Well, you heard from Pam. Now, it’s Chris’ turn.
Who are Chris and Pam? Well, they are one of the six couples featured on the new TVLand series, First Love, Second Chance (Wednesdays, 10 p.m. Eastern/Pacific) who reunite after years apart to see if love is better the second time around.
The Ride: How frightened were you that your first love would not only not look the same as when you last saw her, but would look far worse than you could ever have imagined?
Chris: I was a little nervous about that, but I had seen a recent picture and she looked the same to me. Although pictures can be deceiving. It was a great relief that she looked good when we met.
The Ride: What if the latter was true – looked far worse than you ever imagined – what would you have done?
Chris: I would have been polite and respectful, but physical attraction is important to me. If it’s not there, than the rest doesn’t follow. We still would have had a great time catching up with each other and probably would have left it as friends.
The Ride: And did you focus on keeping in shape, looking your best, just in case you ran into that first love?
Chris: I exercise the way I do for me only, the way I feel after a great effort, pushing myself past limits. I’m trying to discover what I am capable of. Looking fit is simply a by product of that, but it is nice that people notice…
The Ride: How did you find out about the show?
Chris: The casting director is an old friend of mine and asked me if I knew anyone that might be good for the concept. Pam had just found me on FB so I threw our names in the hat.
The Ride: What was the selection process like? I would think the casting people/producers would want to make sure that no one had any stalker tendencies.
Chris: They were behind schedule casting the show so when they decided on us we were put through an accelerated screening process. It was difficult to schedule all the things they needed and work and train. I wasn’t worried about anything negative though.
The Ride: You are pretty vulnerable on the show. Why were you so willing to let a national television audience see that vulnerability?
Chris: I was just being me. A lot of my personality and sense of humor didn’t make it to the final cut, which was a little disappointing. I was cracking up Pam and the crew everyday. Shooting a show like this is hilarious and since I’d never done anything like it before I didn’t know how to act. When I was nervous or uncomfortable, I would start joking around. I understand why they edited the show the way they did though, and I think it turned out good. I remember I just wanted to make a good show and not look like a complete idiot.
The Ride: Your friends have a lot to say when they met your first love for the first time. What did they have to say when you told them you were going to be on the show?
Chris: Knowing me they weren’t surprised. None of them had heard of Pam, she was part of another life for me. They were all like “Pam who?”. Meeting her under these circumstances was weird for everybody.
The Ride: What did your family have to say?
Chris: They thought I was crazy. Most reality shows make everyone look like stupid, shallow, jackasses. They cautioned me against doing it because they didn’t want me to embarrass myself.
The Ride: So do you believe in love at first sight?
Chris: I believe in lust at first sight, but love? I just don’t know anymore. I’m old now. At my age, finding someone that you’re attracted to, compatible with, makes you laugh, that isn’t completely damaged goods, is a difficult thing to come by. It’s so much harder now to find someone that I can stand, and more important, can stand my neurotic ass.
The Ride: Did you believe in love at first sight before you met your first love?
Chris: I can’t remember what I believed in back then. I remember Pam was hot and we got along great, and it was hard to say goodbye.
The Ride: “Hopeless romantic” or “Cautious Cynic”?
Chris: I think it’s better to be a little bit of both. I want to believe the dream, but I don’t want to fall to pieces if things don’t work out.
The Ride: What do you hope people get from watching the show?
Chris: I think a lot of people share the feelings that Pam and I had at the beginning of the show. I hope that people will be motivated to reach out to those people that touched them in the past, even if it’s just to say hi and catch up. It feels great to be able to do a simple thing like that, and if more happens, even better. If you don’t make the first step, then you are left to wonder…