Celebrity Apprentice – Prologue

“Tide-toGo. Tide-to-Go. Tide-toGo. Tide-to-Go.” Remember Tide-to-Go? Not the product: the Apprentice episode.

For those of you who don’t, back in (I think) season 4 the two teams on The Apprentice were given the task of putting on competing street-theater type events promoting Proctor & Gamble’s new clothes-cleaning solution, Tide-to-Go. The winning team put on a reasonably slick street circus with clowns, acrobats, balloons and face painting. The losers tried to ad-lib a Tide-to-Go rap from a curbside flatbed stage. The ad-lib quickly collapsed when the would-be apprentices discovered MTV makes saying things in rhyme look a lot easier than it is. After several seconds of silence (save for a karaoke rap track blasting into the ears of the passing lunch hour crowd) the rap was re-invented as the chant, “Tide-to-Go, Tide-to-Go.” After ten minutes of repeating the catch (and only) phrase, the apprentices began to slur their words, eventually causing the chant to sound like Tried-to-Go, Tried-to-Go. This caused passing pedestrians to avoid the apprentices handing out Tide-to-Go samples, which bore a passing resemblance to very large suppositories.

I mention the Tide-to-Go episode as prologue to the Apprentice 7 for this reason: every time I see a Tide-to-Go package, that annoying chant plays in my head. Given the contestants participating in The Celebrity Apprentice edition, it seems the folks who did the casting had the same problem. The more annoying a celebrity applicant, the more that celebrity’s name played in the casting agents’ heads. And the 14 finalists are:

Trace Adkins, singer/author. He says he wrote his memoir, A Personal Stand: Observations and Opinions of a Freethinking Roughneck, to air his thoughts on political issues, adding, “I don’t believe the stage is the place to espouse those views.” Hey, Trace: based on your work to date (and I’m thinking here of American Man, volumes 1 and 2), you already have. Oh – and nice job on the New Year’s Day appearance on Hannity & Colmes.

Carol Alt, model/actress. According to her website, her “(f)ans around the world will be glad to hear that Carol has not only been very busy nationally, but internationally as well.” So there, all of you who were wondering whatever happened to…

Stephen Baldwin, actor/brother. Loved him in The Usual Suspects, rooted for him in The Surreal Life and Fear Factor, cringed when he talked on CNN about making Christ hip for the kids. But he’s still my favorite Baldwin brother. A #3 is my favorite of all the drill bits my dentist used when he gave me a root canal.

Nadia Comaneci, Olympic/gymnast. She’s 45 now. The youngest of her 5 gold medals turns 28 this summer.

Tiffany Fallon, naked/lady. Playboy’s Playmate of the Year 2005.

Nely Galan, producer/Latina. Ms. Galan created The Swan, which last aired in late 2004. If you go to her official website and click on the link to “Check out schedules for TV shows, auditions, book release, magazine release, tour dates, etc.”, you land on a web page that advises, “The Swan 3 Coming Soon. Mall tour across America coming in 2005! Keep checking back for more info,” and nothing more.

Marilu Henner actor/author. Her business acumen lies in her health and diet books and the Discovery Channel series Shape Up Your Life, which is based on them. She doesn’t think much of dairy foods. I’m starting to think I might be lactose intolerant. Every time I eat more than two hot fudge sundaes I feel bloated.

Lennox Lewis, boxer/bait. I’ll never forget the Tyson fight. Will we be able to tell which ear?

Jennie Finch, softball/player. Ms. Finch has won 3 gold medals as a member of the US Olympic Women’s Softball Team. Yeah, I know what you’re thinking. Not all of them. Ms Finch is a practicing heterosexual. But I bet she’s got some wicked locker room stories.

Omarosa, contestant/villain. While Apprentice veteran Omarosa has done many talk and reality shows, her personal website, http://www.omarosa.com/, makes it clear there is a side to her few of us ever suspected. Who knew she “servers” as a managing partner for a strategic planning consultancy service with a “full-service appraoch” to business solutions. Sample solution: “Here’s what’s wrong, Gates – this damn spell check thingy is slowing everything down. We’ll just disable that little sucker right now.”

Piers Morgan, editor/talent show judge. This judge from the NBC summer series America’s Got Talent was, at the age of 28, the youngest ever editor of the UK tabloid, News of the World. Is it true that the paper once carried a story in its Silver Linings section, headlined, “Vampire Attacks on Decline since AIDS”?

Tito Ortiz, UFC/fighter. In 2003 Ortiz, the reigning UFC light heavyweight champ, lost the title to Randy Couture. Couture humiliated him by delivering a literal spanking during the bout. Hey Tito: keep an eye on Omarosa. I’ve long suspected that she, too, likes to spank boys.

Vincent Pastore, actor. Not Vince, the pussy from Entourage. This is the real deal – Big Pussy from The Sopranos.

Gene Simmons, musician/tongue. My bet for first person to be eliminated. Why? Because he rocks and rolls all night and part of every day.

So that’s the cast. Watching these egos sell lemon-aide on the streets of Manhattan is going to be a train wreck, which is what we all are waiting for. I only wish they were playing for a large cash prize that was their’s to keep. Then we’d see real blood.

Lyle Burwell

President, VPTV, The Directory of Viewer Participation TeleVision. For VPTV’s recaps of every episode of Celebrity Apprentice, check the VPTV: Recaps Page every Friday.

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