Being on TV: It's Essentially "You Ain't Sh**, Rarely in LessThan 500 Words"


Since The Show began, I’ve done a running weekly commentary on Facebook about my experiences being… more recognized. It’s a series of status updates unofficially called, “Demetria’s on TV and Things Are Getting Interesting.” We’ve covered the many ups and many, many downs of this new terrain that few people talk about, because if they did, I actually would have fully known what I was getting into.

Anyway, something happened yesterday to a friend that made me think this update was worth talking about.

My friend, a popular journalist and author, was called a "coon" on social media Monday. She did a FB update about it and quipped that she'd made it big. I joked something like, "Wait till you get the C-B-C combo. You're practically A-List."

Later, after I read several other comments on her thread expressing anger and outrage that she was insulted this way, I realized how f***ed up I’ve become about social media responses.

C-B-C= cunt, bitch, coon. It is not normal to be called these names (or certain others that are quite derogatory). And yet, I can't count a day since Jan. 5 when The Show debuted where I have not been called at least one of them (and a whole lot more). And each Sunday to Tuesday-- 72 hours-- after The Show aired, I (and my castmates) am bombarded with an endless tirade of all three throughout the day on Twitter, IG, my blog comments, email and occasionally FB mail.


I was warned by other female reality TV personalities and celebs that this would happen, even by the so-called "likable" ones. Everyone made the same analogies “They talked about Jesus” or reminded me that Michelle Obama has an extremely high approval rating, and she gets it too. It's part of what comes with being a woman in the pubic eye. But even the warnings don't prepare you for the waves of hate. It's like the sea rising up to wipe out NYC in one of those end of the world movies and you are the Statue of Liberty getting wiped out over and over and over… and over. It’s singlehandedly the worst part of being on TV. (Or being a blogger. It always happened, it's just a higher volume/ frequency now.)

I'm learning to deal with the volume, apparently. (It used to alternately cause insomnia and nightmares). Hence, why I am was completely desensitized to hear of someone else called a "coon", which if it's your first time, is incredibly upsetting. I was in tears the first time I was called a "hood rat" in the comments section of a friend's blog after the BSH trailer aired. (Funny, I've since transformed into a snobby/elitist/entitled, cunt/bitch/coon, but whatever).

I tell you all that to make this point. I've gotten with rare exception, used to all of this. Occasionally, I save the really good hate mail (like the one above) to whip out for cocktail and appetizer fodder with friends, like, “OMG! You will never believe this one!” I think of it as the equivalent of an ER doctor horrifying her friends with stories of what wild thing happened on the overnight shift. Everyone listening—unless they are also on TV—  is shocked, and weirdly intrigued at the depths and density of the amount of unadulterated crazy in the world.

TV (or blogger) people laugh and we play a game of one-upping each other. Someone not on TV (or blogging) always comments, “what kind of person watches a TV show, then goes online to tell the person that they hate them Like who does that?” Then someone else not on TV (or blogging) comments, “people have too much time.” And then, someone—maybe someone on TV (or who blogs) who is fed up that day or a person who just can’t believe this mess— screeches incredulously, “what is wrong with people?!”  and has to be calmed down. Some sensible soul reminds me to focus on the positive and keep my head up, which actually is now easy and actually done. Go figure.

But mostly, I (or someone) just block the person or delete the message from my mentions/responses/comments and move on with life. (And I’m sure that has something to do with why it doesn’t bother me as much.)

What fascinates me is the people who get pissed about this. Like you ranted in my comments telling me I was, [insert negative adjective] [choose either “bitch” or “cunt”] and you're surprised I didn't let that sit on my site/platform/social media? Like when it happens to you—and it must if you think it’s acceptable to talk to people that way—you don’t delete it? Really?

Some folks get so upset that they'll create a new IG, or post from a friend's account. And be totally upfront about it. Like, "you blocked me, [insert adjective] [now choose either “cunt” or “bitch”], but I'm back!!!! hahahahaha" Or they'll go from posting on one of my Instagram accounts to the other using the same screen name. Or from Twitter to Instagram repeating the same message. Or from Twitter to my blog to leave a nasty comment or write a longwinded email essentially telling me "you ain't shit, [insert “cunt” or “bitch”] in 500 words or more (never less). And they will add a line like, “now block this [choose either “bitch” or “cunt”]”.

It's like a weird sense of entitlement to not just be mean, but to allow the mean to stand for all eternity.  Like how dare you not allow me to be cruel to you and for everyone to see the depths of my hatred?  How dare you actually do something about it!!!! How dare you not respond to or acknowledge me!!!!! How dare you erase my evil thoughts!!!!! I imagine this, on a loop, is about what goes through The Brain's, well brain, or maybe The Joker’s.

Whatever it is, it’s a new part of life that I’m stuck with until I fade to black. There’s a lot of bad that comes with the good.


BSH: The Horror in the Hamptons

Screen Shot 2014-01-27 at 6.40.45 AMSince Dec. 5 when the premier party of “Blood Sweat & Heels” took place, I’ve been on a never-ending press tour to promote the show.  I’ve adhered to the company line about “BSH” being different than “other”—insert shade here— reality shows. In so many multi-syllabic words, my castmates and I have set out in the press to distinguish ourselves in the reality landscape. But the obvious truth, as viewers witnessed, is that some of the cast’s behavior is completely lacking in common sense, couth and any conception of class. Saying, “Oh, we’re so different” just makes for better spin on press junkets.

Admittedly, BSH makes for great television.  (I’m biased.) I’d like to think I would watch, even if I was not on the show. But what happened in tonight’s episode in the Hamptons it is not what I signed on for.

The Hamptons incident was shameful. There was so much more promise for what could have been shown from that excursion. Brie’s parents home is located in an historical African-American enclave of Sag Harbor. Too often, when we see images of Black success, it’s of entertainers and athletes. The inhabitants of Sag Harbor are Black folk with wealth earned through education and entrepreneurship. That should have been acknowledged.

The Hamptons could have been a great girlfriends getaway, a trip of over-worked women escaping the bustle of the city to relax. But instead it descended into the “fuckery and foolishness” that I predicted (on camera) it would be on the drive out.

Months later, I’m still confused as to exactly why Mica came to the Hamptons—sans boyfriend--  to party with women she only met in the process of taping a TV show. What was so important in the Hamptons?

I'm also unclear— still— on what happened in that scene. When asked a basic question about Mica being late—which if you haven’t picked up on by now, is a Bravo staple for creating conflict; it’s happened once prior on BSH and on a recent episode of “Real Housewives of Atlanta”—  Mica goes from zero to 60  for absolutely no reason.

In Sag Harbor, I didn’t want to deal with her drunk behavior— the same behavior showcased on every episode thus far—  again. She was clearly looking for a fight. I wasn't up for it, especially since it’s not like reality stars get Emmys for great meltdowns or blowups. Acting out on camera may be her brand, but it isn’t mine. So I bounced to go powder my nose.

Mica says that made her feel dismissed by us. I felt set-up for another “L” by her.

Mica had an epic meltdown. After listening to her go on and on in the backyard of Brie’s home, loudly, for 20 minutes, Geneva said her piece; I also had enough and told Mica to leave.

Geneva and I went inside the house to get away from Mica. We were not bothering her. She already responded to us. We believed Mica was in the front yard getting into the cab Brie called for her earlier.

Then suddenly Mica’s at Brie’s parents' back door, trying to rip it off the rail.   There was no justifiable reason for that. And more important, I mean, really, REALLY, who does that anyway… at somebody’s mama house?!?!

Her father’s passing, which she declined to talk about when Geneva asked and did not share with the cast until after her meltdown, is unfortunate. But it is also  reprehensible to use it as an excuse for her obnoxious behavior.

I realized Mica was desperate, angry, unstable and unpredictable in that scene. I also realize there was no security on set. No one thought we’d need it on a show about professional women pursuing their dreams.

Mica’s fight with the door was a fight or flight moment for me. I might not have run off if I’d seen CBW there, pulling the door closed with one hand, shaking Milk Duds with the other, and telling Mica that she wasn’t getting in the house. I didn’t though, so I ran.

I didn’t want to be anywhere near her—still don’t.

The Grio: ‘Sky is the limit’ for Bravo’s new reality TV show

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(To watch: click HERE)

Bravo’s new reality TV show Blood, Sweat and Heels premiered Sunday night and broke ratings records.

The show chronicles six women who work in the areas of fashion, media and real estate while documenting their adventures around New York City as they balance their personal and professional lives. It kicked off Sunday night, drawing 2.5 million viewers and set records high as the highest reality series debut in network history.

The show’s Demetria Lucas and Geneva S. Thomas sat down with theGrio’s Lilly Workneh days after the series premiere and shared their sentiments on the show’s success.

“We’re all very dynamic women. We knew it was good but we didn’t know it was 2.5 million viewers good,” Lucas said. “The sky is the limit for Blood, Sweat and Heels and where it can go,” she added.

Both women are media professionals who have worked in the industry for years. Lucas is a published author of the top-selling book A Belle in Brooklyn and the creator of a highly read blog under the same name.

Meanwhile, Thomas began her career writing for various publications before launching her own digital-media agency. She has studied fashion overseas and worked for some of the biggest beauty and lifestyle brands.

Now, these two ladies join four other women in creating a cast that has come together to air and discuss issues with men, money and friendships.

“I feel like people were looking for something different, a fresh take,” Thomas said.

They are individuals in their own regard and share different opinions on a number of issues. The first episode showed a rift between some cast members when Lucas referenced a discussion the ladies had in a post on her personal blog. A preview for the second episode shows the women engaging in a heated discussion over the content in Lucas’ blog post.

“There was no malicious intent, I didn’t use names, I didn’t attack anyone and I was really talking about issues more so than what the women said,” Lucas clarified.

As for any choice words she has for any critics, she says: “Thank you for watching. Tune in next week.”

Catch the episodes of Blood, Sweat and Heels Sundays at 9 p.m. on Bravo.


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