Back in 2003, NBC came out with a reality dating show called "Average Joe." The theme of which is both obvious and unimportant for the purposes of this article.
Now, there was a contestant on that show who lied—artfully, but erroneously nonetheless—about his profession to everyone: to the producers, to the semi—hot blond chick he was “competing” for, and to the American television audience as a whole.
No surprise, pretty much everyone bought it.
I’m not gonna name him. Why? Because I’m a nice guy and I don’t want to hurt the kid’s Google—cred. Plus it’s not important, because people lie on reality shows all the time. The very ontology of the genre encourages lying, because it’s based on a false premise. Namely, that what you’re seeing is pure documentary when it is, in fact, part truth, part fiction, part BS.
Was Tila Tequila actually looking for love? Does Paris Hilton really need a new BFF?
Last week on NBC’s “I’m a Celebrity, Get Me Outta Here," Spencer Pratt, claimed to be a black belt in Brazilian Jiu—Jitsu. Pratt's life has been “chronicled” for more than three years now on the MTV reality show, The Hills. Needless to say, his claim raised eyebrows in the MMA community, in part because we all know how much time and dedication is required in earning a black belt.
I admit it: I’ve watched The Hills pretty regularly these last few years. I’ve watched Spencer in therapy, watched him eating, sleeping, clubbing, but have never seen him on the mat. Adding to the mystery, his “real—life” wife, Heidi Montag, who also “plays” his wife on the The Hills, claimed that he was a purple belt in Brazilian Jiu—Jitsu during an episode which aired about three months ago.
Now, there are three possibilities.
- Hedi was mistaken.
- Spencer Pratt is a Jiu—Jitsu phenom on the level of BJ Penn.
- Spencer Pratt practices the art of Midrash, taking a kernel of truth and spinning a story, like all good Talmudic scholars and reality stars are supposed to do!
Am I calling for an investigation into his belt status? No, because it doesn’t really matter. We are a culture of avatars and Sims characters, of screen names and cell phone contacts. Our very lives are often like Rock of Love episodes.
That said, I’m still curious: Does anyone know if Spencer is really a black belt?