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Confessions of a Middle Aged Reality TV King

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Those of you who know me know that I'm a reality TV crazy. Shows spanning the spectrum from Wild Boyz, The Ultimate Fighter, Streetball, Beauty and the Geek, Dog the Bounty Hunter, The Surreal Life to that dang American Idol. And though these may seem like an eclectic collection of randomness, I'm, oddly enough, like an old man set in his ways with his favorite underwear brand... Highly particular.

Don't get me wrong... new reality shows are given a chance, but if it doesn't catch my fancy within the first few minutes, Old Man Withers comes out and demands that I shut that garbage off and finish my homework.

Some shows are lucky enough to collect my Nielsen ratings for more than one episode. Heck, I often go a whole season with a show before snapping out of my trance to realize how much time I've been wasting on such nonsense.

For those auspicious few though... (Oooh you lucky little devils you...) They've forever won a place in my heart (and more importantly, space on my to-die-for DVR), assuring obsessed, zombie-like viewership through sleet and sn... well, you know what I mean.

One such show is the juggernaut otherwise known as American Idol. Yes, I'm man enough to admit that I'm addicted to this program beyond belief. Almost to the point of attending regular A.I.A. meetings. Get it? Oh, never mind!

You know it's bad too, when you know who Chicken Little, Mandiva and Princess P are and what Pick Pickler, Soul Patrol, Catching the McPheever and Getting Aboard the E Train means... Sad ain't it?

I don't know what it is either. It's not like the idea is a new one. We've had shows like The Gong Show and Star Search and even Amateur Night at the Apollo in the past. Even copycat shows like Nashville Star (complete with it's own Simon in Anastasia Brown) and the new version of Star Search just don't have the same 'oomph' for some reason. There's just something about this AI Train that makes me not want to get off.

As I write this, we're down to our final 5 (Chris Daughtry, Elliott Yamin, Katharine McPhee, Paris Bennett and Taylor Hicks), and by the time this column comes out, we'll be down to our final 4 or 3, with the show's finale ending on May 24th. I don't know what I'm going to do with myself come June, but for now, let's sit back and enjoy the ride while we have it.

Join me for a little stroll on A.I. Lane won't you? Why don't we take a look at how we can take our obsession to another level in the final few weeks of this season. And for all of you non-believers and non-conformists to the Ministry of A.I., the options below will make you come to the dark side whether you want to or not. If you've got other ideas, feel free to post them in the comments at the bottom of this column.

AI Superfans Donna, Lorraine, Gabby, Shelley, Maribel, and Jamie
AI Superfans Donna, Lorraine, Gabby, Shelley, Maribel, and Jamie

  • Have an office pool - Round up a bunch of your fellow co-workers and see who can choose the bottom three from week to week.

  • Spend "quality" time with your family - It's a good excuse to invite your family over on Tuesday and/or Wednesday nights for dinner while watching the kids do their thang.

  • Hold an American Idol - All Star Challenge Party (you weirdo) - As quoted from the web site, "Challenge your friends and family as you journey through all three levels of competition, from Auditions to the Finals round."

  • Play Fantasy Idol - Much like Fantasy Sports, you can "draft" your favorites and see how you fair against the rest of the online world.

  • Have an American Idol Video Game Party - Available for PlayStation 2, PC and Game Boy Advance.

And the list goes on and on... I was going to mention other activities like reading the message boards, shopping for Idol apparel, catching up on Idol gossip and news online, etc., but I didn't want you to think I was some sort of fan or something. ;)

Now I would be remised at this time if I failed to mention them pioneers of yesteryear who started it all. You know, the Kelly Clarksons and Tamyra Grays of the A.I. world. But the real excitement for this show, especially for us in Hawaii, was when those chaps from our island home made it deep into the competition and made us proud. It was amazing to see how excited our entire State got and how we banded together to get behind our talented youngsters.

Lianne, Kassie and Nan with Jasmine Trias
Lianne, Kassie and Nan with Jasmine Trias

In case you just returned from your 5 year voyage on the moon, they were Jordan Segundo from Season 2, and Jasmine Trias, Camile Velasco, and Jonah Moananu from Season 3. It was surprising to me that after discovering 2 stars like Jasmine and Camile, who went far in Season 3's competition (three if you count Diana DeGarmo), the show didn't return to the islands to find more talent, but I guess that's their prerogative. Hopefully, they'll be back and we can show 'em what we got.

Though American Idol is constantly on my Elevated, yellow level for DVR recordings, the little annoyances and suspected conspiracy theory is starting to get to me. Annoyances like the constant bickering between host Ryan Seacrest and the judges, Simon Cowell's shirt that is 2 sizes too small, Paula Abdul's eccentric clapping style, the excessive commercialism, and the transformation of innocent teens into phony little Hollywood monsters. And am I the only one who suspects that there is a little bit of "tampering" in the results to make good TV? How can one contestant never be close to the bottom three one week and gone the next? Anyway, I digress...

Thanks to the beauty of the web, you can find almost anything on your favorite reality shows, including exclusive, web-only content. Below is a list of cool links for A.I. to check out. For more information on the Digital Video Recorder from Oceanic Time Warner Cable, go to dvr.oceanic.com.

"Hi, My name is Ed. And I'm an American Idol-oholic."

Sugimoto, out!

 

Me and Shell with Camile Velasco
Me and Shell with Camile Velasco

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For more, please visit: www.world-wide-ed.com!


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Comments

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worldwideed — Monday, April 16, 2007
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[PREVIOUS COMMENTS] Name: Donald Remote Name: 205.172.16.132 Date: Monday, May 01, 2006 Time: 11:00 AM Feedback Awesome column! You da dawg! How do you get to work with such beautiful ladies? *************************************************************************** Name: Karen Remote Name: 67.53.40.194 Date: Monday, May 01, 2006 Time: 02:30 PM Feedback Hi, my name is Karen, I'm 43 and I am an American Idol-oholic! Hahahaha! Loved your column! I can definitely relate to you. My friend at work rolls her eyes everytime I talk about the show! I started watching this show when Jasmine and Camile was on. Ever since then I was hooked!! For this season, I'm rooting for Taylor Hicks!! He's da man! Who are you rooting for??? *************************************************************************** Name: Ed Date: Tuesday, May 02, 2006 Time: 10:23 AM Feedback LOL! Thanks "Donald"! *************************************************************************** Name: Ed Date: Tuesday, May 02, 2006 Time: 10:24 AM Feedback Hi Karen, I can't tell you who I am rooting for or my co-workers will key in on my picks! Hehe. Nah! Here's how I think the order will go: Chris Daughtry (winner) Taylor Hicks Katharine McPhee Elliott Yamin Paris Bennett What do you think? *************************************************************************** Name: jane wu Remote Name: 218.163.122.3 Date: Friday, May 05, 2006 Time: 06:04 PM Feedback Dear sirs my name is Jane Wu,one of my friends she ask me help her find a nice family lawyer in hawaii, bcs she have not see her 2 daughters(10 & 7 yo) for 3 years bcs her ex-husband taken them to hawaii the custody is belong to her ex-husband, but in the divorced ducuments she can meet her 2 daughters at any time no matter in taiwan or in hawaii, yes he is hawaii citizen right now. yes our court judged she can see her daughter but our law can not do anything bcs her ex-husband are out of taiwan. so how can I/you help her to ask her ex-husband take the 2 daughters back taiwan?? the 2 girls about 5 & 7 yo, and the mother can not speak basic english, also she is working in our goverment office, the payment less than USD1000/m, many friends talk her try to forget her daughters, what's your opnion? are there any free or not so expencive lawyers serve for no-american women in hawaii?? thanks for your time and looking forward your reply soon, if you can not help may you forward the email to someone can help? should i send more articels to you? regards Jane Wu *************************************************************************** Name: lean wit it Remote Name: 72.130.233.202 Date: Saturday, May 06, 2006 Time: 01:31 PM Feedback i didnt really get it *************************************************************************** Name: Ed Date: Monday, May 08, 2006 Time: 09:33 AM Feedback Not really sure how this applies jane, but if this is not a hoax, I hope you get some help. Also, sorry to hear it lean wit it. *************************************************************************** Name: Who da bes??? Remote Name: 66.91.216.56 Date: Wednesday, May 10, 2006 Time: 07:48 AM Feedback Taylor Hicks Baby! Is that how you spell his last name? Pretty good E! *************************************************************************** Name: Ed Date: Wednesday, May 10, 2006 Time: 09:50 AM Feedback Hehe, thanks Who da bes???, but I stick to my Chris vote. We shall see... :) *************************************************************************** Name: Karen Remote Name: 67.53.40.194 Date: Friday, May 12, 2006 Time: 10:44 AM Feedback I agree with Who Da Bes! Taylor Hicks NO KA OI!!! Bye, bye Chris. It was shocking but he's an awesome singer and will do good on his own. Taylor sings with heart and is just a super performer. *************************************************************************** Name: Nan Remote Name: 72.130.213.105 Date: Friday, May 12, 2006 Time: 09:33 PM Feedback Dang It! I like it *************************************************************************** Name: Ed Date: Monday, May 15, 2006 Time: 11:18 AM Feedback I agree with you Karen, but it bums me out because I'm out of my office pool for the top 5 picks. :( Oh well. We'll get 'em next year! *************************************************************************** Name: Ed Date: Monday, May 15, 2006 Time: 11:19 AM Feedback Hehe, thanks Nan! *************************************************************************** Name: task Remote Name: 66.91.73.55 Date: Monday, May 22, 2006 Time: 12:37 PM Feedback post my commit *************************************************************************** Name: Ed Date: Monday, May 22, 2006 Time: 03:14 PM Feedback task: Um, if you meant comment, it worked...



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Regarding the Kilauea volcano lava flow.

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