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Tuesday, September 6, 2005 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

TV Addict

A "Survivor," "Apprentice" walk into a bar ...

Seattle Times staff reporter

I was having drinks with Alex Thomason from "The Apprentice" at Joeys on Lake Union the other night when a girl approached our table.

"I'm so sorry to interrupt," she said, "but I recognized you from 'The Apprentice' and I had to come over and introduce myself. My name is Brianna ... "

I looked at her. "Hey," I said. "You're that girl who's gonna be on 'Survivor.' "

Indeed. It was Brianna Varela from "Survivor: Guatemala," the 21-year-old from Edmonds who loves makeup and Britney Spears and hot pink and turquoise together.

She turned to me. "I never said my favorite actress was Britney Spears."

OK, but that's what the CBS Web site said. (For the record: It's Uma Thurman. Britney is her favorite performer.)

It was Brianna's first day on the job as a waitress at Joeys. I grabbed a cocktail napkin and borrowed her pen. She seemed anxious to get back to her tables. We wasted precious moments discussing how not cute Britney Spears is when she's pregnant: "She looks like Courtney Love."

Enough small talk. Was Guatemala fun?

"I think 'fun' is one of the last things I'd call it," she said. "I was getting bitten and starving myself."

She started going on about how she appreciates everything more now, like friends and family and ice cubes. She showed me the bug bites on her tanned, skinny little arms.

"Are you good at camping?" I asked.

"I can go camping if there's, like, a motor home," she said. "I wore pink shorts out there, OK? But that doesn't mean I can't go out and give it my all if I have to."

Right. I could go camping in a motor home, too. If I really wanted to, which I don't.

Brianna looked tiny in person, which made me think she might have stayed in the game for a while because we all know "Survivor" is the best diet ever. To be honest, if she wasn't such a sweetheart I'd probably have to hate her because she's super cute and she's about to be famous.

In related news, rumors are flying that fan favorites Bobby "I Look Like Jesus Christ" Jon and Stephenie from "Survivor: Palau" will return for the new season, either as castaways or ... cave people, I don't know. We'll see what happens when the 11th edition of the hit series premieres at 8 p.m. Sept. 15 on KIRO.

Meantime, in Austin, Texas, a horde of zombies reportedly tried to crash the local "American Idol" auditions. I am not making this up. "Braaaaaains!" the zombies said. "Television rots your braaaaaains!"

Producers wound up serving them with release forms to appear on the show. The zombies signed.

Speaking of television that rots your brain:

"The Real World"

Rachel storms out of the kitchen in a drunken rage, then returns to yell at Nehemiah and eat a fajita. "I'm not going to lose my fajita over a [expletive] coward. OK? I'm gonna eat my [expletive] fajita. ... You know what? That's it. I don't want to talk to you the rest of the time I live here." I get irritable when I'm hungry, too. (10 p.m. Tuesdays, MTV)


Tara Reid visits Aphrodite's Rock in Cyprus. Legend has it if you swim around it three times, you'll have eternal youth, beauty and love. "This is cool because I will be the ... what do you call it? The, when you — the tester. When you're like, you try it. The gerbil? Not gerbil ... what is it called? The guinea pig. Yeah, I'll be the guinea pig on all the fun beauty things ... and of God and stuff." In related news, Tara makes a reference to being on the "Alcohol Diet." (10 p.m. Wednesdays, E!)

"Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County"

Stephen returns to Laguna for Valentine's Day. He takes Kristin out to dinner, then surprises LC with chocolate and flowers the next day. My, is it last year already? (10 p.m. Mondays, MTV)

"Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List"

Kathy on being an early riser: "When I'm up early in the morning, which I do as little as possible, one of the things I think that's good about getting up really early — it's not jogging or greeting the day, it's that that's when they make doughnuts. ... My doughnut ceiling is too high, so the way I know when to stop and how to stop is when I puke." The first step is admitting you have a problem. (10 p.m. Wednesdays, Bravo)

"Tommy Lee Goes To College"

Tommy starts a fraternity: The House of LEE. He interviews a potential pledge: What are you looking for in a frat? "Eat some food and hang out." Nice! You're in. And they shall call you "Brother Big Boned." (9 p.m. Tuesdays, KING)

Pamela Sitt: 206-464-2376 or

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