2002.09.18 Look out, Hollywood (or downtown Morenci)

Written by David Green.

BY Rich Foley

I suppose I’m not the only one who gets tired of the same old spam showing up on my email. After all, how many credit cards can one person get? How many international drivers licenses does one person need? How many different naked pictures of Britney Spears could possibly exist?

That’s why I was curious when I recently got a message with the subject line of “Casting Call for Reality TV’s Fastest New Show!” At least curious enough to open the email, which I seldom do with spam.

It turns out some big Hollywood studio I never heard of is casting “the Hot new Reality TV show RALLY RACER with a diverse cast of characters. We are looking for you to possibly fill the role of a RACECAR DRIVER!”

OK, I wouldn’t really be a race car driver, I’d just play one on TV. But, I’d be playing one in “…thirteen action-packed episodes featuring sixteen everyday people as they are catapulted into the adrenaline-filled world of professional RallyGP racing where camaraderie, conflict and competition create the most dramatic experience of today’s reality television viewing.”

Wait a minute, I have to be catapulted?

I’m also told that while on location, I will experience “six weeks of pure adrenaline and excitement.” There’s the word “adrenaline” again. I’m starting to get excited just thinking about it.

Then there’s the three-week contestant “Boot Camp,” three weeks in which “every minute of your day is structured and designed to turn you into a well-oiled driving and racing machine.” Well-oiled? With what?

Of course, the best part is that I will “experience the life of a professional race car driver even down to the catered meals, massages, personal trainers and superstar treatment.” Yeah, I think I might be able to get used to that.

There are a few details here that concern me, however. For example, they’re not very clear on when the show will actually air, or on what network, if any.

They don’t want to tell where the series will be shot either, only that the location will be “hot and dusty.” That makes me think that downtown Morenci is a possibility for the location.

Then, there’s the task of filling out the online “casting application.” They want to know, among other information, my hair length, skin tone and favorite musician, book, food and drink.

I’m also supposed to describe my lifestyle, capability of running and jogging, hand/eye coordination and smoking and drinking habits.

A warning states that “anyone found to have misinformed the casting officials will be removed from the show.” Of course, if they are really looking for a “diverse cast of characters,” then telling the truth might give a person a better chance of being selected than everyone submitting answers they think the casting people are looking for.

Then there’s the matter of the casting application fee. That’s where this starts to look like all the other spam I receive. To “process” my e-casting application, I must pay a fee of $11.95, payable by credit card, or an online check for $14.95. The fee can only be paid online and is nonrefundable.

It’s explained that the fee “helps with the cost of creating, managing and processing the vast number of applicants.” Of course, the more applicants, the more fees they collect, but they word it so it sounds like a bad thing.

Only a cynic would think the show is just an excuse to collect a few million application fees from wannabe television stars. OK, so call me a cynic.

I decided for sure to forego this opportunity when I stumbled across a paragraph that, despite their secrecy, identified the show as taking place in the Sahara.

After all, if I were going to drive overseas, I’d need one of those international drivers licenses and that’s just one spam scam too many.

    – Sept. 18, 2002 
  • Cecil
    THE MAYOR—Cecil Schoonover poses with a collection of garden gnomes that mysteriously arrive and disappear from his property. Along with the gnomes, someone created the sign stating that he is the Mayor of Gnomesville. He hasn’t yet tracked down the people involved in the prank, but he’s having a good time with the mystery.
  • Front.rest
    TAKE A BREAK—Last Wednesday’s session of Stair District Library’s Summer Reading Program ended with a quiet period in a class presented by yoga instructor Melany Gladieux of Toledo. Children learned a variety of yoga poses in the main room at the library, then finished off the session relaxing. Additional photos are on page 7. Area children are invited to visit the library today when the Michigan Science Center presents a flight program at 11 a.m. and roller coasters at 1 p.m.
  • Front.batter
    THE DERBY—Tyler “Smallpox” Flakne of Minnesota’s Home Run League All-Stars goes for the fence Friday night during the National Wiffle League Association’s home run derby in Morenci. This year the wiffleball national tournament moved from Dublin, Ohio, to Morenci’s Wakefield Park. During the derby, competitors had two minutes to hit as many home runs as possible. The winner this year finished with 21. See page 6 and 7 for additional photos.
  • Front.green Screen
    OUT OF THIS WORLD—Elizabeth McFadden and Elise Christle pose in front of the green screen as VolunTeen Noah Gilson makes them appear as though they are standing on the Moon. More photos from the Stair District Library’s NASA @ My Library program are on page 12.
  • Front.snake
    Lannis Smith of the Leslie Science and Nature Center in Ann Arbor shows off a python last week at Stair District Library's Summer Reading Program.
  • Front.fireworks
    FIREWORKS erupt Saturday night over Morenci’s Wakefield Park during the waning hours of the Town and Country Festival. Additional festival photos are inside.
  • Pipeline Spread
    LINED UP—Lengths of pipe were put in place last week along the route of the Rover natural gas pipeline that will stretch from Defiance, Ohio, to Ontario, Canada. Topsoil was removed before the pipes were laid out. The 42-inch diameter pipeline is scheduled for completion in November.
  • Front.rock Study
    ROCKHOUNDS—From the left, Joseph McCullough, Sean Pagett and Jonathan McCullough peer through hand lenses to study rocks. The project is part of Morenci Elementary School’s summer camp that continues into August.

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