I audition for QVC.

Humiliating myself for fun and profit.
Feb. 15 2005 2:01 PM

QVC, Here I Come!

Can I get my brilliant new product—Hairmuffs—on home shopping television?

(Continued from Page 2)

And then I was in. A young woman, Lauren, gave me a minute to set up on one of about 20 folding tables around the room. As I put on the Hairmuffs, the jewelry lady next to me spontaneously said, "I like that!" Lauren was more skeptical. "What's your wow factor?" she asked.

I felt like George W. Bush at the first presidential debate. Finally I said, "You will be warm and stylish. Your kids will want to wear your Hairmuffs. No one else will have them."

"You're not selling these anywhere else?" she asked.

I promised her no. I also promised I could manufacture them myself in this country. Then she asked what my wholesale price was. When I told her $17, she shook her head.

"That's really expensive," she said. To make her see the value, I took off the Hairmuffs and put on the NoHairmuffs. "This comes with it and it's for men and women with short hair. It makes a bold statement." Lauren's eyes widened but she didn't speak. The roving QVC cameraman swung around and called out, "I want a shot of this."

Then Lauren shook my hand and dismissed me, telling me everyone would hear by e-mail on March 15. I hung around and talked to some other hopefuls—a couple with a line of plum sauce, a woman with a book about her visitation by angels—and all had experiences as discouraging as mine.

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As I walked to the Metro, I saw the incontinence-spray guys who'd been ahead of me. I called out to them. They were flying—either things had gone really well or they were experiencing the effects of using their product as breath freshener.

"Hey, you were in and out of there like a shot," said Mr. Limburger. He said they spent a full 15 minutes demonstrating their product. They even met a QVC publicity person. Someone from QVC gave them a phone number and asked them to call in two weeks.

Well, even if I wasn't going to host QVC's Hairmuffs hour, I was going to show my belief in making a bold statement. I put on NoHairmuffs and rode the rush hour Metro to my daughter's school. Though the car was filling with commuters, no one tried to sit next to me. But at school I walked past my daughter's classmates without getting a reaction. She later explained, "Mom, it's odd, but all my classmates are used to you, so they didn't notice your special feature. You're out there Mom, but I like that about you."

It was so sweet I wanted to cry. At that moment I didn't have the heart to tell her that soon enough she would be making Mr. Limburger and Mr. Smoke rich, ordering their product from QVC so she could spray me daily.

Is there something you've always wanted to do but were too scared or embarrassed to try? Ask the Human Guinea Pig to do it for you. E-mail me your ideas at humanguinea@hotmail.com.

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