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Pragmatic Osmosis
By Tania Katan

"And breathe." Wai Lana says as she arches back, almost touching the soothing waterfall flowing behind her.

"I fucking love that woman," my father proclaims as he sips from his 39-cent cup of coffee and lifts a dense, beige buttermilk bar to his mouth, "I love yoga."

I have to admit that watching Wai Lana, dressed in traditional Hawaiian garb, bending and stretching in front of Mt. Fuji or Niagara Falls is a great way to start the morning. Wai Lana is the Bob Ross of the television-yoga world -- always calm and leading you to believe that the Inverted Action Posture is achievable before nine a.m.

"Why don't you do Yoga with me, Tania?" my dad asks in his gruff New York accent.

"Dad, you're not doing yoga, you're drinking coffee and eating a doughnut."

"I'm doin' yoga, by osmosis," Dad says, proud of himself.

Throughout my life my family has mastered the art of Osmosis. We took the idea of sleeping with a book under our pillows in order to absorb information, a little too seriously. See, it's not that my family's lazy, it's just that if given the choice of: a. working hard or b. not, we pick b. not. Why do yoga when you can watch it? Why pay your bills when you can pray that they go away? Why write a spec-script when you can stare at your computer?

Somehow I thought that by quitting my day job, moving to LA and proclaiming that I was, in fact, a Writer, I would automatically get an agent, a six-figure deal and the life of celebrity and glamour I could become accustomed to, if given the opportunity. I tried to explain my vision to the company that holds my car loan, but they had difficulty sharing my vision. "No, see I'll pay off the loan, in full, but you've got to give me some time to get famous. Yes, I'm serious. I live in LA I'm a writer. I'm gonna make it. Yes, 562 area code is in Long Beach, but I'm just biding my time at my father's apartment until I make it big. What? I'm 30 years old. What's so funny?"

As the calls from loan and credit card companies became more frequent and intimidating I had two choices: 1. To finish my Will and Grace spec script, which I've been working on since I got here seven months ago -- I only have about 30 more pages to go; then get an agent, who gets me a job working on a sit-com, before the end of this month. Or, 2. Follow in the footsteps of my family and find an easy way out.

The ad read, "Monster Car Makeover! We're putting the Real in Reality!" It went on to say that I could qualify to win lots of money and a new car if I had a lot of energy and a good smile. Those were my only assets. I was perfect for Monster Car Makeover. I mean that's what LA is all about, right? Taking your talents and turning them into an opportunity. I quickly called the number under the ad.

"Hi! I'm calling about Monster Car Makeover!" I said giving them a preview of all the energy to come.

"Great, you sound like you have a lot of energy." The voice on the other end said.

"I do. My name is Tania Katan. I'm an aspiring sit-com writer who just moved to LA."

"Oh, that's why you have a lot energy." I could tell that she liked me already. "I'm Ann. So, you wanna be on the show? Okay, have you seen our show, Extreme Resistance?"


"Okay, how about Maximum Employment?"

"No, actually I don't watch a lot of TV."

"A sit-com writer who doesn't watch TV?"

"I figure I watched enough TV as a kid to really understand the genre."

"Okay, I'm gonna ask you a few questions to see if you qualify to audition: Do you own a car?"


"How would you feel about working in a garage with sexist, sewer mouthed mechanics?"

"I'd fucking love it, I'm a nasty whore myself." I was getting into character.

"Great, one final question: Do you have a brother who would be willing to be your teammate?"

"Well I, I…"

"Because if you have a brother as your teammate, it'll really increase your chances of getting on the show."

"I have a twin brother."

"Amazing. That's what we're looking for. I need you guys to send me two videotapes by 11 a.m. on Wednesday, all right? Great now let me explain the concept of the show."

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