Thursday, December 9, 2010


I knew it was too good to be true.

When I was in New York in May, my friends Dan, Casey, Kristin and I needed to catch a cab to meet up with the rest of our friends for dinner. Dan stepped off the curb to flag one down and Casey said, "I only want to ride in one that looks like it might be the Cash Cab."

We all had a good laugh because we knew that the chances of us actually finding the Cash Cab in that city were slim to none. But we all liked the idea that we at least had a chance. But as it turns out, we didn't even have that.

Thanks to The Onion A.V. Club and various other Internet sites, I've learned the tragic news that I always feared to be the truth but never wanted to believe—Ben Bailey is a liar and his Cash Cab is totally fake.

Take a minute to let that sink in before you hear the gruesome details.

There is a producer that goes around and finds improv comedy type people or perhaps a charismatic individual that's a little drunk to be asked to participate. And if that doesn't work, they find people that did well on other game shows and cast them in the role of the lucky contestant. They ask these people to take part in a reality show, and if they agree, the producers tell them they're sending a cab to take them where they need to go and when they get in, Ben Bailey hits the lights and the Cash Cab starts up.

Oh, and if you win, Bailey gives you a fake wad of cash that you return after the cameras have been turned off and they mail you a check a few weeks later.

I'd always been curious about this because I know producers need to get you to sign a piece of paper to be on camera, but I'd always hoped that they were presented with that document right after they got in. I knew there was something fishy about it, but I wanted to believe so badly that I might be wandering the streets of NYC on my next visit, hail a cab and become an instant game show contestant. Now they've taken that all away from me.

Look, I know it's naive of me to think that there is actually a cab driving around New York City with a bag full of cash that they're going to give away to random people on the street. That's just dangerous. But I wanted to at least believe there wasn't a fucking casting director for the show.

Next thing you're going to tell me is that the Mythbusters aren't actually scientists.

What? That's not true either?

I hate you television.

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