FLINT - The news said Kim Kardashian and her family made $65 million this year from their reality show, "Keeping Up with the Kardashians," in which the Kardashians talk and bicker, mostly bicker.
Heck, my family can do that. And my family could definitely use $65 million.
So welcome to "Hanging with the Hellers," a thrill a minute reality TV show in which cameras follow around an ordinary suburban family while they do ordinary suburban family stuff.
By Andy Heller
"Hey, has anyone seen my shoe?"
That's Annie, the 14-year-old. She never knows where her shoes or socks are because she brought a puppy named Tonka into the house last year who views himself as the Minister of Footware Redistribution. The second you take off your shoes at the door, he takes one and moves it somewhere, usually directly into the path of the unsuspecting father figure in the home.
"Hey, will somebody go get the aaaagh!"
That's the father figure, who tends not to watch where he's going. As you can see, he has tripped over the shoe and fallen. Let's listen in.
"Oh, jeezus H. my ankle! I think it's a compound fracture. Somebody call 911 and (thud!)"
Whoops. Looks like he's passed out from the pain. Isn't that adorable?
(Insert laugh track here.)
It's later the same weekend and the phone is ringing. The father figure is elbow deep in the upstairs toilet, which has malfunctioned for the 100th time. Let's listen in.
"Can somebody get that?"
"Hey, can someone get that, I'm elbow deep in the toilet."
"Oh, for the love of WILL SOMEBODY PLEASE GET THAT?"
As you can see, the father figure has now extracted himself from the toilet and is running downstairs to answer the phone before the answering machine kicks in. Let's watch.
"Oh, jeezus H. is anybody going to aaaagh!"
Ooo, and down goes the father figure. It seems he's tripped over another shoe left in the middle of the floor.
"Jeez, dad, you should look where you're going."
That's Sam, the 17-year-old, who is not into awareness. The father figure seems to be scolding him. Let's listen in.
"Why didn't you answer the phone?"
"Did it ring?"
"What do you mean did it ring? You were sitting two feet from it! Didn't you hear it?"
"No. And, dude, you seem real stressed out today. You should relax a little. Hey, can you drive me to Nick's? Oh, and I need $200 for school tomorrow or I don't get to go on the trip."
(Insert laugh track here.)
And finally it's Saturday and, as you can see, the house is an unholy mess. Clothes are everywhere, newspapers are everywhere, furballs are rolling like tumbleweeds across the family room. The father figure looks perturbed. Let's listen in:
"Hey, guys, it's time for chores."
Child No. 1: Zoooom! slam!
Child No. 2: Zoooom slam!
Child No. 3: Zoooom slam!
"Hello kids? Anyone? Where the heck did everybody go?"
Hey, it's not exactly "must-watch TV," but then is it any worse than the Kardashians?
EDITOR'S NOTE - Andy Heller, an award-winning columnist for The Flint Journal, appears weekly in the Daily Press. He graduated from Escanaba Area High School in 1979. For more of his work, visit his blog at blog.mlive.com/flintjournal/aheller. You can e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.