I'm standing in line with 200 other people on Fairfax Avenue in Los Angeles. It’s 6 a.m. and still dark. This is a vacation?
Yeah. Because we’re not waiting for nothing. We’re waiting to become stars. We’re outside CBS Television City, hoping to be chosen for The Price Is Right, the longest-running game show (37 years) on TV.
Television fame is not all this 1950s-sleek yet homey part of L.A.―Wilshire Boulevard between Fairfax and La Brea Avenue, dubbed the Miracle Mile―offers. There’s good food, both pricey and inexpensive; good shopping; world-class art. All that, and the chance to hear the magic words― “Come on down!”―that will let you join Drew Carey on the Price Is Right stage.
The night before
“Be fun!” Ted Ott tells the 20 of us grouped on the sofas in the Farmer’s Daughter lobby. “Be funny!” Ott works nights at the Farmer’s Daughter hotel, a good base for your visit because of (A) its gingham-goes-chic decor, (B) its location across the street from CBS Television City, and (C) Ted Ott, who teaches hourlong evening classes for hotel guests on how to be chosen for The Price Is Right. “Dress like Next-Door Joe,” Ott says. “Nothing fancy.” I can do that! But as the Price schedule works out, I must wait a whole day before my chance.
Next: What to do on the big day