After the boys dropped me off, I noticed there were far fewer people that day. I thought my chances were better. I filled out my application and sat to wait in the audience area.
**Some of the following events may not be in the order in which they are presented. The only thing I can completely remember is the beginning and the end. They are completely accurate.**
After a few minutes, a lady came and sat with me. She was there by herself too. Her name was Sherrie. She's the director of the Ascension Parish Chamber of Commerce in Gonzales. She was really friendly and up for a great time!
I met a friend on Saturday, too. Her name was Carla. That will be significant shortly.
--Close Side Bar--
We watched the show, hopeful. Again, I wasn't chosen. Sherrie wasn't sure she was going to stay, but I twisted her arm to go ahead and stay(it wasn't very hard to convince her). What else were we going to do on Sunday? House work? Nap? Laundry? Bah! That will always be there, but this was the last day for the Wheel.
We went to the bar and had a beer together and watched the Houston Texans game, then went back to put in our applications for the 2nd game at 3:30.
They called up more people who, obviously, didn't want to be there. I was beginning to wonder why they even came. There are perfectly wonderful people in the audience who want more than anything to play!!! Lo, and behold, my new friend Carla was called.
Earlier in the afternoon, I ran into Carla and introduced her to Sherrie. They began comparing notes and realized they had a bunch of the same friends, so they became fast friends. When Carla got up to talk to Marty, Sherrie and I were waving and cheering like crazy people. She was sufficiently cheerful and friendly and I think has a good chance for a call-back.
Five more names. Five more not mine. But then my friend Sherrie was called! I couldn't believe it. People all around me were getting called and even 2 people I had met that weekend were called.
When Sherrie got up to talk to Marty, I got on a chair and waved like a crazy person and took pictures of Sherrie. Marty AND Heidi noticed me waving and waved back. Sherrie gave me a shout-out. Sherrie was charming and wonderful. She got to talk about the far-flung, exotic locations her family were in at that particular moment. Sherrie was terrific and I know she'll get a call-back.
This next picture is of Sherrie waving to me, but I was waving back and so the pic is blurry! (Crazy excited!)
Five more names. Five more not mine.
We hung around for the third game. Sherrie decided to wait with me. She had a good feeling.
The last five names were called around 5:50. One, two, three, four, four, four, five, five, five, five (the repeat numbers indicate people who had left and they drew another name)........the crowd was going crazy now........Jana Ragsdale.
I screamed my head off!!!!!!!!!!! I was the LAST person called for the LAST game of the weekend. I ran up there and was hysterical. I was laughing and crying all at the same time. The staff there had to take my picture. I'm sure it was as good as my driver's licence. They directed me to sit in the waiting area, but realized I hadn't signed in. I stepped over to do that when another staff person had my application and asked my name. I literally could not speak. He looked at me and asked if I knew my name. I think he thought I might have ridden the short bus downtown that day. I just pointed to my name. He said that'll do. I sat down.
The game before mine finished up and my group went on stage. My friend, Sherrie, had my camera. When it was my turn to talk to Marty, I don't even remember how I got over to talk to him. I think I floated.
Marty: Hi. What's your name?
Me: Jana Ragsdale
Marty: And Jana, what do you do?
Me: (with attitude) Well, I am the storage diva for Zachary, Louisiana!
Marty: Storage Diva?
Me: Yea. I'm the manager of a self-storage facility in Zachary. Anybody from Zachary still in the house??!! (cheering erupts from the crowd. I don't think there were but a couple of people from Zachary, but it's fun to cheer on a crazy person)
Marty: Jana, what do you like to do when you're not the Storage Diva?
Me: Well, I have a husband and two boys, so I love watching little league baseball, going to friends' houses, and having friends over, hanging out in our back yard, swimming and cooking, and making new friends. I have to say hey to my new friends Carla and Sherrie who BOTH got to play today! And I just took up another hobby today.
Marty: Another hobby today? What's that? (baitingly)
Me: Dancing, of course!!
The crowd erupted, "Yeah" by Usher came on, and, yes, I danced on stage for the about 100 people remaining in the audience.
My puzzle was a before and after puzzle. We all got to give a letter. I said 'N'on my first try and 'M' (I think) on my second. The second lady in line solved the puzzle: SPELLING BEE STING.
We were dismissed and Marty thanked everyone for coming. Sherrie met me at the bottom of the steps.
I'm not sure if I'll get a call-back. When they review the tape, I'll probably be passed over as a little too much the crazy.
You know that, internet, you'll be one of the first to know.