Folks in the crowd were most interested in the people from the show. This woman is one of the designers. She said that she had been on the show about a year. She signed an autograph for a young girl and then held a baby while people took her picture. She has a British accent. She encouraged the crowd to come back tomorrow to watch the progress on the house. I wonder why she would want people to come back tomorrow. I don't think spectators have much to do with interior design.
Most of the time people were yelling, "Michael!" and "Ty!" The former is a designer and the latter is the host of the show. He grabbed some large pieces of wood from the debris during the demolition process. He would carry it out of the way, his tanned biceps bulging as the crowd screamed. I guess something will be made from the wood. Or maybe that was just his workout. Or something to make him look busy for the cameras.
The crowd mirrored the performance in front of us: they were filming, we were filming. Everyone had cameras and cell phones. Everyone tried for good shots. Some people became experts, filling the rest of us in on what was happening. I guess you could call this participatory media.
Everyone was participating in a selling advertisements--and most of us were doing it for free. No wonder the people on camera can be paid so well. Hardly anyone else is paid at all.
Some people had nicknames for the on-camera people. "Ty-ty" and "monkey butt.." The intimacy and familiarity made me extremely uncomfortable. Was the feeling shame? Why and for what? Was it the confrontation with their enjoyment, their open display of an attachment that to me seemed extreme, inappropriate across televisual distance?