I put on my tarty best: brown jeans, tiny black top that buttoned down to expose my “ample bosom,” red lipstick, black eyeliner, and teased blonde hair in trashy finest. My call was at six, so I left 45 minutes early to account for afternoon traffic and possible parking problems.
I was in the building at 5:30.
I walked up to a man talking loudly, who carried a clipboard. “Are you Guy?” I asked him.
“No, baby,” he answered, already mesmerized by the ta-tas. “You meeting someone? He’s probably upstairs at the bar.” He talked like I was five. “Just go up these stairs right here.”
The hostess asked, “You’re here for the dating seminar?”
I was told we were doing a parody of speed dating, where you get five minutes to impress someone at a table before moving on to the next man at a table, responding to the timer bell like some kind of trick dog.
“In the back, there.”
One woman was sitting at a table, writing things on index cards. She introduced herself as the producer of the segment and I sat down beside her. She was very friendly to me as I introduced myself.
“I’m the Big Boob Girl,” I smiled.
“He mentioned a Pam,” she smiled back.
“I was wondering if I could do Southern instead of Valley.” I launched into my nervous routine, showing her some of my stylin’ skillz. She gave a polite smile. “Yes, I think that’s be fine,” she said. As I assumed, she made me change my shirt, opting for a red top instead of a black one, even though the red didn’t expose my chest enough.
Another woman walked up and said she was with the dating company. I smiled and introduced myself. “I’m Big Boob Girl.”
The woman shook my hand with an expression that read many things at once. A) She had no idea that those were the words that were going to come out of my mouth. B) She had no idea what I was talking about. C) She deals with desperate people every single day, and I’m probably not the first one to reduce myself to a stereotype just to get a date. D) I’m the earliest potential dater she’s ever seen.
The producer and the dating lady chatted about the set-up of the tables, and the producer told her what they were planning on doing for the segment. After the dating lady went away I leaned towards the producer and asked quietly, “Not everybody’s in on this, are they?”
“Well…” she responded. “Not exactly.”
I stopped introducing myself as Big Boob Girl.
Guy showed up at this point, commented that I was early (at this point it was six), and clearly looked disappointed about the size of my chest. I told him that my other shirt made me tittier, which led the producer to explain how red was a better color for me based off the booth we were shooting in, blah, blah, blah. She put her hands down my top to show him how we could fold the fabric to expose more of my chest.
I tried reading a book, but the bar was noisy and people were running about setting up for this actual dating seminar where real people were going to speed date, televisions were around my head playing sporting events, and loud music played near my ear. The nice producer let me read her “People” instead.
“When does this air?” I asked her.
“Oh. Well, we don’t really know. It might not actually air, you see. It’s up to Jay. If Jay likes it, then it’ll probably go up in a couple of weeks or something. It takes a while to edit. You have Guy’s number? Just call him in a couple of days. I’m sure he’ll call you when he knows a time.”
It just kept getting better.
I paged my sister on my text thingy: “not on tonight. call mom. maybe a couple of weeks.”
“How early am I?” I asked. “What time was everyone supposed to be here?”
“By seven,” she said. I told her that my call was six. “You weren’t briefed very well,” she says to me. “I knew I should have made the calls. Honey, pull your sleeves up. We want to show as much of your body as possible.”
My sister paged back: “too late. i already told everyone i work with to watch tonight. couldn’t you have told me earlier?” I pictured tens of people pissed off that they had to watch Leno for the first night in their young lives, wondering why anybody would try to do what I was doing.
Other girls started showing up soon after, and we quietly introduced ourselves, each of us unsure as to what we were doing. Were we supposed to be in character? We were we going to have to meet all of these other guys that were here for the speed dating? Where were any other women?
Meet the undatables: the low talker, the crazy cat lady, the angry Vietnamese girl, and slutty Big Boob Girl. We looked around and saw one tiny, pretty blonde in a blue top.
“Hey,” I said to Guy. “What’s with the blonde? What’s her angle?”
“She’s the winner, right?” Crazy Cat Lady asked.
“Oh, yeah. She’s the winner.”
“So, she’s not funny?” I asked.
“Honey, she doesn’t have to be anything. Look at her!”
They taped my shirt to my bra strap so my breasts rolled out the top.
In walks Britney Spears. In the darkened bar, I thought for a second that she was making some kind of cameo. Then as she got closer I saw that she was just a very good lookalike. Then she spoke. In Romanian. You know what’s sexier than Britney Spears? A Romanian Britney Spears.
“I don’t know why you’re picking Blue Top Blonde when you’ve got Romanian Britney Spears complete with tattoo over there.”
“My job’s rough, I know,” he smiled. “Are you gonna show more boob?”
We Undatables had to fill out release forms that, among other things, swore we weren’t running for public office in the next six months. We awkwardly stood around as people who actually wanted to find dates started filing into the room. We didn’t know what to do: if we mingled, it might look like we were trying to get dates. We were in the strange position of openly mocking these people that were looking for love in all the strange places.
“I’m so glad I’m married,” Crazy Cat Lady said to me. Over her shoulder, a sad single girl caught my eye, holding her margarita glass just under her chin. I could tell she had heard us. My stomach sank.
The other girls had been briefed a little better than I had. Apparently there was even a meeting over the weekend. “Not only will it probably not air,” one girl said to me, “but they’re only using us if the real dating people aren’t funny enough. We’re just in case they need more tape.”
Glorious. My feet were hurting and nobody had offered any of us a drink yet. I started getting grumpy, wondering why Blue Top and Britney wouldn’t talk to us.
“It’s like high school all over again,” we agreed.
They started handing us nametags. “Woah!” I said. “This has my real name on it.”
“Is that a problem?” the dating lady asked.
“Uh, yeah.” All the other Undatables vigorously nodded their heads. “No real names.” We debated switching our nametags around, but then opted for completely fake names. I got my new nametag and used it to pull my shirt collar down to my bra, exposing just the amount of boob they’d been asking for. The Undatables all agreed that I was finally living up to Big Boob Girl promises.
Kevin (Eubanks? is that his last name?), the music guy from the show was there to do a bit. Everyone crowded around him, shaking his hand, telling him what an amazing musician he is. He turned to me. “Have we met before? I’m sure we have.” He kept his hand hovering near my titties as he looked at me. Clearly, the nametag was working.
“I guarantee you thousands of dollars that you and I have never met before,” I said. “Unless you love Los Angeles comedy theatre, or you watch ABC late at night.” His hand was still hovering, so I slid my hand into it. “But I’ll shake your hand again, if that’s what you want.”
They moved Kevin to the other side of the crowd. I turned to find that Romanian Britney had stolen my nametag idea, and was using hers to draw attention to her breasts. “That’s my bit!” I said to nobody.
“Matt 17 is totally checking you out,” Low Talker informed me.
7:30. Getting pretty silly at this point, and after a few establishing shots, they decide to film me first, as I’ve been there since the beginning of time. I sit at the table.
“As much boob as you can show,” he says to me. “Nipple would be fine.”
“It’s The Tonight Show,” I said. And I’m not getting paid. And this isn’t going to air. And even if it does I’ll be reduced to a three second clip of me laughing, or just my boobs jiggling and giggling.
“You could take off your top,” he actually said to me. Isn’t it hilarious being a girl?
I tried to make small talk, to humanize the boobs. “It’s very awkward being here to make fun of something when everyone else here is actually here to do this. They paid money to be here.”
“It’s not hard for me,” he said, smiling. “Why don’t you take advantage? Meet some men?”
“I live with someone. And the other Undatables are married.”
“Oh. Well. Your loss.”
No, it really wasn’t. One kid was there, and I mean kid, couldn’t have been over fifteen, videotaping the entire event, like he was filming The Making of the Making of the Leno Segment That Will Probably Never Air. The rest of the people looked shell-shocked, terrified that the one night they actually got up the gumption to go out and try to date, Jay Leno picks as the night to make fun of singles looking for someone. Deer in headlights, re-evaluating every decision that led them to this bar on this night, staring at my chest and my “Luna Mae” nametag, worried that in fact, everyone was going to laugh at them.
“I’ll take your purse for you,” the producer said to me.
“Oh, it’s makeup,” I said. “I thought I’d powder my titties at one point.”
She smiled again. “No, I don’t think so. Don’t want to be too obvious,” she said, as she pulled my top down even more to pop my boobs out of my shirt.
“You have a lot of breasts to stare at tonight,” someone said to Guy.
“And I thank God for every last one of them.” That smile again.
The producer told Guy that I was very talented (I think that means “patient”) and to just let me do my thing. I must have babbled on camera for about five minutes, making up story after story. Since I’m sure none of it will air, I will tell you what I said. I started by hitting on him, then went on to talk about my dead daddy that was killed after he fell from a cliff that he was pushed off of once he escaped from the stolen car that sprung him from prison. I had three kids, the oldest was seven, and I didn’t have a job or a truck, but I was looking for someone who was. I went on about how nice living in the Big City is, how it’s true that nobody looks you in the eye, but everybody does look right into your heart (“Go, Big Boob Girl, Go!”), right into your soul, to see the Me inside of me, or rather the Mae inside of Luna Mae. Then I told him that everybody at speed dating were sharks that just wanted to use you for sex. He asked if I’d be willing to go home with him, and I said I would for $75, since I’ve got three kids to feed and who’s he kidding thinking I’d go to a lame place like that without getting paid.
And that was it. The crew and the producer told me I was very funny, we did another close-up of just my breasts as I repeated the bit about staring into my soul. I exchanged information with the Undatables, and we agreed that it was worth the experience just meeting each other. And yes, that’s pushing it, but they were really nice women and I’m glad I met them, but it would have been more dignified if we could have met at a Denny’s.
Yep, just another fabulous night in the glamorous world of Hollywood Comedy. Time to update my resume.