This week, I taped an episode of a very popular talk show. They have extremely strict guidelines about what I can and cannot say about the show, so I am being very careful with this blog post. The show won’t air for a few months and I am not supposed to talk about it until then. However, because I have a big mouth, I have taken great pains to edit out everything that will get me in trouble. This is what my day of taping for a nationally syndicated talk show was like. Can you guess which show I did? Don’t worry, I will make sure you all know the official air date.
5:45 am My alarm goes off and I immediately hit snooze.
5:50 am My alarm goes off again and I think, “Why the hell did I agree to do a talk show?”
6:52 am I curl my eyelashes because I’m gonna be on TV, dammit. (Thanks for the new eyelash curler, Marlene.)
7:15 am The car from the show picks me up at my apartment in Queens. I feel fancy.
7:50 am I arrive at the studio on 66th St. and West End Avenue where I am greeted by a production assistant who takes me to my dressing room which is very impressive. There are bottles of water, a very large fruit plate and some type of mini muffins. I take selfies. I feel fancy.
7:52 am Another production assistant arrives to tell me I am in the wrong dressing room and takes me across the hall to the correct space. There is no fruit plate or mini muffins. Just water and a gift bag. I feel deflated.
8:05 am One of the producers shows up to say hello and go over everything I am to talk about. This is when I realize that they for sure are not going to let me use the word “bitchy” or mention my book. I mean, they had mentioned that earlier, but I was really hoping things would change.
8:20 am A wardrobe person shows up to approve what I am wearing. Turns out, it’s an acquaintance of my husband. Small world. She likes what I am wearing because duh, I look fabulous.
8:30 am I meet another producer who then takes me to set to show me where I will be sitting. I sit on a stool and wait for my turn to go over my bit with the great and powerful talk show host.
8:37 am I meet him. We shake hands. We rehearse. He is gone.
8:45 am I am in hair and make up. The hair lady looks at my hair and I say, “This is all it will do. Trust me.” She agrees and sprays some oil on it to make it look shiny. The makeup woman piles an enormous amount of concealer under my eyes and I feel her judging me for having too many cocktails the night before and not going to bed early. She does not even notice my curled eyelashes.
9:10 am I meet with the first producer again to go over my talking points. It is again confirmed that my blog will be called “B-word Waiter” and we will not be mentioning my book. I flash back to 5:45 this morning and wish I would have turned the alarm off instead of hitting snooze, because this appearance is going to do very, very little for me, my blog or my book. I take an extra bottle water and stuff it into my bag. I deserve it.
9:40 am I see a sign taped on the mirror telling me how I can and cannot tell people about my appearance on the show. Only 7 days before and 7 days after, that’s it. I cannot embed video. I cannot link to YouTube or any other video. I have to use exact words if I Tweet or Facebook about it. I can only liink to the show’s website and it can only be from my own website. I cannot use the host’s name or likeness. It’s almost like they don’t want me to talk about it.
9:45 am I am taken upstairs along with the other two people in my segment; two chefs, one of which I learn is going to talk about something I did not feel comfortable talking about because I didn’t think it was something that really happened very often or at all in restaurants. But I guess he was cool with saying it, so more power to him.
9:47 am We are sitting on chairs outside the studio, both of them taking selfies and me wishing I had brought my phone upstairs.
9:50 am I am taken to my stool and the show begins. I wait for Mr. Talk Show Host to come to the other stool and have a conversation with me. I look at the audience who all seem very excited to be there and some of them look at me with disappointment in their face that I am not someone famous. I am not nervous. I am sleepy and want a nap.
9:58 am He is coming toward me. We are taping. It’s happening. My mind is going over all the things I am supposed to say and I decide that I am going to mention my book myself, because fuck it. He is here. We are talking. I am trying to be funny and animated but serious at the same time. When will I mention my book? How will I do this? When can I fit it in? Will they edit it out if I do it?
10:02 am He’s gone. I did not mention my book. It went so fast. I am kicking myself that I didn’t say anything about the book. The stage managers waves me over. I am done.
10:20 am. My car is here. I am taken to it and get in. The driver proceeds to tell me how all of the day before he drove Anderson Cooper around who was doing appearances for his book all over the city and Long Island. I assume Andersn got to mention the name of his book at said appearances. The driver keeps talking about Anderson Cooper and it feels like he is rubbing it in that I did not get to talk about my book.
10:48 am I am home. I peel off my clothes, wash off the makeup from my face, put the coffee mug in the dishwasher, put the two bottled waters in the fridge and take a two hour nap on the couch with my dog.