You know you have done something many more times than you should when newbies call you “the Oracle”.
This was the nickname given to me when I entered the Big Brother Mzansi house for the umpteenth time.
Every year, the folks from M-Net treat members of the media to a night’s stay in a newly furbished studio house to promote the latest Big Brother Mzansi series. The idea is to test the home with people who would presumably be watching the show when the season begins.
So we step in as “contestants” for one day and leave the next day. As with any normal Big Brother show, all of our electronic gadgets were seized and we were left to get to know each other.
A few familiar faces from other publications came through, including Kuli Roberts, whom I would rather be “the Oracle” as she’s been there a couple of times as well.
In keeping with the rules of the show, we played a game where a housemate who picked a certain card would become the Head of House, and a writer from Daily Sun, Doreen Molefe, got the right card.
It became apparent that Molefe enjoyed her role a little too much as she commandeered us in everything we did. This, of course, got Roberts worked up and at some point it seemed as if a fight would ensue.
Luckily it did not and we received another task where we had to show off our artistic skills on a supplied board. I made doodles of every housemate and to my surprise they all liked them, yet I had spent only a little time on each one.
Another task, a physical one this time, came later where we were blindfolded and asked to pick up some rugby balls and return them to a designated line. Although I was confident of being the fastest contestant, my team lost and guess who led her team to victory? Kuli Roberts. Again I say she should be “the oracle” and appear on the credits when the show finally ends.
We had two non-media members, Lisa and her mother Sally, from Botswana in our midst. The sweet pair had won a competition to be on the show and it was evident they were having the time of their lives.
It only rained at night and we slept because for some reason Big Brother thought it funny to cut back on the supply of alcohol. We even offered to buy booze, but he would hear none of it.
Overall it may have been just another year for this oracle, but in reality the franchise is doing a lot to remain relevant.
As was seen on Sunday at the launch, an incredible 18 people are in the house right now and it appears they will be creating a lot of drama this time around.
The women are obviously selected on the basis of their good looks, while the men have to be entertaining. You have the likes of Loko and Thando who are alpha females and already out to garner more popularity.
The boys, since there is not one Boris Kodjoe lookalike, all depend on being entertaining. House music DJ Sol Phenduka made a surprise appearance on the show as a contestant and he is having the time of his life.
The show is shot with 62 cameras and 102 microphones so there is no place to hide for these contestants. But for a cool R1 million, we could all give it a try, right?
The host, Lungile Radu, (pictured) did a stellar job on Sunday. There is just no comparing him to the Nigerian host IK, who handles Big Brother Africa, as they each have their own approach to hosting the show.
For more information on the reality programme, see www.bigbrothermzansi.tv.
• Big Brother Mzansi airs 24/7 on DStv channels 197 and 198.