I know a woman who writes country music songs. Okay, I understand there are a lot of aspiring songwriters out there, but this woman is different. She is in her late sixties, and penned her first song when she was fifty-eight. While her friends were planning retirement, and writing their wills
—she was dreaming of heading to the Grand Ole Opry.
Anyway, this woman had an idea that got me thinking—and I believe this has success written all over it! I want to pitch it to FOX Television, because I believe this is their forte. Alas, I have no connections. Can anyone help?
Here is the idea—are you ready? Seniors Still Got It! Yes, a talent show for people age sixty and over! How great would that be? Think how big the baby boomer audience is. But, there are no more shows geared toward them since JAG, and Murder, She Wrote went off the air. Dancing with the Stars was an okay option, but after the Bristol Palin fiasco, a lot of the seniors have vowed to move on. The senior population rarely watches American Idol, unless it is to criticize haircuts, clothing, and tattoo choices of the contestants. So, what’s left? I want to give seniors a bona fide venue to showcase their talent.
I have already talked this idea over with my sixty-seven-year-old neighbor, Nona, who is the “Queen of Ballroom Dancing” in southeastern Pennsylvania. I am not exaggerating this title. She is an extraordinary teacher. Couples are booked months in advance to learn the cha-cha, Nona style.
Nona thinks many seniors would jump at the chance to perform. She says many baby boomers possess talents that have remained untapped. Plus, if the show were to throw in paid airfare, hotel fare, and food bills, this would be ultimate senior discount, and few seniors would let that bargain pass them by. Another Nona observation: seniors would tune in by the millions to support other seniors. The ratings for this show would skyrocket, making it an immediate success.
Seniors Still Got it! would operate the same way American Idol operates. There would be auditions just like American Idol—except that there would be benches for the wannabe contestants, so they don’t have to stand in line for fifteen hours, waiting to get a shot at the judges. Power wheelchairs and scooters would also be allowed. However, no one is allowed to run over any competition. I am strict on this: one vehicular mishap in line, and it’s bye-bye contest!
Seniors could pick their category. They could sing, or dance, or do stand up comedy. There could also be a category for songwriters. As the producer for this project, I would like to set down some ground rules:
1. There will only be senior judges. Having a Jonas brother or Miley Cyrus judging a seventy-year-old dancer would not work out well. I do not think the contestants would take “constructive” criticism from someone who thinks thirty is old.
2. There will be no health talk on the show. No one is allowed to complain about their arthritis, prostate problems, or osteoporosis. These are topics not to be covered. It’s an entertainment show. If you want to talk about these subjects, we can start a senior version of The View.
3. Exotic dancing is not a talent that can be judged on this show. Ladies, leave the poles at home. It’s not that I have anything against this type of entertainment, but let’s be practical. The television puts ten pounds on people, and I’m not sure where those ten pounds will go on exotic dancers—it might scare some viewers. Plus, as many older women insist on telling me: gravity is a bad thing.
4. This rule is out of the Miss America book: no contestants are allowed to engage in any kind of sexual relationship. Why? I have no logical explanation, except that I don’t want to know that people my parents’ age have sex.
5. Advertisers can include the millions of fifty-five and over communities that have sprung up across the American landscape. Potential advertisers may also include the makers of Viagra, other ED drugs, Depends, Blue Cross, Blue Shield, and of course, AARP.
6. There will be medical staff on duty at all times during this production—I don’t think I need to explain why.
7. Once a week, the contestants and staff will be bused to the nearest casino for some well deserved down time. They will all wear blazers and/or sashes, showing they are Seniors Still Got It! contestants.
8. There will be no rules blocking contestants from doing endorsements. Hell, if these people have the courage to perform in front of millions of people, they deserve the right to hawk any product they want. The money goes to them with my blessing.
9. The winner gets a truckload of money. I want the winner to never worry about a medical bill, a social security check, or a mortgage payment. I want the winner to live out his or her life in total luxury and peace of mind—and then maybe adopt me.
I realize that I am new to the whole producing thing, so these rules are open to discussion
—with the exception of the exotic dancing category, because I do want this to be a family show. So, that is my idea in a nutshell. FOX Television, if you are looking for a new show, I have your next hit. Feel free to email me, or leave a comment. I will get back to you.