I'm still looking for my 15 minutes of fame, so when I see an open casting for the TV show Sex, Toys And Chocolate on the Life Network, I think, "This is my chance."
If Paris Hilton can become famous, why can't I? A few years ago you were probably like, "Paris who?" Then her infamous sex tape came out, and now she's well known all over the world for her lack of talent.
I pick up the phone and dial. My hands are actually sweating. A male voice answers.
"Uh, yes. I would like to audition for Sex, Toys And Chocolate. I, uh, like chocolate, toys are okay and, uh, sex is, uh, interesting," I mutter.
There's silence on the other end, then a burst of boyish giggles.
"I think you got the wrong number. You are . "
I hang up. Whew. Let me try that again. I finally get through to one of the producers, Jeff Brand. He graduated a few years ago from Ryerson where I'm currently enrolled. I feel a sudden bond with him. Ryerson graduates get jobs. Yeah.
"All you have to bring to the audition is yourself and your sex stories. It's pretty casual and easy, just a candid conversation about sex," Brand says.
I hang up somewhat reassured, but before I commit I ask my classmates if I should audition.
Their responses are all the same: "I wouldn't do it. Never. People see you." (That is the idea.) "It's not something I'd do. You have to be kinda out there. You'd be good at it." (That seems like a backhanded compliment.)
And the best comment: "You're going to be talking about toys? Do you mean action figures?"
* * *
"Jennifer, are you into passionate or hardcore sex?" she asks like it's the most ordinary question in the world. I can't believe this. And she's been calling me Jennifer the whole time. I'm at the "audition," sitting in a room the size of a closet while an exceptionally attractive woman named Mercedez asks me questions and videotapes me while her co-worker watches.
I'd filled out a quick questionnaire earlier, and now she's firing off questions.
I dodge this one just as I did the other six.
"So tell me about the wild, crazy college sex at school, Jennifer."
"Well," I start, "I'm not personally getting any, but there was this one girl who used to masturbate in the school library."
This piques her interest. I tell her about a girl at Ryerson who's really plain-looking, dresses like a nun and is quite bland. You'd never suspect that she brings her video camera to the library and masturbates for her website.
"Who would have thought this innocent-looking girl could be so naughty. This just reaffirms my theory that the quietest ones are the most devious."
"Interesting. You've put down that your favourite body part is your brain. Out of a thousand people we've seen, would you believe that only three wrote that in?" she asks.
I can only imagine what the other people have written.
My nerves have calmed down, and she tells me we're almost done. I'm actually starting to enjoy myself. Being the centre of attention is quite lovely, actually; I feel kind of important with the camera focused on me. I wonder if this is how Paris Hilton feels.
"Thank you very much, Jennifer. You were a natural in front of the camera. The only problem is that you look very young, and our audience might be uncomfortable with that," she says.
Chosen participants will be contacted in a few weeks. If I'm invited to appear on the show, I won't get paid but will receive an adult goodie bag filled with sex products and action figures. If I decide to do it, I'm expected to sit in a circle with complete strangers and spill my guts on national television so my friends, enemies, co-workers, potential bosses and my poor parents can find out my dark, treasured secrets.
I won't be waiting by the phone.