I finally made it on the Amazing Race!
Races are not typically for me, I’m not really all that competitive. I once ended up coaching an 8-10years olds baseball league when I was twenty-one. I thought it would be more fun to let every kid try any position they wanted then put them in the places they were best and let the crappier kids play less. Needless to say we were having fun, however I don’t think we won a game and I caught all kinds of verbal flack from parents. Parents who would not actually volunteer to coach their own kids I might ad…
Anyways if there ever was a competitive event for me, it would be the Amazing Race. Actually I think I have applied to be on that show four times now. I tried with my Latino friend Liz, you know how they are trying to fill “roles”. The gay couple that’s really dramatic, the blonde twins with fake boobs, the dumb models who get lost in the airport, the couple who both survived rectal cancer etc. Well are Latino & gringo hook ever never got us in.
Another time I tired with a girlfriend & we shot what was a hella good video where we stuff my micro van that’s eventually pulled away by micro donkeys, full of every possible thing you would need on the Amazing Race, even a snow blower. I laughed a lot making that video, however that didn’t get us on.
Another time we shot a more “down to earth” kind of video of us just messing about in her kitchen. For this one a friend of my even emailed to say he knew the producer of the Amazing Race Canada and I was sure I’d have an IN. Well she emailed me back to say she couldn’t just elect me on the show. Boo!
Here is the link to two of those videos if you want five minutes of fun.
Micro Doney One HERE. Casual Kitchen One HERE
Well wouldn’t ya know, it’d be Cartagena Colombia where I’d finally end up on The Amazing Race. I’d been in the city for about two days now and this day things seemed a bit different around town. There were some small swimming pools set up near the walled city. I saw a bunch of random people with cameras sort of standing suspiciously about. Groups of people just sort of seemed to be hanging around in random places for no apparent reason.
Later that day I’m walking down the side of a street and this couple starts yelling at me in English, actually they had yelled at a few people who just walked away. This would be one of a handful of times speaking English paid off more than Spanish. They asked me in English if I would help them and of course being the stand up guy that I am I said yes.
They said I just needed to use the phone of this lady who was set up on the street to call anyone in Colombia and have a one minute conversation. Sure I thought no problem, “Wait, who am I going to call? ohh and why do you want me to do this?”
Then I notice the guy with a huge camera over his shoulder filming us, the Amazing Race trademark red and white clue in their and hand, and I said “What, you are on the Amazing Race?” and then went on this little rant about how many times I had applied to be on The Amazing Race. They didn’t really care, they were in a hurry and needed me to get dialing.
I thought I’d just ring my hotel, unfortunately I didn’t seem to have a copy of anything from the hotel. So I tried to look it up on my phone, well I didn’t have a Colombia phone package yet and had no internet. So now we had a problem, I scanned my phone for Colombia contacts. However I hadn’t made any Colombian friends yet. So the clock was ticking and they were getting anxious for me to help them complete this challenge.
After what seemed like forever, yet was probably only four or five minutes, eventually we asked a guy on the street if we could have the number of one of his friends and just call them to talk. So he gives us his girlfriends number and I ring her up. Well my Spanish is extremely basic and I ask her the most random of questions in Spanish.
“Do you have a boyfriend?”
“Is your boyfriends name Juan?”
“Does he have a motorcycle?”
“I know Juan he is very handsome.”
“Do you live in Cartagena?”
I had no idea what the hell she was asking me back and it’s painstakingly difficult to ask a full minute of questions, I’d need about twenty-five more to fill the minute! The judges finally had mercy on me and let me go onto the next clue.
I told Juan to explain to his bewildered girlfriend it was for a television show and pointed to the cameras. Then to let her know he was fine as I’m sure some random foreigner calling up your girlfriend and confirming all kinds of personal information seems like it might be leading to extortion!
The couple explain they are from Israel and the judge will play me two recorded messages in Hebrew that I must repeat out loud and the will try to figure out what I am saying before they get the next clue. Now seriously WTF? It’s one thing to moderately ramble out a few butchered Spanish phrases after having eight months or so to practice them. Hebrew though, really, do I look like a Rabbi?
Anyway, they played me the two messages ten times each while I repeated it back to the chiseled faces of two people who were selected for a television show I’m assuming based more on their beauty profiles than say being the rectal cancer survivors. Actually it was sort of like talking to a mirror
After some twenty translations I’m not sure I put them anymore in the lead than they already were. Time was up and I snapped a quick photo with my low resolution camera phone I picked up in El Salvador after my Costco one died on month five of it’s life.
I gripped some more about never being picked for the Canadian show and we quickly parted ways.
If you happen to be in Israel watching this season of Amazing Race and they are in Colombia, look for the handsome biker who hasn’t shaved in a few days blundering his way through a couple different languages.
Most importantly if you know anyone who can get me on the show, email me. I available, anytime, really anytime…