Writing Practice, May 14 2015
Her office put her up to it. They even printed out the form. Fill it out, they said. It’ll be fun, they said. She never took a vacation. She didn’t even own a TV. Lana Really, executive and probably one day vice president, didn’t have a lot of good time time. She didn’t know anything about the game, but her colleagues filled her in. It’s great. Each round is unpredictable. You can’t prepare for it.
The prizes seemed strange. Lana could win cool stuff, for sure. There were trips to far away islands. There were makeovers and gadgets. Someone even won a monthly stipend for the rest of their life. She could quit!
“Why would I quit?” She asked. “I love my job.”
Well, maybe you’ll win something else.
So Lana did it. As with most of her endeavours, she crushed it. Blew past the qualifying rounds. Lana got on the show, and she broke records for time, distance, and three other things she didn’t think they kept score on. She mentioned the company by name three times, and they emailed her about giving her a raise just for all the free publicity. And then she won, and she was congratulated by hunky models and the audience and the host, this beautiful woman with a hairstyle she kind of wanted after seeing it up close (and gabbing about backstage).
But the grand prize was what people really tuned in for, because it was never the same thing twice. The producers chose prizes based on what they felt the accepted contestants would really want, more than anything in the world. They didn’t tell the contestants what the prizes might be beforehand.
The beautiful woman with the incredible hairstyle handed Lana Really an envelope. All she had to do was open it and read the card tucked inside. She could react however she wanted. She could take the prize, or leave it, but she had to say what she was going to do on the air.
She flipped open the card with her excellent fingernail. She was nervous, but the cameras couldn’t catch it. She read the card, and said it allowed, surprised and confounded, alarmed. Bewildered.
“I’ve won a family?”