I stepped on to the elliptical at the health club, turned on my iTunes, and was about to slip on my headphones when I glanced at the television sets hanging on the front wall. A game show on the left, “The View” on the right, but in the middle–there they were. The damn Property Brothers. Those identical twins, Jonathan and Drew Scott, who buy and remodel homes on HGTV. Along with other HGTV show hosts Chip and Joanna who fix, Tarek and Christina who flip, and Hilary and David who love and list, their faces beam from the TVs in our home morning til night, and if Barb can’t sleep, overnight too. And when no one is remodeling, HGTV has its House Hunters, National and International, looking out for perfect properties. Reality redux.
The programs all have the same basic structure. Introduce a telegenic young pair, plus or minus a few kids, and have the hosts promise to solve some particular housing crisis the couple is facing. Start the project optimistically but run into a hidden obstacle or unexpected expense. Calm the worried homeowner/houseseeker then find an ingenious solution to the problem. Smiles and a champagne toast by the end of the hour. One formula, ten different TV shows!
Now it is OUR turn. I propose a 13 episode HGTV series chronicling The Raff Construction Project. Let’s name the show “Build It or Blow It”. Barb looks great on camera, I look OK on camera, and we can spruce up the general contractor and architect. We’ll use a local couple such as Eric and Cathy for hosts.
Yes, we started the actual project months ago and will have to “recreate” some of the earlier aspects for the camera, but I suspect most HGTV shows use a bit of play acting. We can “enrich” the past, too. All that time spent picking out windows? Let’s spice it up with a visit to a window factory, and toss in an on-screen table saw “incident”. Barb can use her hand therapy experience to perform an emergency thumb re-attachment. Gushing blood and sky-rocketing ratings!
Moving forward, I envision a curmudgeonly pipe smoking plumber with a Yankee accent (fire hazard), a wise-cracking all female painting crew (sexist), and a talented Old World carpenter (expensive). There will be tense scenes when we discover one-coat paint doesn’t cover in one coat and half-gallon toilets do half the job. Imagine the suspense when the village building inspector, tape measure in hand, checks to be sure the electrical outlet is at least the required minimum distance from the bathtub. With the right music on the sound track that one might be good to enough to keep viewers hanging as we go to commercial break.
Our big “do or die” moment in the penultimate episode? It has to be the Home Owners Association deciding our roof shingles are an unsuitable style for the neighborhood. Can we replace them and still stay on budget? Will this send us to the poor house? Don’t worry, it will all be resolved just in time for the grand finale.
So that’s the show. I just have one question. Anyone know anyone who knows anyone at HGTV? If you do, can you talk them into producing “Build It or Blow It”? If not, I’ll settle for one of the Property Brothers’ autographs!
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