Thursday, August 28, 2008

Project Subway Platform

So I was at 34th Street on the subway platform waiting for the 1 train a few weeks ago. And I saw this dark-haired guy standing there waiting for the train. And I thought to myself, hey I know that guy! Where do I know him from? Did we do a show together? He was small and bearded and kinda theater-y looking. So I smiled a big, dumb, goofy smile. And he looked right past me.

Which made me feel kind of lousy for a second. And then I realized. He's that guy from Project Runway. Kevin, from Season 4. Not the one who cried all the time. That was Ricky. The other guy. Kevin. I liked him. That's probably why when I saw him, I assumed he was my friend.

What a strange thing it is to be a reality TV star. Because when it ends, unless you "win", you're back to riding the subway. The money's not that good, I don't think. If you don't win. I mean, it's better than waiting tables. But you know, you're not gonna retire on it. So unless you "hit" somehow... either win the whole thing or become the breakout story, you're back on the 1 train, pounding the pavement, scrambling for work.

Kinda like what it is to be just a person living in New York.

And note, I still ride the subway every day.


cyberpenguin said...

Hi Wendy,
Some of the eliminated contestants from Project Runway have in fact been able to leverage their newfound-albeit-brief fame to jumpstart their careers. Some examples of the more pro-active go-getters from past seasons include Laura, Austin, & Nick (Verreos), etc. Of course, the TV/media exposure can certainly help to further their careers in fashion design, but it's ultimately a combination of the opportunities offered by hiring companies & investors, etc., & what the contestants themselves decide to do with their reality TV fame. If they're smart, they'll make the most of their experiences while their names are still fresh in the minds of their TV audience. Ultimately, they'll need to find ways to make the most of their brief fame to extend their influence beyond the scope of the show -- i.e., do commercials & guest appearances on the show (i.e., guest judge or some other role, etc.) to stay in the public eye & at the forefront of the fashion world.

cyberpenguin said...

(continued) Of course, who knows how much they're getting paid to appear as a guest judge, etc., but I'm sure the commercials pay fairly well.

I'm sure that having Project Runway on Kevin's resume probably will help him the next time he goes to get a job.

I wonder what Kevin's been doing these days. The last I heard he got a gig designing clothes for Rachel Ray, a woman whose voice is even more annoying than some of teenage clients the designers took on for the prom dress challenge. ;-)

Wendy said...

Hey Corey,
Yeah Kevin's doing just fine for himself I'm sure. What struck me was just that thing of one second you're on TV and the next you're scrambling again...even if you do have a nice big fat credit on your resume. You're still not taking a limo to work...

Thanks so much for reading! How's the running going?

cyberpenguin said...

Hi Wendy,

Yes, that's true. TV fame is no guarantee of success, but I'm sure it helps for recognition purposes when designers go to present their portfolio to a fashion house.

BTW, I really like your blogs! You're an excellent writer.

So how're you & your family doing? Please send everyone my regards. Baby Kate is such a cutie! ;-) Maybe we'll see you in Lewisburg one of these days! Will you be coming home for the winter holidays?


P.S. Thanks for asking about the running. It's going well. I'm sure you've probably seen all of my 10 zillion tweets about it, so no need for me to blather on about it here! ;-)

cyberpenguin said...

BTW, I just saw this article about Jeffrey Sebelia. It seems that sometimes it's not easy even for the winners of Project Runway. Hmmph!

Wendy said...

Thank you so much for this link! Fascinating, right?