A lot can happen in 24 hours. One moment, you could wake up in Winnipeg during a polar vortex, and the next you could be standing beside Harrison Ford and Aubrey Plaza.
While that may not be the story for many Winnipeggers, it is for one woman who found herself seat filling at the Emmy Awards Monday night.
Amanda Buhse said she was the sole Canadian of 50 applicants chosen to warm the seats of A-list celebrities at the Emmys, and despite the cost and rapid turnaround, she has no regrets.
“It’s really hard to describe it. It felt like a fever dream,” she said.
Off the top of the evening, she “walked past Jennifer Coolidge and Natasha Lyonne in row one. And as I’m standing there waiting, Natasha Lyonne looked at me and complimented my hair. She was like, ‘Hey, I like your hair,’ and I died. It was amazing,” Buhse said.
She said she spent a lot of time in row one, and a good chunk of the night filling Christina Applegate’s seat.
“She was so kind and so sweet, and every time she’d come back she was like ‘I’m so sorry,’ and I was like ‘Oh my gosh, do not be sorry. This is your seat. Oh my goodness, I am just so honoured to sit in your seat!’” Buhse said.
During commercial breaks, she said it was a bit of a gong show. “As the seat filler, our role is to basically take the seats within the first 10 rows of anyone that is going to the washroom or that’s getting a drink or anything like they’re going on stage to present,” she said.
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“So, every time there’s a commercial break, it’s basically like musical chairs. You’re just constantly kind of being shifted around. But luckily, I was in this little triangle of seats where I was going from row one and row two, kind of back and forth,” Buhse said, adding she was always sitting beside different people.
The Winnipegger said she brushed elbows with more celebrities at the end of the awards.
“Everyone had to walk out the same exit, and it was chaos. Picture a Jets game, right? When you’re trying to leave the stadium,” she said. “And I looked around me, and I just couldn’t believe it. There was Aubrey Plaza beside me, Harrison Ford was in front of me, and Jason Sudeikis, and Jenna Ortega –they’re all kind of around me.”
While some may say you should never meet your heroes, Buhse said these heroes were worth it.
“It’s seeing the reality behind the facade of Hollywood. You make it out to be this crazy thing — which it is, it absolutely is,” she said, but there’s more behind the scenes.
She said she got to see “just how heartwarming and truly kind everyone is, and how real they are,” adding, “I didn’t encounter anyone that was mean or, you know, gruff or anything.”
Even though her pockets and wallet are lighter than before, and she had to check her phone so couldn’t get any selfies, Buhse said the night was a dream come true.
“This is a once-in-a-lifetime thing,” she said.
For others on the edge of what could be an out-there, fever-dream experience, she said, “go do it. Be spontaneous. Take risks. Have an adventure, and sometimes the most unbelievable things can happen.”
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