This Week's Contestant
|Theme:||Wheel Loves L.A.|
Thinking about my day on the show still makes me smile! The trip was important in so many ways, not only for the obvious reasons, but also because my whole family wound up coming, which I totally didn't expect! Neither of my parents ever fly, so the fact that they were coming across the country to support me was amazing! When I arrived that day and first saw the actually wheel I got tears in my eyes (cheesy but true!) I just couldn't believe I was finally there, about to be a contestant on a show I've grown up watching my whole life! Even more exciting, as we were being briefed by the producers on some of the day's happenings, a woman came up from behind us and said hello..."Say hi to Vanna guys!" one of the producers said, as we all turned around in disbelief to see that it was Vanna White herself, just casually strolling through the set to greet us! She was in sweatpants, with no makeup on, eating a doughnut, no lessand still looked absolutely stunning!
The day only went uphill from there! The wheel was A LOT heavier than I imagined and it was a lot harder playing in front of a live audience as opposed to shouting the answers at the TV in my living room, but other than that everything went pretty smoothly. I didn't do as well as I expected in the first few rounds, and was especially bummed after going bankrupt during a puzzle I knew the answer to but was spinning "one last time" to try and get more money. I learned my lesson though, which is why when it came to the prize puzzle round I wasn't taking any chances.
The prize puzzle lit up and I immediately started with the first small word that had an apostrophealways a great place to start. Then, as I was sounding out possible phrases in my head"I'll have what she's having...I've got a funny feeling... I've got a bad feeling..."it hit me! "I've got a GOOD feeling about this!" I was trembling with excitement and nervousness, all at the same time. It wasn't my turn, and if the answer had come to me that easily, surely it would come to Rick. He took his turn and shouted "R". Immediately I went through the phrase in my head and realized there was no R! This is when I started panicking... do I solve? Is that crazy? It is a prize puzzle? OK, I'll spin once. Then I froze... I was so ecstatic about knowing the puzzle, I didn't even think of what letter to call! All I could picture was the longest word, "FEELING", so I just yelled out "L". Once it landed in the correct spot on the board, I knew I was right and went for the solve. There were some screams of shock in the audience and everyone on set seemed a bit confused, but I didn't want to risk another lost turn on a puzzle I knew the answer to...plus, I needed that vacation!
The rest of the game I was on a complete high! My confidence was back and I sailed through the rest, eventually making it to the bonus round. The money I won was more than I anticipated, but far better was the experience of having Pat say to me that I had "...the fastest solve the show had ever seen". It's funny, I was initially mad at myself for calling an "L", rather than a "G" or "T" in that prize puzzle, which would have put $1,800 more in my bank account, but looking back I have no regret whatsoever, because having three letters in the puzzle when I solved, as opposed to one, wouldn't have led to all of the media craziness that ensued after the show! The video of my one-letter solve immediately went viral and I was asked to appear on tons of TV and radio interviews, including The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Anderson Cooper, Good Day NY, The CBS early show and several others! I was even asked by the Game Show Network to appear in one of their commercials! It was more than I could have ever asked for or imagined, a bit overwhelming even, but definitely a fun ride! I've used the prize money so far to pay off my student loans, start my fashion blog and purchase an upcoming trip to Budapest and Prague! The rest is still in savings until I figure out exactly what I want to do with it. The trip I won to Grenada was also amazing, I couldn't have asked for a better resort to stay at than LaSource, and I can't wait to go back! Wheel of Fortune definitely changed my life for the better and it's an experience I will always look back on with the greatest of memories.