"In Control" - Vol. IX, No. 2
"...so the bartender says, ‘Hey, do you know that you have a steering wheel sticking out of your pants'? And the pirate says, ‘Arrrggh I do matey, and it's drivin' me nuts'!...What the...hey, they're here! Start the friggin' column..."
Uhhh, hi. Sorry about that. We didn't realize that thing was on. So where did we leave off last week? Oh yeah, it's been a week since all the message boards say that the next TAR has already been cast. You're moping about, figuring that those stupid casting folks blew it again by not picking you, when your telephone rings. You check the caller ID and see that it's from a ‘Wayne R. Pelston, Inc.'. You don't know Wayne, but you decide to answer anyhow.
"Is this [insert your partner's name here]?"
You just missed your first clue. Right about now you should be jumping for joy, but what do you do? You say, "No, I think you have the wrong number", and are all set to hang up even though that little voice in your head is wondering why someone is asking for your best friend/significant other/escaped convict/warden's wife. Fortunately for you, the voice at the other end speaks again before you can disconnect.
"Oh yeah...[sound of papers shuffling]...this is [insert your name]. I guess I got the numbers backwards."
Suddenly that little voice is screaming, and even you make the connection. This is THE call. Something you should realize is that all the casting agents are folks who aren't bright enough to be actors/actresses, so they are working in casting just to claim that they are "in the business". Consequently, they have trouble matching wits with a box of macaroons, but you really do have to be nice to them - they hold your chance to be on the show in their hands. The call continues, the agent introduces him/herself and they let you know that you've been picked for a semi-finalist interview.
You thought you were nervous when you were just waiting for the call? Now is when your nerves will really kick in. You'll have a few weeks to wait for your interview, and you have no idea what to expect. Until now, that is. Steve and Dave are about to flaunt every confidentiality agreement we ever signed and reveal exactly what goes on in the semi-finalist interviews (this column), and the finalist interviews (future column).
So there you have it. Now that you've guaranteed yourselves a trip to Los Angeles for the finalist interviews, you will want to read our next column - which deals with finalist interviews and our sure-fire methods for getting a spot on the show.
By the way, turns out that TAR9 has actually already started, and they've even aired a couple of legs already. The remaining Racers are bouncing around Brazil, but will be headed to Russia in the next episode (according to the previews). So if you were planning on keeping up-to-date with the Race by reading this column, we apologize. Face it though - no one really remembers any of the teams that finish in the bottom half Anyhow, so you aren't missing much. Well, unless one of those teams tries desperately to extend their 15 minutes by writing a column for a nationally known and respected website or something.