Interview – Dana Moyer3>
This is an account by contestant Dana Moyer, who was on TPiR on March 6th, 2003.
When I received TPIR tickets, we I started trying to book hotel accommodations. Since I have never been to California I didn’t know where to stay. We booked first at The Hyatt thinking that it was going to be nice, boy was I wrong. When we arrived it looked run down, and it smelled. We left and drove around the studio. The Farmers Daughter Motel across from CBS studios, was absolutely disgusting. We ended up at The Hilton at Universal Studios. For the same price as the Hyatt it was a great hotel and only about 15 min. away. My advice is to stay a couple miles away from the studio (it is cheaper and cleaner).
We (4 of us) arrived at the studio at 5:45am. There is a donut shop across the street for coffee and breakfast. The line of cars to park was very long so 2 of us got in line and let them park. I want to note here that it was a miserable rainy day in California and even though we got there 15 min early there were a lot of people there already. The studio gates open at 6:00am
After you get in the gate you go to the waiting area and receive a slip of paper. You may get 2 slips if someone is still parking the car. This slip determines your order for the rest of the day. At all times TPIR staff stresses that you are not guaranteed a seat until you are actually sitting in it. At 7:30am they issue numbers and you are released until a couple of hours before taping.
When you come back, you line up in numerical order and the real waiting starts. This is when you fill out your contestant card, get your name tag, and they check ID. It is important to bring something with your SS# on it, and keep it with you at all times. This is also when the big groups arrive. If they have a lot of groups that day you will get “bumped.” Which means you came a long way for nothing. Although I don’t believe this happens often, TPIR is not very sympathetic to this situation.
After about 3 hours you get in numerical order, once again, and start into the studio. You are told to line up and step against the wall. The producer will the let about 20 people come before him and he asks you your name and where you’re from. There are 4-5 people sitting behind him taking notes. This is your time to shine. You need to make every effort to stand out and be noticed, but not too noticed, if you know what I mean.
I realized everybody was against the wall so he addressed me, I took a step forward and stated my name. Just then a group of college kids started chanting and drowned me out, so I told them to shut-up because it was my turn. When I had the producers attention once again (it was so quiet you could hear a pin drop ), I said very clearly my name and profession. I believe that little mishap is what got me on contestants row.
After an already long day you are finally in the studio and Rod Roddy comes out and tries his best to get the crowd excited and enthusiastic. He goes over the right things to do to be a good contestant. When the show starts it is really loud and it is hard to hear so if you are called they write your name on a cue card so you can read it also. I was the third person called when the show started and did everything I could to make it down to contestants row.
Not to cut this short, but I did not get out of contestants row. I really don’t want to elaborate, but I was out bid by a dollar 3 times. I still have nightmares about it. If you are fortunate enough to be here listen to the audience. No matter how many times you have seen the show, it is loud and your adrenaline is pumping. You are not thinking clear so take the advice of an audience member to help your bidding.
Mr. Barker was very cordial to every one, and in between commercial breaks he talks to the audience. He is kind of sarcastic and a smart ass, but in a somewhat funny and charming way.
If you do get called you cannot go back to your seat the rest of the show. After the show the paper work takes about 45 min. You have to sign a disclaimer about your appearance and sign some papers about your prizes. The lady that does this process is very rude. Here we all are, just been on a game show, and she wanted complete silence while she checked ID’s and handed out paper work. What a bitch.
Although I did not win a car, I did win some consolation prizes for getting to contestants row. They will be shipped via UPS, FedEx, or USPS. I did not have to pay any kind of taxes or shipping costs. You also do not get to pick any colors(e.g. sofa patterns) basically you get what they give you. Another contestant won $13,000 on Plinko and she has to pay California State tax on the money which is around 8-9%. I taped the show on Feb 13, 2003 and as of today, March 5, I have not received any prizes.
Besides some bad hotel reservations and rainy weather, it was great. The whole thing was like the best experience I have ever had. I mean I didn’t get out of contestants row, but I WAS ON THE PRICE IS RIGHT, MAN!!!!!!!!!
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