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Apr 15 / Amy

The Price is Wrong, b!#*% – (Part 1 of 2)

For a majority of my life, I always dreamed of hearing my name called along side, “Amy….come on down!! You’re the next contestant on The Price is Right!” Every summer as a child, or every sick day home from school, you could place money on the fact that when 11:00 am rolled around, I was in front of the TV watching Bob Barker and his Beauties feature random home products. I wanted to be there, in the crowd – they looked so happy! I wanted to be on stage under the lights – listening to the crowd yell “Higher!!”, “Lower!!” or random prices from their seats. I wanted to kiss Bob Barker on the cheek – well, cause that’s what every woman did! I wanted to play the most prized game on the entire show – Plinko! Yes sir, it was my dream to be on The Price is Right.

Years passed and I grew up still loving TPIR. In high school, Happy Gilmore came out, which made Bob Barker very funny and kind of cool as he punched out Adam Sandler’s character in a golf course brawl. I graduated from college and started working, so my daytime game show habit dwindled. Bob Barker was getting older and it was clear that he would be retiring soon. It wasn’t until December of 2006 that the spark rekindled. I won employee of the year, and with that came an all-expenses paid trip to anywhere in the continental United States for me and anyone of my choosing. Woo hoo!

I instantly thought of my mom and The Price is Right – I was going to use this trip to go to Los Angeles and see Bob Barker before he retired! That following March, my mom and I flew out to Los Angeles to cross this item off my life list.

Welcome to Los Angeles

Arriving at LAX - Happy to be in Los Angeles!

We had written for tickets and received them for the Tuesday taping. Gates opened at 6 am, and the first folks in line up to a certain number were admitted. I was *so* incredibly excited! We pulled up via taxi around 5:30 am and the line was insanely long – there was no way we were going to make it in, but we got in line to try anyway. The line started moving and we were approximately 50-60 people away from the entrance when they notified everyone that they were out of passes for the taping. I was crushed – this was the sole reason I opted to come out to Los Angeles! I spoke to the CBS affiliate and she said sometimes they have extra seats available for those without tickets – she couldn’t guarantee that we’d be able to make it in the next morning without one, but it was worth a shot.

I informed my mother that we would be returning that evening/even earlier the next morning to attempt getting into the audience. She thought I was crazy until she saw the tears forming. Since she didn’t want to come with me, I was going to take a taxi and get in line early, I didn’t care what she said. The thought of her only daughter sitting out on the streets overnight didn’t set well with her – so she agreed to drive by the location that night before making a decision. It was 8 pm and people were already in line. I was determined to be there before midnight, so we went to Target, bought blankets, a few snacks, and went back to Fairfax Avenue to get into the line around 10:30 pm. There were already 40 people in line! (There are no pictures from this time period – as I was not wearing any make-up!)

Taken during our first attempt to make it to The Price is Right

When you sit in line for long periods of time, you tend to make friends with the people around you. We met two nice ladies from Michigan who were there on vacation. We learned that the bagel shop across the street rented plastic chairs for $3 each – so I went across the street and picked up two for us to sit in. It was going to be a long night and the sidewalk was not comfortable. It was approximately 40 degrees outside with 15 mph wind. I was freezing trying to sleep bundled up in my chair – it wasn’t happening. Thankfully, my mom had parked the car across the street from where we camped out, so we alternated getting inside and turning it on to enjoy the heated seats and warm air blowing from the vents. Clearly I would not make it out on the streets for very long if I were forced into that situation. At this point, we still didn’t have tickets to get in the next day – and my mom is cursing me under her breath stating that we BETTER get to see a taping in the morning and about how we were wasting perfectly good beds in our hotel room.

Around 3:30 am, the bagel shop across the street opened up. Thank goodness! They sold hot chocolate, coffee, breakfast foods, juices, and most importantly, they were the only place open with a restroom! You couldn’t just use the restroom though, you had to have a receipt proving you’d purchased something from the shop. That wasn’t a problem though, because we were hungry and I wanted something warm as I was still freezing! While standing in line to use the ladies room, I struck up a conversation with a lady who happened to be about 8 people in front of us in the line outside for the show. She told me she was in town for a national college auditors convention (random?) and then asked me about what brought me out to California. I told her how I’d won employee of the year and my life list goal of being a contestant on (or being at a live taping of) The Price is Right – and that we didn’t have tickets (explained what happened earlier in the day) and stated that we were hoping we’d be able to get in anyway. We parted ways and I went back to my spot in line.

Around 5:50 am, minutes from the gate opening, some guy from the college auditors group walks up to me and says, “I heard you needed two tickets. We have a few people that aren’t coming anymore, so you can have theirs. Congrats on being employee of the year.” I jumped up and down and thanked the guy over and over again! Our night on the street wasn’t in vain! And while we’d been awake all night, the day was just beginning as we got closer to the gate, and closer to fulfilling one of my life long goals.

To be continued…[Read Part 2]

[#7 of #52]

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6 Comments

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  1. Rebecca / Apr 15 2011

    Damn, that is crazy dedication!!!

    But as someone who has waited on the streets of LA for talk shows back in high school and college, it does make me super happy when someone ahead of you in line does something awesome like that!!!

    Can’t wait to read more!

    • Amy / Apr 16 2011

      I never thought I’d sleep in a plastic chair on the sidewalk, but I was bound and determined to make it happen! I’m glad I’m not the only person to wait on the streets to see a show! Our back-up option (based on what was available) was a taping of the Tyra Banks Show, which they were practically giving tickets away to sit in! Very glad it didn’t come to that!

  2. Heather / Apr 16 2011

    Love it! I watched the show all the time when I was little and thought it would be a blast to go. Really looking forward to the next installment :-)

    • Amy / Apr 16 2011

      I’m glad to know I’m not the only fan out there! While I felt like I was a huge fan, I learned to what extent other fans would go to for Bob Barker and The Price is Right while sleeping on the street!

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