I went to The Price is Right with some fraternity brothers. Low and behold I got called up on stage, won the short bid game, got to go up on stage, bullshit with Drew, play another game, and spin the wheel! It was the coolest thing ever!!! I also came home with a bunch of prizes! What questions do you have for me?

My Proof: Me and Drew Carey


When I won the Short Bid Game

My prizes

Comments: 82 • Responses: 32  • Date: 

agent_scully208413 karma

Is the Bonus Wheel heavy and/or difficult to spin? Are the beeps really loud in person?

colincush15 karma

Yeah the bonus wheel is huge. It always looks like the contestants struggle with it so I thought I'd try to be a macho man about it. I almost fell over while spinning it. No they are not overly loud.

DeafandMutePenguin13 karma

When you got home did you spay and neuter your pets?

colincush16 karma

Of course, it's a citizens duty

xThuganomicsx10 karma

Did you overbid anyone by a dollar and have them just glare at you?

colincush17 karma

No, although I kinda wanted to deep down. In one of the pictures you can see another contestant pissed at me because she was the next highest bidder

Skitzofreniks21 karma

And she's the asshole that overbid by a dollar on that other contestant. I'm glad you won the bid!

colincush11 karma


ilovethatsong2 karma

I'm always curious about this-- it's obviously an asshole move, but doesn't it make sense strategically? is there a general sense of decorum in the game where everyone tacitly should avoid this? genuinely curious.

colincush2 karma

Yes it totally makes sense strategically. Think about it this way, nobody knows anyone else and everyone wants a piece of the prizes. In my first short bid game (I lost the first, won the second), a lady bid $1 more than what I did right after me. I wanted to rip off her name tag and shove it down her throat, but at the same time, I couldn't blame her. I believe it's a pretty common move.

T-town044 karma

I saw the wheel of fortune stage recently and I was amazed at how small everything was, was that the case with the Price is Right stage? Also, how early did you have to get there to get tickets to the show?

colincush6 karma

Yes the stage is relatively small. It seems much bigger on TV. Surprisingly enough it was the audience seating that looks huge on TV but is actually super small. Somehow the cameras make it look way bigger on TV. Also there is scaffolding and cables and lights running everywhere over head which makes it feel a little more claustrophobic.

We got to CBS studio in Hollywood at about 8am and didn't actually get into to go studio until about 2pm.

TheRealSweetgravy4 karma

How do they decide who they pick to "come on down"?

colincush6 karma

They have this interview process where they line up 20 of you and the executive producer talks to each person for about 20 seconds. He asks what your name is and what you do. They generally look for sociable people. Me and the producer talked about snowboarding and something stood out to him

wildwildwest24 karma

When did you film vs. air date? Was Drew smaller in person than on TV?

colincush9 karma

It took 3 months from film to air, then another 3 months for me to get my prizes. Yes he is a litle short (I'm 6'2") but he's lost a TON of weight. And he as a soul patch.

wildwildwest23 karma

You looked tall plus I've always heard of the extra weight TV adds (and Drew looks great BTW). But 3 months to get your prizes? Reason for the delay? Taxes?

colincush8 karma

I believe it was to build up anticipation. Lots of people knew I won, but no one knew WHAT I won. They made me sign a contract promising that I wouldn't tell what my prizes were until the air date.

puhleez4204 karma

That has got to be some of the ugliest jewelry I have ever seen. What did you end up doing with it and what was the tax bill like?

colincush5 karma

Taxes came out third of the MSRP, so I'm in debt to my parents at the moment. Trying to sell it ASAP. No idea how to go about this. It's up for sale on eBay and Craigslist but I don't think anyone would want 5 pairs of the same earrings and a $2000 jewelry box from Craigslist. Should I sell everything individually?

Mackinstyle5 karma

This is the saddest part. When you see some people win stuff they simply can't afford to keep but don't yet realise it.

DoobiusPrime7 karma

This comment just ruined the price is right for me. Every time I see an excited winner from now on I will think, are these the cheers before the tears? Jeopardy ftw

colincush1 karma

I think the same tax rule still applies to Jeopardy though!

puhleez4201 karma

I have found (hubs has stereo equipment) people generally will not go for stuff in big lots of it. There may be an auction company that you can work with if the jewelry is worth a lot. Did they not give you an option to take the cash instead of prizes?

colincush3 karma

It was either take the prize or forfeit it immediately (some people can't afford the taxes on it. There was another college student that won the grand showcase, no idea how she could afford the $10k+ taxes on it)

I may have to start looking at an auction service.

TheCompleteReference1 karma

That stuff you won probably won't even be worth what the tax was if the tax was 30% of MSRP.

I hope you can get some of that tax back when you file your taxes at the end of the year. I assume your income bracket would reduce the tax to 10-15%, so you should get the rest back.

colincush1 karma

Unfortunately I don't think I got much of it back, since it was characterized in "Misc. Income"

So now I'm in the unfortunate situation where I'm in debt to my parents (who covered my taxes), while I have thousands of dollars of jewelry that I can't get rid of.

TheCompleteReference2 karma

You should talk to a tax person. MSRP is usually completely bullshit. That jewlery probably retails for less than half of MSRP.

You can always fix past returns. Just because the show claimed the jewelry was worth XXX doesn't make it true. If you paid taxes against a MSRP value of 10k, but the stuff is really only worth 3-4k retail, you need to find a way to fix that and get the taxes back. It is definitely worth looking into.

If that fails, see if any law exists that allow you to return the prizes. Or I guess resort to public shaming and hopefully the show will just take that crap back.

colincush1 karma

So should I have the jewelry accurately appraised to find the real retail value?

TheCompleteReference3 karma

I think you need to find someone who does taxes and ask if there are any options to override the MSRP value which most likely is extremely high compared to real market value.

And if you can refile to correct it. I imagine if the change is large, it will trigger an audit, so you need to make sure the change in valuation is definitely a legal option when filing taxes.

It is possible you can't base it on anything buy MSRP. You need to find out for sure. It is worth investigating due to the amount of money involved.

Edit: http://finance.zacks.com/much-state-federal-tax-owed-sweepstakes-winnings-6171.html

This article suggests they would have withheld 25% for taxes, so depending on income, you should have gotten something back already or had to pay more.

It also says there is no set way to value the prizes:

If your prize is a non-cash award such as a trip or a car, you will owe tax on the fair market value of the prize. There is no uniform method for determining fair market value. Neither the U.S. tax code nor U.S. Tax Court rulings have specified the proper way to set the fair market value of a non-cash prize. The sweepstakes or contest promoter will report what it considers to be fair market value. That figure may be different from the “approximate retail value” the sponsor cited in sweepstakes advertising. But the sponsor’s fair market value figure may be subject to dispute. For example, parties could dispute whether the fair market value of an automobile is the manufacturer’s suggested retail price or the discounted price the sweepstakes sponsor paid to buy the car.

That suggests you could have it appraised for what you actually could sell it for on the open market and use that valuation over the valuation used by the game show.

You may not even have to have it appraised, listings from stores selling the product could be enough. You could probably also try to get different valuations and choose the lowest for tax purposes.

colincush1 karma

This is great advice, thanks for taking the time to help me out

puhleez4201 karma

Man, that sucks. You may try getting in with a jewelry store or a jewelry consignment place too. They will take a percentage as would the company that does auctions, but may get more since they are geared toward jewelry. Good luck!

colincush2 karma

Thank you , this is helpful!

playhertwo4 karma

Do you look good wearing those earrings?

colincush8 karma

I didn't have pierced ears before getting the earrings but now I do.

[deleted]-12 karma


colincush20 karma

I was joking

coffeebirds3 karma

What was your favorite part of the show?

colincush21 karma

Another contestant actually ended up winning BIG. Like $35,000+ in prizes. Seeing that was pretty awesome. Even though it wasn't me, I was still super stoked to see such awesome stuff being won.

ben56473 karma

  1. What are your favorite TV Shows and movies?
  2. What was cool about Drew Carey?

colincush7 karma

TV: It's Always Sunny, Arrested Development, House of Cards, The League, and of course Cops. Movies: Anything Coen Bros of Tarantino.

During the "Commercial Breaks" where the crew would set up the next game, Drew Carey would essentially do a stand up roast of the contestants. It was like 2 shows in one. The audience loved it, gave the show a much more entertaining feel than just a recorded, rehearsed TV show. Also, both times I went (twice), he played a song about smoking weed.

And he had an awesome soul patch and pocket square.

Steampoweredidiot2 karma

Have you ever been surfing around channels on the TV, and seen yourself?

colincush4 karma

Haha no, although I hope to some day. My mom, however, recieved a couple phone calls of "I was watching TPIR and your son came on, you know he was on tv right?"

Also when the show aired, we had a big screening at the fraternity house, it was pretty cool.

Steampoweredidiot1 karma

Nice! Thanks for doing this AMA

colincush3 karma

No problem :) it's fun for me to share my awesome experience

_0_1_0_1_02 karma

What game did you play once you were on stage?

colincush5 karma

I got to play a game where a few I had to guess which item was the lowest price (fridge, speaker system, home gym). Then I got to spin the wheel which I was so close to winning.

gonzopanda2 karma

This is excellent--I love The Price is Right!

I guess what I've always wanted to know is what Drew and the models are like during the commercial breaks? Are they congenial with each other or do the models retreat off-stage until the next game while Drew entertains everyone? For that matter, what is George like, too?

colincush8 karma

It's a really great vibe during the commercial breaks. The models kinda do their own thing during the breaks but the interactions with Drew and the audience is phenomenal. It was essentially The Price is Right during filming and Who's Line is it Anyway during the breaks. He would mess with the audience, tell jokes, sing songs, roast audience members, tell stories etc.

Also the relationship between George and Drew during the breaks is fantastic. They would tell each other jokes, play songs for each other and crack each other up. It was pretty clear they enjoyed each other

JerkasaurousRexx2 karma

Do they try to stop people from googling the prices of the prizes? To me, all you need is that one friend in the audience to shout out the correct price and you go off of that.

colincush5 karma

Funny story actually. Last year on the drive to Hollywood, we watched episodes in the car. For some of the games, they do not change the products, and it just so happened that one of the games being played was one that we had watched earlier in the day with the same prizes. We knew that shit 100%

However they take your phones away from you before you get in the studio for this reason. Also there isn't much time to actually think about the value of the prizes, my mind kinda shut down and listened to what everyone was yelling at me.

DocWiggles1 karma

How were the taxes?

colincush4 karma

They came out to about a third of the value of the item

Z9J8A71 karma

Are you disappointed that you only got 5 upvotes in 3 hours?

colincush13 karma

Actually a little bit yeah

popisju1 karma

How does one get into one of these? Also how happy were you when you got up there?

colincush3 karma

Incredibly happy, it was a dream come true. We called ahead and they saved about 35 tickets for us. you can just show up at the CBS Studios gate and they let you watch the show!

sarahsuebob1 karma

What does Drew Carey smell like? He looks like he would smell really nice.

colincush3 karma

Sandalwood and New Car Scent

Pravana1 karma

I went when I was 14 (in 2005) back when Bob Barker was host. My brother has a neuromuscular disease with an average life expectancy of mid-late 20s, so they were nice enough to let my brother and I, along with my parents, attend a taping with VIP back stage passes. Because my brother and I were both underage, we had to sit in the back corner along the aisle (on the right side of screen.) We skipped the line outside where they were starting their interviews, and got ushered around the back way into the studio (possibly due to his wheelchair as well) so we missed out on that experience itself. We went to a filming in August and it aired in November. It's really quite a production. The studio is quite small, but they move the sets around very quickly while Bob Barker answered audience questions during commercial breaks. It was a very cool experience, and seeing your answers to these questions brings back the memories. I still have my name tag and VIP pass.

I just wanted to point out that it is such a memorable experience even just being in the audience. How long has it been since the episode has aired? The experience is something that will stuck with you for the rest of your life, and even though I went almost 10 years ago, people still ask me about it.

colincush2 karma

Very cool story! I love hearing about stuff like this.

Yes I agree, the production area is quite small and they move around set pieces and game set-ups like an organized traffic jam. They have been doing it for so long they really have it down.

It has been about 3 months since it aired. I got a write up in my college paper and have been recognized as "The Price is Right Guy" around campus.

I am certain that this is a story I will be telling for years to come. Two weeks after the taping I was still just in shock that I GOT TO COME ON DOWN TO THE PRICE IS RIGHT!!!

laralee161 karma

What goes on during the commercial breaks?

colincush1 karma

the production people run around setting up for the next games. Drew does whatever the hell he wants (it was pretty clear he had a lot of freedom as a celebrity host). Lots of jokes and funny songs and dancing in the audience by members

Ingens_Testibus-8 karma

Drew Carey -- awesome libertarian. Did you get an opportunity to discuss the finer points of constitutional theory and contemporary politics with him?

colincush15 karma

No, however he did tell us about how he used to drink a lot of beer and smoke a lot of weed in his fraternity in college. So that was something.