Did anyone expect George Boswell, after his high-flying antics on Big Brother 1 in 2000, to quietly return to his home and to his roofing business in Rockford, Illinois?
Of course no one expected that. Instead, he flew the coop.
In 2006, he wants your vote to return to CBS' Big Brother All-Stars. He is one of 20 people vying for 12 bunks in the most watched domicile in America. If you want to place a vote for him, go to http://www.cbs.com/primetime/bigbrother7/index.shtml?contId=6
George's escapades over the past five years have included audience warm up for a minor league baseball team, acting in a comedy troupe in Chicago, performing in television commercials, gaming in Las Vegas, and helping fly airplane banners over the Big Brother house in Los Angeles.
Actually, George has only put up one roof since the show ended, as a favor to a friend. He set aside the tar and shingles for a career in public performance-sometimes strange, mostly funny, and all George.
After a year of trying to readjust to life in Illinois with his wife Teresa and three kids, George wanted to travel. From the TV show program, George made friends with Jerry Hider, the pilot who flew messages for fans over the TV program's location in Studio City, California. George spent the summer in an airplane hangar without air conditioning in Pacoima, California, taking calls from fans and unfolding secrets on Big Brother 2 through the air. Their company computer had little band width and didn't always work, so George couldn't watch the live internet feeds of the program. And sometimes the television reception wasn't great in the hangar if the coat hanger wasn't in the right position. And then there were the showers off the building on the landing strip.
BB2 was "that season," the one with the man who used knives creatively, the woman who guzzled Nyquil, and the lady who used a roommate's toothbrush to clean the toilet and then put it back in place. This was a sharp contrast from BB1, where some fans complained that group was too cohesive and friendly for what should have been a divisive game. While taking calls to order air banners, George had a chance to interact more with his fans.
The next year, George stayed home, opting instead to take comedy classes at Chicago's famed "Improv Olympics" on Clark Street. George and his group performed sketch comedy for awhile before he moved on.
About this time, George was the subject of a documentary about what happens to people after they spend time on a reality TV shows. For that project, for miscellaneous CBS public relations appearances, and to give lectures at a school in Manhattan, George got used to New York City. "I love the hustle and bustle," George said. Could he move there? He said the traffic is worse than L.A., but if there is a job offer.
George had calls from game shows including Street Smarts, where he won the top award against Big Brother 2's Monica. Another show, where George was asked to dress up in a protective suit and get bitten repeatedly by five mad German Shepherds, didn't go anywhere. George said no. They offered him $100 for each dog or $500 for his performance.
The local Rockford, Illinois minor league baseball club, the Rockford Riverhawks, asked George to do the pre-game and 7th inning stretch warm-ups. With George along, sometimes in a chicken suit but usually not, the team more than tripled its attendance at its shows.
"The first night on the job, nobody told me I couldn't drink on the baseball field. I'm out there drinking beer and having a good time with the fans. The owner of the team came up and said, you aren't allowed to drink here. And I got fired the first night."
After being allowed to finish the night, the owner changed his mind but told George not to drink on the job. At the end of the year, George received a big bonus. It was a ticket for one to Las Vegas.
In Las Vegas, George again fell in love with a city. Though he had done that already with Rockford, Chicago, Los Angeles, Houston, and New York City, Sin City got under his skin and in his blood. He stayed a year, working shows in casinos, hosting and acting as announcer for any new casino promotion at the Tropicana.
George was literally on his way home, driving the Nissan, when CBS called about Big Brother All-Stars. Luckily, he was not using his cell phone and driving when the call came it or he doubts he would have stayed on the road.
"Mostly, all the players in the game are younger than me. They have hard bodies. I don't. They have six pack abs and I have kegs. They might be warriors but I'm much more entertaining."
Who does he want to meet? George says Nakomis, Will (is he really a doctor? George says kidding), Erika, Mike Boogie the restaurateur if he can give George cooking lessons or maybe they'll rap together, and most of all, Marcellas. George added, he will enjoy meeting all or any of them.
Does George dream of meeting his fowl inspiration, San Diego Chicken Ted Giannoulas? George asks if the San Diego Chicken needs a sidekick. He could be Ed McMahon to Teddy's Johnny.
If George is voted back into the Big Brother house, does he expect his good friend Jerry to fly banners over the house? George has great expectations. Probably, the first flyover will include the words, "Good luck George!"