Wednesday, March 31, 2010


We recently were invited to be audience members on the Wendy Williams Show. Wendy is a down-to-earth, smart and funny woman who has made a seamless transition from radio to television.

We were led into a VIP waiting section and as we walked through the main waiting room, we noticed everyone was camera ready and waited patiently. In the VIP room we could’ve helped ourselves to the doughnut holes and coffee but we were already hyped up.

Before show time there’s a warm up with driving music that’s makes it hard for you to sit still in your seat, in fact, many can’t. They make their way to the stage and dance as if they were in a club somewhere in the middle of the night, not nine o’clock in the morning.

The show’s staff, from security to coordinators to the producer was good natured and helpful. As harried as the seating person was, she directed us to our seats calmly and courteously. And even when the cameras weren’t rolling, Wendy kept on chatting and joking with the audience as the producer counted down 3, 2, 1, to going ‘live”.

We had a great time and it was even more exciting because we were “discovered” by Wendy. She spoke to us on camera when she noticed we were identical twins.

Here’s what we learned about how to be stellar studio participants:

Do look your best; you want to be ready for your close-up. (We left our respective apartments around 7:30am dressed to the nines.)

Do go to the restroom before entering the studio, it’ll be awhile before you get a second chance and only five are invited, don’t be shy.

Do not take the opportunity to present your goals and aspirations to Wendy if she chooses to ask you, “How you doin? ” which is her trademark phrase. (This isn’t THE RESUME SHOW!)

Do clap with enthusiasm; it looks better on TV than a bored, not-too-interested clap. Watch the producers—they will tell you when to sit or stand.

Don’t make faces or try to steal the show as one guest did as he began voguing when he realized he was on camera and Wendy was in the shot.

Don’t fumble with your jewelry or hair and better not pick your nose even if you think the cameras aren’t rolling. This is not how you want to embark on your 15 minutes of fame. Remember to show your pearly whites and expressions that demonstrate that you’re engaged with what Wendy or her guests are talking about. (Cameras are always panning the audience.)

Do plan to stay for the duration of the taping. After the live show is over, the star and her crew tape promos.

At the end of the show we realized that even though we had VIP tickets – everyone is treated like and feels like a VIP on Wendy’s show. Guess that’s what happens when folks mind their manners – behind the cameras, on the stage and in the audience.

Thursday, March 18, 2010


Yvonne asked me, “What did he look like?”
“He was well dressed, suit, tie, good looking guy, he looked like a business man.”

We were trying to make sense out of what I’d seen on the train that morning – a man clipping his nails. The sound of the clippers alone was driving me crazy. What he did next was even more disgusting. He let the clippings fall onto his lap. When he finished, he brushed them onto the floor and put his clippers away.”

I couldn’t help myself. I got up from my seat, walked over to him and said, “What you just did is incredibly rude.”

“That’s your opinion,” he answered coolly.

We covered grooming in public in a past post and left out nail clipping so we’re thankful for the dapper clipper for the reminder.

I wonder if he retold the story about someone telling him how rude he was to clip his nails in public and grace the train’s floor with his clippings. I can hear him now calling me everything but ‘lady’ or ‘woman’.

We don’t suggest going up to people with sharp objects in their hand and pointing out their poor manners. But I felt confident that I wasn’t going to end up on the evening news cycle as a stabbing victim thanks to that little file that's connected to the clipper.

Maybe nodding in disdain and changing seats is the better way to go when you see poor behavior. But that’s just our opinion.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


It doesn’t seem like most people are leaving jobs on their own volition these days but if you’re one of the two lucky people in today’s job market who actually found another job, careful how you leave.

No need to gloat, especially if you know that most of your soon to be former colleagues are miserable. Telling them that their turn is coming up may not be the best thing to say to them because you don’t know what that turn will be. Instead, thank them graciously for wishing you well and point out that they as well as you are fortunate to have steady work.

The temptation to start slacking off is tremendous – strolling in late morning, taking an extra two hours for lunch and leaving early – wait to do this in between the old and new job. While you didn’t need the present employer for a reference, you may be calling on him/her in the future. You wouldn’t want them to remember your lame ducking days or the shopping spree you went on in the supply closet.

Handwritten notes to people you like and including your boss (even if you didn’t like him/her) go a long way. It shows people that you cared enough to take the time to say something kind to them with a personal touch. Avoid those sappy mass emails that go on and on. They can seem self -serving especially if you think big brother is watching and you want him to know how gracious you can be even if you’re deliriously happy to be leaving.

To some, exit interviews are a waste of time. But you can turn yours around to be positive and a help to the co-workers you’re leaving behind. Don’t turn it into a bitterfest or a lecture on how the company could be better.

To those of you caught up in the sea of layoffs, a huge job awaits you. We suggest that you mind your manners like never before and introduce yourself to grace.