As suspected, myself and course facilitator Bill Hughes are fast on track to becoming Best Friends Forever. He isn’t entirely aware of this, of course, and despite the fact that he shares the exact same information with everybody else in the class, I’m taking it that he has seen some sort of special talent in me that no one else has noticed for the last 36 years, and he is directing all of his tidbits of information to me and me alone.


For example, here’s what I now know about Bill:


  1. 1.    He has a sore leg.
  2. 2.    His TV production company won an IFTA last year – BOOM!
  3. 3.    He thinks I’m hysterical (at least, that’s how it went in my head when I told the class that I am extremely pro-ginger, but more on this later).



Week Two of the TV Presenting Course at the Gaiety School of Acting was as brilliant as hoped. Our assignment from Week 1 was to prepare a piece of script to camera, and I have to say, the talent in the class is pretty amazeballs. I was fully convinced that I wasn’t going to be as nervous as last week right up to the second when Bill called my name to take my turn, and then it all went a little fuzzy. The immediate effect of nerves upon hearing your name being called is so bizarre. You’re completely calm one moment and the next, your windpipe practically closes over and you have no sensation on your tongue. It’s as if a miniature Nerves Warrior sits under your seat, just waiting to attack you at the worst time possible. Someone calls ‘Sharyn Hayden!’ and PFFFTTT – the little (semi naked in my mind) Nerves Warrior instantly spits a dart of nerve poison onto the back of your knee, and the next thing you know, you look like you’re dying for the toilet in front of a roomful of strangers.


In fact, I did get through it in the end, and (my best friend) Bill coerced, praised and supported me throughout, as he did with everyone else. We then had to take some time to think about the type of show that we’d like to present, which is a particularly good idea for someone like me who has a long and muddled history of career and study choices (see last week’s blog).  Given my indecisiveness, I could have been in danger of rocking up to a production company, introducing myself as a would-be presenter and then staring blankly at the directors when they ask;

‘Of what?’

‘Hmmm??’ I would respond, obviously in complete panic, Nerves Warrior dart in place in side of neck, tongue lolling aimlessly around mouth.

‘What would you like to present?’

‘Oh you know, something with fashion, home improvements, kids drama and like an Playgirls of Fatima Mansion type show too maybe, could be hilarious….???’


*Interview Ends. Chances at becoming a TV Presenter finito. FOREVER.*


Chelsea Handler's Little Nugget

                                                 Chelsea Handler’s Little Nugget

Being forced to think of only one or two show types, and hearing examples of past students who played on their strengths and primary interests when developing a show that they would like to pursue, was a great idea. Shauna (my other BFF, she sits beside me every week and shares my stationary) already had Julianna Rancik’s job on the E! Network as her number one dream, so that was out for me, but I soldiered on. I pitched the idea of an Irish Chelsea Handler style show, late night and irreverent, where I could freely swear without any guff from the pre-watershed people. It turns out that a lot of the class were big Chelsea Handler fans, with a few offers to be my Chuy (Chelsea’s sidekick). It was at this point I mentioned that my side kick would have to be ginger, since I was going to spearhead a new pro-ginger campaign and Bring the Ginge Back….

…yes, really I did. I even pointed at the only red-headed guy in the room, John, when I said it. And then of course didn’t want to come off as a gingerphobe so had to panic-explain to everyone at high speed that I am personally a former ginger and that’s why I’m allowed to say that.


And then I sat down. Finally. Who knows if I’ll be allowed back next week. Maybe Bill will call me and let me know.  Or he could pop by the house, whichever suits.