rest of that coffee.  Am I talking fast?  I think I'm talking too fast.  Must remember to talk slowly.  And make sense.  I'm sweaty.  Surely two hours is enough time to burn off the caffeine, right?

10:57 AM  Drinking water like a mad woman.  FLUSH OUT THE CAFFEINE!  FLUSH IT RIGHT OUT!!!

water water water water water water water
11:00 AM  Pee break.

11:05 AM  Read some local news about a woman who was strangled and had her body burned.  What a sick world we're living in.  Why would anyone want to interview me about seat filling when there are crazy things like this going on?  Horrible.

11:30 AM  Pee break.  Note to self: buy toilet paper.

11:45 AM  Oh no.  I hope I don't have to pee in the middle of the interview.  That would be bad.  It's only ten minutes long, so surely I could hold it.  Surely.  Must remember to go before I sit down at the desk.

11:46 AM  I forgot to make The Kid his lunch.  And he still has to do his homework.  I am a terrible mother.

11:47 AM  Make lunch and give The Kid his homework to do.  He doesn't want to do it.  I tell him that he has to, otherwise he'll disappoint his teacher.  He does it.

11:50 AM  Put on some makeup and do my hair.  Yes, this is a radio interview, but it's being done over Skype and I think the hosts will see me.  Must look presentable.


12:15 PM  Pee break.  Today was a bad day to wear long johns and skinny jeans.

12:16 PM  *click here for sad horn sound*  Just got a phone call from the radio producer.  She did not read my blog post at all, and just assumed that I had worked the Oscars since she found it by Googling "seat filler at the oscars".  I will not be doing the interview after all.

Oh well.  That's life, as they say.

Am I disappointed?  A little, yeah.  Even though I was anxious and I'm a little relieved, I would be lying if I said that I wasn't kind of excited to hear the end result.  Also, this blog post is totally screwed up now.

The moral of the story:  say yes to things that scare you.*  They may give you anxiety, they may not pan out quite the way you'd imagined, but at least you won't miss any opportunities.  What else was I going to do with my morning, anyway?

Also a good lesson:  if you work in radio or television, you may want to do your research a little more thoroughly before the day of the interview.  I mean, 45 minutes out and she FINALLY reads the blog post that brought her to me?  All the information she needed was right there!  People are so lazy.

*If anybody would like to interview me on the radio (or on television) in the future, I would request that you 1) choose something that I can talk about with confidence and 2) don't give me too much advance notice.  Also, if you would offer to pay me or give me a free trip to somewhere, I'd take that too, but only if you want to because I don't want to sound greedy. 
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