As you may know by now, I was a contestant on $100000 Pyramid.
If you know that, then you probably know I did not win $150000 and a trip, which is the most you can win. I also didn’t win $100000 or a trip or any combination of any numbers of moneys and trips.
However, I did win.
I won LIFE.
I got to play games during the audition process. I got to play games during the day we taped. I got to play games on television.
I got to meet Michael Strahan, make a weird face at him, yell Marco to his Polo, and also awkwardly pass him in the hallway not realizing it was him and having to go back to shake his hand only after everyone pointed out to me that I’d snubbed Michael Strahan.
I got to meet Katie Couric and Mario Cantone. These two people make me feel better about living in this world. They were so kind and so down-to-Earth and so into wanting to play a fun game and maybe even win.
I got to meet some incredibly fun and fabulous people. By the time we were ready to play for real, I’d gotten to know the casting team and the other contestants pretty well–as well as you can when you’re in a room for a day–and they are also people who make me feel better about living in this world.
It’s a very unique kind of joy that unfolds when you’re meeting people who love the same things you love when that love is something that not everyone gets to experience.
I lost a lot of rounds. I was nervous for months, thinking about how I may have looked sad or disappointed.
Then in the season finale, there I was, smiling the whole time. Losing round after round, I laughed and smiled and laughed and smiled. Because it wasn’t losing. It was living.
I had my family and a friend there to witness every second. They brought snacks. They brought flowers. Friends who weren’t there sent texts, sent messages, and posted pictures of me on tv on their feeds. I heard from people I haven’t heard from in years. The next day at work, one of the office admins could barely contain her excitement because she watches the show and didn’t know I’d be on and she was so giddy about it.
I also made these faces.
The gratitude I feel still makes all my insides all gushy. I feel like I’m soaring every time I think about it, and even when I don’t. I’m walking around on a game show high that won’t quit.
Then in my writing for the sciences class, this happened:
Student: Professor, can I ask a weird question?
Student: Were you on tv?
Other Student: Are you a vegan?
Me: Odd follow-up, but no.
Other students: What show were you on?
Me: Have you heard of $100000 Pyramid?
Most students: No.
Me: Well, [first student who asked] how did you know?
Student: My parents watch, and I saw you on the screen when I walked in.
Me: Oh, did you watch, too?
Student; No, I just saw you and left.
Me: Yep, that sounds about right.
Moral of this story: Stay humble, bruh.
PS: My mom and brother got me Rice-A-Roni as a consolation prize because the 70s were sometimes better.
PPS: Why is this post entitled Marco Polo? You’ll have to watch this little gem to find out.