So the time had finally come for me to make my trip to Philadelphia for the "Jeopardy!" Audition. When my new "road dawg" - my Brother-in-law, Mike - found out about the audition, he didn't waste time in letting me know he wanted to take the road trip with me, which was pretty cool.
My audition time was 11:30AM. We got rolling early (around 6:45 or so) to try to avoid catching the worst of the morning rush hour traffic. The plan worked great, as we pulled in front of the Sheraton Society Hill, where the auditions were taking place, a little after 8:30 - but that left me with almost three hours to kill before the audition.
Since neither of us had eaten yet, the first order of business was breakfast. We quickly found the hotel restaurant, where after standing unattended to for a few minutes, we were greeted by the manager, an attractive, perky, 40ish blond who instantly turned on all the charm and flirtation she could muster towards us - or more accurately, towards Mike:
"Would you prefer to sit in the back, or up here in front with a view of the lobby?", the manager asked.
"How about right here?" Mike asked, pointed to a raised table and chairs at the front of the restaurant, which looked directly out onto the lobby.
"Well now, that's a good choice", she said, as she led Mike around to the opposite side of the table. "You should want every body to see you; you look just like a movie star!" She held the chair out for the "movie star", who was wearing an ordinary blue sweater, jeans, and white sneakers. Meanwhile, I - wearing a nice grey suit with a brown and white pinstripe shirt with French cuffs, and brown shoes polished to a perfect shine - got no such love; I seated myself.
"Can I get you gentlemen something to drink?" she asked, and we placed our orders.
"What are your names, by the way?"
"Michael? Wow, I've always loved that name! Everyone I know named Michael is just a wonderful, wonderful person! How about you sir, what's your name?"
"Okay, well let me go get those drinks for ya!"
(I was beginning to have doubts about this "road dawg" idea)
After we devoured breakfast, there were still a couple hours until the audition. Mike and I walked around the lobby for a few minutes, then found ourselves in a smaller room just off the lobby. The room looked like it could have been used for small meetings; it had four plush chairs, a fireplace, and sliding wooden doors.
We sit down, got comfortable, made some small talk about the decor of the room, and of the hotel in general. Everything was nice and relaxed, and I wasn't worried at all about the audition. But then...UH OH! I looked at Mike, Mike looked at me, and we both knew: the "ITIS" had descended upon us both! What's more, I had, for some reason, woke up around 3:30AM, and in all my excitement and anticipation, never made it back to sleep. So now I was REALLY feeling it...
"Look, man" Mike yawned, as he sunk deeper into his chair (which, since it was identical to mine, I knew was ridiculously comfortable), "You can close your eyes if you want to. I'll make sure you don't oversleep."
As I looked at the race between his ass and his eyelids to see which could droop the lowest the fastest I knew his idea had a fatal flaw: this here knee-grow was going to be asleep BEFORE I would be; who the hell was gonna wake HIM up so he could wake ME up? So I pulled out my cell phone and set the alarm for 10:30 - I thought...
Next thing I know, I sat straight up in my ridiculously comfortable chair like somebody had jolted me with an electric cattle prod...
OH MY GOD, WHAT TIME IS IT???
(TO BE CONTINUED...)