The Phone Call

I answered the phone.

“What’s your work email address?”

“Excuse me – couldn’t I get a hello? How’s your day going? Any pleasantries whatsoever?”

“Whatever. What’s your work email address?” he responded without emotion.

I told him and minutes later a notice for a casting call for The Amazing Race was in my inbox.

I read it quite enthusiastically. I have never seen the show, but have heard co-workers talk about it. Not being a fan of television, much less reality shows, I couldn’t imagine auditioning. But as I read the advertisement, it sounded like something I would want to be a part of. Teams of two, braving the elements, tackling stunts, deciphering clues, all the while racing around the world. This was my kind of show. With him on the phone, I read all the fine print, the eligibility rules (we qualified), and the application form, all 10 pages. A few questions were biographical, others addressed your relationship with your teammate, yet others your own personal desires and fears. Some I read out loud, “What’s the biggest disappointment you have experienced from your teammate? How are you and your teammate most alike? Most different? Hey, Rob, how are you going to answer those? Huh? What do you think? Can you commit to having this completed by Saturday morning? We’d better get there early, because I bet there are going to be a lot of people trying out. Rob, Rob…”

“Oh, my god. You are already so annoying me. There’s no way I could travel for 45 days with you.”

“But I’m the best chance you’ve got at winning a million dollars.”

There was a moment of silence.

“Okay, I’ll see you Saturday morning,” he said, before hanging up.

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