May 20, 2004
A tale of a fateful trip

So, if you're an academic, you can try winning your fame and fortune by writing great books, doing great research, and coming up with grand new ideas. Or you can go another route:

Yesterday afternoon, I got a phone call in my office from a very cheerful man named Craig, representing an outfit called "Next Entertainment". Craig is in charge of casting the latest reality show -- a new version of Gilligan's Island. Yes, there is a website for prospective competitors. The idea is to find authentic versions of the characters from the original 1960s TV show; they want a "real-life skipper, first mate, millionaire couple, movie star, professor and Kansas farm girl" for what will be a "Survivor-style" show set on a small island in the Pacific. Well, Craig has apparently been put in charge of hunting down "real" Los Angeles-area college professors, and he found me through Rate my Professors and this blog. He urged me to come in to his company's Sherman Oaks offices for a video interview.

The real agenda, most likely, turned up here:
The superficiality factor was high: Craig asked if the pictures he found on my blog were accurate, how tall I was, and so forth. More sleazily, he asked if I was married, and was pleased when I said no. When I said I had a girlfriend, he said "Well, that's okay." One wonders.

Indeed. Looking at the blog, Craig must have known Hugo is a Mennonite and a feminist. I can't help thinking they're enjoying the thought of throwing temptations his way, sort of putting him in the role of the naive young clergyman in British farce, if you know what I mean. Hey, let's ruffle his Christian principles and his political correctness!

I can see why they chose him though. He certainly looks the part. And his student comments included things like this:

damn, not only is he SO ATTRACTIVE, but he's very knowledgable, passionate, an EXCELLENT lecturer, entertaining, great storyteller, fair, just all around excellent professor. i DEFINITELY recommend his class. if i were 15 yrs older...rowl.

All in all, he was probably wise to say no.

Posted by Camassia at May 20, 2004 08:26 PM | TrackBack
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