Lights, Camera…..ACTION!!! Glitz, Glam, autograph hunters…..You know who u’re talkin’ too??? I am Lady Rugga, baby!!! TRIIIIIIIIEEEEEEEEEEENNNNNNNNNnnnnnnnnnnnnng…. this is your wake-up call….
At the very high risk of receiving the “sour grapes” comments , I just HAVE to share my encounter with what I thought was my new destiny!
Okay, so a few weeks ago the latest in “reality TV” hit South Africa….The telephone calls started coming: “did you see they are looking for Lady Rugga?” Then on facebook : “Icey, did you see they are looking for Lady Rugga?? Are you gonna go?” I got a sms from an old friend whom I have not seen in donkey years: “I was reading People’s magazine and they are looking for Lady Rugga, I was thinking of you”. Even one on Sharksworld. And off course (my most unexpected one) my (Blue Bulls supporting!?) brother in law: “Why don’t Ice go for this??”. And so, for the first time since I heard about it, I actually started thinking about this whole thing….
Like I am, I hit Google hard and fast on “Lady Rugga” and after a lot of searching eventually manage to get the spot on Supersport.com…..not much information. Very, very vague….”Do you know the difference between a scrum and a rolling mall?”… “camera-friendly female”, “over the age of 18”, “passionate about rugby”….. Tick, Tick, Tick, Tick – sommer all the boxes…
Just then and there I decided – I am going for it! Then the research started. Now – I am one of those chicks who can stand around a braaivleis fire, beer in hand and talk rugby just as loud as any man I know, but I guess just as much bullshit too! So research was inevitable.
I then started getting the “I am sure they will be looking for a young person” from naysayers…all that crap I don’t need at this stage of my age! And off course you start doubting yourself. So one thing good that came out of this ordeal was http://www.irblaws.com/EN . I sat evenings doing my rugby law exams on this site – now it’s one of my favourite PC games! Check it out!! “Know the laws!” TICK
Now for the husband: On returning from a business trip from Cape Town – I sat him down by the dining room table: “Please don’t be cross, but I AM going for the audition”. He was not very impressed with this whole idea. But I was adamant – I just HAD to try this, otherwise I would always wonder, you know.
Now for the most important part: The look. I unfortunately do not have the fountain of forever youth on my side, so Google “Professional TV make-up”, “what do female sports presenters wear?” In the end I decided – be professional, need to look decent, this is after all for the RWC! DING!!! Red Light!! Wrong!! You’re the weakest link – GOODBYE!!
Then the first auditions started and with this, the first paw-paw hit the fan. A freelance presenter (I have met her before) has gone through to round two. She is “sort of” an employee of Supersport. Red Light number two. I cannot recall ANY rugby tweets from her.. ever….more what I wear, what I do, what I don’t like about other people…you get the picture? (Oh – and I see she has actually putting in an effort lately to say something about rugby..even if it’s just the Varsity Cup final score!)
Then came the Coca Cola Park auditions. My turn. Left house at 9. Dark classy denims, pinks (very nice and funky) stiletto’s, dark pinstripe suite jacket, pink blouse – it looked professional yet not “office-bound”…GPS takes me straight through Jozie CBD and then decided to die on me ….so by the time I arrived – an half hour trip turned into 1 hour 15 minutes! And then the queue….it was not long at all – 50 perhaps 80 meters? Yeah, riiiiigghtttt….
Started chatting to the ladies round me. “I cannot believe there are so many women knowing about rugby” she said. “Nah, I reckon a lot is just taking a chance – who do you support?” says me. “Bulls are my team!!” and then I said: “ Crusaders are 7 nil up” (with a scmuck smile off course!). “Against whom?” Huh????????? Just against YOUR fricken team, Chick!! So much for you being passionate about rugby – don’t even know when your own team is playing…red light nr 3.
Swallow my last Urbanol, and rescue tabs – these butterflies are KILLING me!!…..It went on killing me softly for just less than 6 HOURS!!! Yeah…no food, dressed in dark colours in the sun…pretty fricken awesome…riiiighhht. That long wait got all of us a bit despondent. But we tried to kill the time by having chats and me seeming to give all my knowledge to young blondes with note pads.
By now I have been thinking HARD about this being a good idea or not and what my odds was….(my head said none, my heart said 100), but I have been in this queue for over 4 hours, so just cannot bail out now.
What really got me pee-ed was this girl. So, it’s just before 16h00, I asked her who she supports. “Sharks” – Yess!!! This chick knows her rugga! So I show her a lovely picture of our young SuperPat without shirt at practice (which was so kindly forwarded to me by our very own SharonvanWyk )…”Oh, is that Francois Steyn? He plays fullback for us, doesn’t he?” WTF???? I was SPEECHLESS!
So then came our time for “screening”. Needless to say – after such a long wait, much of the “camouflage” on my face was gone, I was irritated, tired and hungry.….Derek Alberts really did NOT look like he liked me. I was HAMMERED with questions. And admittedly got a few answers wrong – although I have to add in my defense – I knew them as soon as I was out that dreaded room! He did not want to give me a chance in front of the camera! But when it comes to going down, I have a thing or two on Jesse James! Icey goes down in flames, baby! Neeee, jou blixem! I waited for over 5 hours….you WILL give me a shot in front of the judges…So I hit him…no! no! not as in blixem – with a question! “Did you know that if you catch a mark, you can choose a scrum instead of kicking?” No…he did not! And based on THAT and that he said I know my current stuff, he will put me through. Mission accomplished. (Remind me to take him off my Christmas mailing list).
The next red light. There was this (very lovely lady – ex GF of an ex Bok player) blonde, 6 foot 2 model just behind me. She also made it through….when I asked her what questions she got she said she was just asked why she wants to be Lady Rugga??!! I had to answer THAT, the 101 questions AND had to present my lines AND outsmart them with laws to be able to get where I was waiting now…..Another got through because she had false nails done in different teams’ colours…. Another wrong-side-of-thirties lady came through – she was asked in what year and by whom was the first RWC won. A lot more difficult than “why you wanna be lady rugga?” And don’t tell me all of these presenters know all these things off by heart. That is rugby trivia, not knowledge of the game.
And here comes the really funny part…Walk in, go and stand on the square, lights and cameras on me. “Now what now?” Had a camera on the left corner and a camera on the right corner – and a white wall in front of me….then a voice on my right said…”here I am” , but if you choose to present at the wall its’ okay!” Crystal Arnold at least made me laugh and made me feel better…at least for a split second! Because when she said I tilted my head when I spoke, and therefore don’t think she will give me the go-ahead, I was like “Sorry?!?” She replied that I obviously did not even realize that I do this. NO, Ms Arnold, I meant that – do I look like a professional presenter?? Supersport said they will give training to the winner?…is that REALLY a reason to not give me a chance?” tell me I was poo rather….. BTW Crystal, have you heard ME burp yet?? That chick from Bloem will look like a kitten meowing…. It was overs kedovers…
So, what is my take on this then? I really do think this is a great idea. But I would have done things differently and more thought -through.
- I would have defined exactly what I was looking for, eg. 18 – 35 – because they are not looking for an older person…they can say what they want. Although I think an older person might have come across a lot more believable to especially the older generation who still believes a woman belongs in the kitchen.
- I would say to people you need have very good looks – because let’s be honest – the criteria of camera friendly does not necessarily mean you need to look like a model in my books….so, way too vague on that point.
- Not say we want people who have not presented before and then sent them through – this is an unfair advantage over a lot of hopefuls.
- Set up a few sets of questions that would screen and test all the people – equally. That would seem a hell of a lot fairer.
- At an audition, at least have 3 judges, and not just one judge like I had – at least there would be more than one opinion. One would think that at a venue like Coca Cola Park, with the high turnout of ladies was over 200, that could be the least they could have done.
But it seems like Supersport might be keeping there options open – should this not work out – they say not to quite your day-job as yet as it’s only a contract or at least initially. Blessing in disguise, as I was looking for a career change! Could not juggle my day job, my SW job AND a weekend job with a family.
Okay – now for the question. Did I purely do it just because I wanted to try? NO. Would I do it again? YES, I would!! A million times YES! Like one guy remarked to a friend while we waited in that short but long queue: “Every single lady here believes in her heart that she is “Lady Rugga”….
However THIS time I will dress up in my sexiest pair of Sissy Boy’s, the lowest cut top with my bestest “Magnifier Triumph” bra, I’ll glue back the 25cm locks of hair I cut off about a month ago, I’ll go for Botox around the eyes and I’ll pay R2000 to my friend Hannon for professional make-up. Perhaps then someone will notice me and give me the time and realise that I AM actually the lady Rugga you were looking for! Sorry, Supersport…your loss!Tweet