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Know Your Role
January 25

Let me preface this by saying that I did not bear witness to what I am about to describe. I heard it on the radio, and checked it out on the internet to see for myself.

Andrew Fenton, an unemployed musician who appeared at the Boston musicians got a scolding from everyone in the room even before he began to sing. Andrew complained about having to wait all day for his chance before the judges, and Kara told him that there were people who would wait years for the chance to be on American Idol, which is true. After all of this, Andrew gets down to sing "House of the Rising Sun," and was decent, but his poisoning of the well beforehand sealed his fate. Don't call us, we'll call you.

Several years ago, when Millionaire started their daily version, I journeyed up to Seattle to try and get a spot in the hot seat. I woke up at five in the morning to get there hours ahead of time. Told that I might not make it because they would only take the first group of 250 applicants, I was a bit miffed. After all, I had done quite a bit of traveling to get there. But I didn't throw a hissy fit over it. (As it happens, they administered a few more rounds of the test.)

Anything worth doing is worth doing one hundred percent. You will have to wake up earlier, stay later, and work harder than the next guy in order to get noticed. If you are faster, better and better than the next guy, then you will succeed. Life is as simple as that.

Sadly, Andrew was given his chance to sing. If I was one of the judges, the instant he started to complain, I would have tossed him out on his ear. But this is a television show, and everyone knows their role. Andrew is supposed to be the put-upon hopeful who could be at home doing things like applying for food stamps or hacking around on his XBox instead of attending the tryouts. The judges played right into the situation by engaging Andrew in the argument, instead of shutting down. And the producers of the show chose to air this particular piece of tape instead of burying it, because at this stage, the producers want that bit of water cooler conversation.

And we eat it up, so the producers keep putting this stuff out there for us. Sadly, the show is still going to be around for another four months. Let me know how it ends, will you?

Travis Eberle can be reached at traviseberle@gmail.com. Sing a few bars for him and he'll tell you if you can move on to Hollywood.