This Week's Contestant
|Theme:||Wheel Was Here|
"The Wheelmobile's coming to Missoula!" my wife cried out when she read the crawl during one of the shows. I dropped what I was doing in the kitchen and scrambled back to the TV room. After being a Wheel fan since the Chuck Woolery days, would I finally be able to meet Pat and Vanna in person?
I've been a puzzle lover since I was a kid, and Hangman, the model for Wheel of Fortune, had been one of my favorite games. The Wheelmobile tryouts came on a hot sunny summer day at the fairgrounds. When I heard my name announced I broke the four-minute mile running to the stage for an interview and a speed round puzzle. How thrilling to be up there! As I left the stage an assistant handed me a blinky pin and Wheel of Fortune cap, which I donned immediately. Our host said that if we were successful we'd receive an email invitation to a second audition sometime in the fall.
That happy email arrived in late September, and I auditioned on October 6. I went to have fun, and I spoke clearly and enthusiastically when called upon and had a great time solving oral and written puzzles. I clapped happily and cheered when other potential contestants solved their puzzles. At the end of the audition we were told that if we were going to be actual Wheel contestants we'd receive letters in the mail within two to three weeks.
My letter came just six days later, and I yelled out a "whoopee" I'm sure could be heard throughout our neighborhood. Then, after only another week, I got a call from a contestant coordinator asking if I could come to L.A. for a taping on November 4. Things were happening faster than I could ever imagine. "Yes, I'll be there," I said. So, what was it like being on the show? Watch me play this Friday, and see my next blog coming up on December 11th.