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October 08, 2004 - 11:37 am

BOWLING FOR DOLLAR

I was in a commercial yesterday. Or rather, I was an extra in the filming of a commercial yesterday that will air on all the ESPN channels from November to February. I find this funny for a number of reasons.

1. I’m not an actress, and, in fact, I loathe overly dramatic people. I was about to say something to the effect of “at this point in my life there is enough real drama with small children, mortgage, cars, business, health insurance, etc. that the idea of inventing drama such as, ‘You should have seen what she was wearing last night! I heard that he sleeps around and she knows about it but doesn’t say anything. And the two of them went to this adult club…’ is inconceivable to me.” But then I remembered that I have never had time for such drama. I had this friend once when I was a kid who constantly tried to provoke an argument by asking, “Are you mad at me?” to which I always responded, “No. Why on earth would I be mad at you?” Until one day, I finally had to say, “If you ask me that one more time, I’m never speaking to you again.” I can’t hide my feelings very well, and I can’t lie well either, so acting is just not “my craft,” as those of us in the business call it. Oh, just forget it! If you're not in the business, you wouldn't understand what we go through! YOU'VE RUINED MY LIFE! I HATE YOU AND I'LL NEVER FORGIVE YOU, YOU LIFE-RUINER!

2. I don’t watch much commercial television. Unless the producer tells me exactly when it's on, I will probably never see the commercial, as I’m sure it won’t be airing on PBS or The Science Channel (formerly the Discovery Channel). John came home from work earlier this week and found me flipping between a documentary on gamma ray bursts, the vice-presidential debate, and Sex and the City. Yep, I’m strange.

3. I don’t watch sports. Going to a Braves game to me means it’s really hot and the beer is warm and too expensive. Football is an enigma, and I get too hung up trying to figure out all the rules to enjoy the finer aspect of the game which, of course, is watching huge men knock the shit out of each other. Fun! Tennis is dull except for those awesome grunting noises the players make when they serve. Arhuuunkhhh!! Golf is just an excuse to look at the pretty grass and azaleas. I snuck into the Masters Tournament in Augusta with my friend Mark years ago, and we did more people watching than anything else. Basketball is okay, but it’s just not high enough on that New Ways to Commit My Time and Energy list to work in right now.

4. It’s a commercial for professional bowling, which is funny in and of itself. Bowling is a nerdy sport, and there is just no way around that. I’m sorry, but it had to be said. One of the other extras (a guy, naturally) pointed out that these bowlers were a virtually untapped market for the single girls among us. I mean, each of them carries a ‘purse’ of close to a million dollars a year (doubt it!), not to mention all the money they receive from sponsors. You’d get to tour all the best bowling alleys in the country and get all the free PBR you want. “Plus,” he said, “look at those guys. They’d be grateful as hell to have women like you paying attention to them. Think about it.” Thinking…thinking…no thanks.

5. There was no beer present at the shooting, which is how I was lured Outside the Perimeter in the first place. Hello? Who can bowl (or even act like a bowling fan) without beer? It’s simply not done. AND we were supposed to be compensated, but I doubt I'll ever see a penny of that dollar.

Anyway, look for me soon on ESPN in a commercial for the Professional Bowlers Association with Robert Smith, Lonnie Waliczek, Pete Weber, Brad Angelo, and Tommy Jones – the All-Stars, if you will. If I’m visible at all, I’m sitting on the front row of the crowd of fans just behind the left shoulder of each bowler respectively (toward the right side of the television screen) and wearing a light blue t-shirt with navy blue short sleeves. And Julie is directly behind them, so look for her too.

~Samantha

recommended:
reading -Summerland by Michael Chabon
viewing - The Big Lebowski
listening -

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