Wednesday, December 2, 2009

The Continuing Triumph of "Reality Television Shows" Over Actual "Reality"

Almost every single story in the news has some kind of "reality show" angle right now. Remember the "White House Gatecrashers"? I wrote about them yesterday in a rather memorable post, so you should. It turns out, they weren't just reality teevee "wannabees," they'd actually already been filmed for a full season of "The Real Housewives of DC," and the "gatecrashing" is intended to be the season finale, if you can believe Gawker (and why wouldn't you?):

Not only are they done filming, but the Salahi party crash is going to be the first season finale. In fact, it appears that crews have been filming Michaele and Tareq Salahi since the middle of September. Naughty Bravo!

Yeah, right. Naughty. More like "brilliant." The "Real Housewives" franchise is already Bravo's biggest, and this has only increased interest in the next installment. They've got everyone talking about the Salahis on just about every channel. Even I'm writing about it, and I only write about very important things.

Important things such as the Tiger Woods... um, incident? situation? This story is a bit confusing and I was traveling when it happened, so I am still a little behind the curve on it. Apparently, Tiger Woods is a very famous golfing professional. Perhaps the most famous, although I don't follow golf (unless it's played on the Nintendo Wii-- I spent much of Thanksgiving weekend playing Wii Sports, and I have to say my right arm hasn't been this sore since high school) so I really wouldn't know. But he's very famous. He's also one of the richest human beings in the world. He is bed-shittin' rich. And he's married to a beautiful former model from Sweden. So the man is living the life, right?

Except, Tiger Woods wanted more.

More women. More action. More action with more women. The whole house of cards Mr. Woods has (allegedly) built for himself all started to come crumbling down with a fairly banal automobile accident right outside his lavish Florida home:

Woods was pulling out of his driveway and onto the 6300 block of Deacon Circle when his SUV smashed into a fire hydrant at the edge of his next-door neighbor's property and scuffed a tree, [Florida Highway Patrol Sgt. Kim] Montes said.
Woods' Escalade received $5,000 to $8,000 worth of damage to the front bumper and grille, according to FHP. Its air bags did not deploy, which suggests the vehicle was traveling less than 33 mph.
By the time a Windermere police officer arrived about 2:25 a.m., Elin Nordegren Woods had dragged her husband out of his 2009 Cadillac Escalade. He was lying on the ground, dazed and bleeding from his lips and with blood in his mouth, Windermere Mayor Gary Bruhn said.

The crash knocked Tiger Woods, 33, unconscious for about six minutes, according to a call report compiled by the Orange County Sheriff's Office and obtained by the Orlando Sentinel. Bruhn said the golfer faded in and out of consciousness.

(Not a ringing endorsement for the Escalade, by the way. Traveling less than 33 MPH, hits a fire hydrant, and gets $5K-$8K worth of damage? Ouch.)

Tiger Woods and his wife. You know the old saying: For every beautiful woman, there's a man who's tired of f*cking her.

It turns out that Mr. Woods might have sustained at least some of his injuries at the hands of his wife, angry over reading about his (alleged) extramarital affairs. If you can believe TMZ, and why wouldn't you?

We're told he said his wife had confronted him about reports that he was seeing another woman. The argument got heated and, according to our source, she scratched his face up. We're told it was then Woods beat a hasty retreat for his SUV -- but according to our source, Woods says his wife followed behind with a golf club. As Tiger drove away, she struck the vehicle several times with the club.

And now we're getting to the reality television show angle. It turns out now that one of Mr. Woods's alleged partners was a contestant on the first season of the irritating VH1 series "Tool Academy." And, if you can believe Radar online (and why wouldn't you?), she blabbed about it to her fellow castmates:

When Jaimee Grubbs was shooting the VH1 reality show, Tool Academy a year ago, she wanted all her costars to know she was having an affair with Tiger Woods, has learned exclusively.

“We all knew about Jaimee’s affair with Tiger Woods because she told us,” Aida Menaska said in an exclusive interview. Jaimee even talked about Tiger when the cameras were rolling! “ I guess they cut it out because VH1 didn’t want to cause problems for Tiger Woods and his wife.”

I watched much of the first season of "Tool Academy," and as I recall, Jaimee Grubbs brought the spiky haired obnoxious guy with her (I know that doesn't really narrow it down)-- but wasn't she with the guy who turned out to have two girlfriends-- and his second girlfriend came on the show about three episodes in, and then Jaimee left? And wasn't the second girlfriend Aida Menaska? (Yes, if you can believe wikipedia, and why wouldn't you?) So, maybe Ms. Menaska's statement should be taken with a grain of salt.

Except, Ms. Grubbs claims to have some photos and "racy text messages" that may prove what she's saying.

Now a Los Angeles cocktail waitress is claiming she and the world's top golfer carried on a torrid 31-month affair - and that she has photos and 300 "racy" text messages to prove it.

Jaimee Grubbs, who says she was 21 when she first hooked up with Woods in April 2007, told Us Weekly their romance began when the duffer tapped her on the shoulder and said, "You don't look like you're having any fun."

Jaimee Grubbs is definitely easy on the eyes. I guess if you can sleep around, you should.

"You don't look like you're having any fun" sounds like a pickup line that would work only for someone who is fabulously wealthy. If I walked up to a woman and said that, she would no doubt reply, "Well, I was, until you started talking to me, you ridiculous gork." Then again, check out samples of those "racy text messages," also from the Radar online report:

Jaimee Grubbs told her story to the new issue of Us Weekly and provided sexual text messages she said she received from Tiger. “I will wear you out...when was the last time you got (bleeped)?” one message read. Another one she said came from Tiger read, “Send me something very naughty.”

"I will wear you out"? "Send me something naughty"? Not exactly Anais Nin, is he? I guess when you're that rich, you don't even have to try.

So, the two biggest stories of the week-- even bigger than president Obama's Afghanistan troops decision-- have reality show connections.

And let us not forget last month's sordid and tragic "Balloon Boy" drama. That family was angling for a reality show of their own, after getting a taste with two episodes of "Wife Swap."

And then today there's the story of a family that appeared on "Extreme Makeover Home Edition", who cannot pay the bills on their made-over home:

The Wofford family of Encinitas, California, got their house from the show five years ago, but now claim that after struggling for two years to pay their bills, they're facing foreclosure . Dr. Brian Wofford, a widower and father of eight, explained the crisis, telling 10News: "A lot of people think when you get the house, you get the mortgage. Well, you don't."

That story was big enough to get a link on yahoo's main page this morning.

And on November 20th, the New York Times saw fit to report on two new "reality" shows, with former actors Steven Seagal and Jesse Ventura:

Mr. Seagal, who merged his martial-arts background with a nebulous acting style to become a steady box office draw in violent films like “Hard to Kill” (1990) and “Under Siege” (1992), lets us in on his under-the-radar second job in “Steven Seagal: Lawman,” a reality show coming to A&E on Dec. 2. It’s a basic ride-along cop show, but one of the cops is Mr. Seagal, who, it turns out, has been a reserve deputy in Jefferson Parish, La., for about 20 years.

And Mr. Ventura, who with stints as a Navy Seal, professional wrestler and governor of Minnesota may already have the most eclectic résumé in America, tries on an investigative hat (of sorts) in “Conspiracy Theory,” a show arriving the same day on TruTV, in which he seeks the truth about secretive government programs, what “really” happened on 9/11 and more.

What "really" happened on 9/11 has already been pretty thoroughly explained, although apparently not to Mr. Ventura's satisfaction, so I think it's safe to ignore him and his stupid show (yes, I'm calling it stupid before even seeing it). But as connoisseurs of reality shows know, Ventura's isn't a "reality" show in the way that Seagal's is. It's more of an "investigative" show in the vein of "Unsolved Mysteries."

The NYT's ignorance over what constitutes a "reality show" is further evidence one needs not read it. That's more news.

Tiger Woods and wife pic source.
Jaimee Grubbs pic source.


shampoo said...

i'm glad i'm not the only one whose first thought was to look askance at the escalade. but then again, it's got a lot of purty stuff on the "grille" so I guess that costs $$$.

tiger woods' wife is so beautiful. I mean, that jamie chick is good-looking, but damn. but then, i'm a girl. so what do I know?

well, I know better to believe aida. hahaha that tool's name was sean, I think. he cried when he had to catch a pig (like an actual little pig that was somewhat cute).

if tiger woods (or anyone) really sent those text messages, they should be embarrassed. that is just gross. I mean, i'd just delete that garbage rather than have it sully my phone. and my phone came with a fergie ringtone.

shampoo said...

i've seen pictures of the accident now. I don't think he was going as slow as the lack of airbags would suggest. maybe he disabled them for some reason? the fire hydrant was knocked over, the front end is in pretty bad shape, the "grille" (this is a new word for me, I thought it was just grill... but I guess not) is the least of the problems. the frame looks bent or something.

Ricky Sprague said...

Doesn't GM make the Escalade? And didn't the US government "bail them out"? And didn't Tiger Woods just appear on the cover of Golf Digest with president Barack Obama?

I'm not really one for conspiracies, but clearly there is something going on here. Something sinister. A conspiracy.