As a teacher of teens, you’d think I’d have my fill of freakish behavior.
Photo Credit: Flash.pro (Creative Commons)
Like I need to watch more on my own time? Ah, but I do.
Reality TV is, like, a lurker’s Shangri-la. Yes, these shows are scripted and heavily edited. Yes, the contestants are chosen because of their entertainment value. But the mix of personalities makes a fascinating study in human behavior.
Years of essay writing have me listing these in reverse order, with my favorites at the bottom. The first three I surf, watching only snippets. Because too much drama is too much. But the last three? Those I go to school on.
The right dress can make all the difference to a woman. As a “non-girly” girl, I marvel at how this works. And at how much money some gals can blow through–other people’s money! As for their opinionated friends and family, oh my word. Get over yourselves, people. You’re not the one wearing the dress. And is airing your fine opinions worth damaging your relationship with the bride?
The designs that contestants come up with fascinate me. Combine a bolt of cloth, accessories, and attitude. Voila, an outfit. Not necessarily an attractive outfit or something I would wear, but still. The something-from-nothing is a hook, and also the fact that the designers must actually do work. I tune in for the final 15 minutes.
I watch to see the photo stills at the end. How is it that the camera loves certain faces? And how can an image be so vastly more glamorous than the actual girl? And how important is it for an attractive young woman to keep her petty complaints to herself?
Because Pete Nelson is just so likable. The camera work is excellent, the locations are easy on the eyes, and who doesn’t want a tree house? This is another show where the “stars” are workmen, not drama queens, and they love what they do. This one I watch from start to finish.
Ditto for Mike Rowe. He delights in being Everyman, is comfortable in front of the camera, can toss off one-liners with ease, and willingly puts himself in shiver-worthy work situations. Plus the man’s a darn good writer.
This one is my current favorite. I like the banter, the crisp intelligence, and the practical advice. Again, I’m watching working people who have learned by doing, and the questions they ask are excellent. In the process I’ve come to realize that I am more than just in business for myself. I am an entrepreneur–a scary word! –both as the creator of my fiction and its promoter. As a marketer, I kind of stink!
In our social media-driven world, what I need to learn about getting out there–being likable, being real, being myself–is a lot. So this teacher is going to school, Reality School, with Pete Nelson and Mike Rowe and the six Sharks. And I’m reminded about what NOT to do from the others.
Are you a Reality TV lurker like me? Which shows are your favorites? Ah, but are there some you love to hate?