Awards Show Etiquette

‘Tis the Season, and since I know all the industry insiders read this blog between meetings and lighting setups in their trailers, for your consideration I present the following tips to make your big night a memorable, gaffe-free one.

• Orange is the new tan. With February nearing, it’s time to externalize your inner Oompa Loompa. And don’t forget the eyebrow manicure.

• Don’t put the red carpet host(ess) in the awkward position of having to include your unfamous date in the on-camera chat out of courtesy. They’re lucky to get your own name right, Best Sound Editing guy.

• Guys, the Jimmy Fallon just-got-out-of-bed coif is over. Step into a comb.

• As your friend I can tell you that you’ve gotten a little fat this winter. Three or four days’ starvation is not too much to ask if you want to nail that “gaunt” look. Plus, this year I hear they’re giving away eight-balls in the gift baskets. You are getting soooo laid tonight once we realize that we could eat our morning cereal out of your solar plexus.

• Always blame the TelePrompTer; break that fourth wall and spoil the illusion of chemistry for us.

• Go ahead and unseal the envelope while the clips are playing so I don’t have to endure your fumblings with it like a prom dress zipper.

• Nominees, that guy with the big camera on his shoulder in your aisle? He’s in cue and ready to broadcast the slightest change in your facial expression. Use those performance instincts to at least feign grace until he points in a different direction. Especially when you’ve just been robbed by that no-talent hack from Gray’s Anatomy.

• Get your ass down the aisle when your name pops out of the envelope. The clock is ticking, the orchestra’s only charted the first four measures of your theme, and there will be plenty of time to high-five your entourage when you return to your table.

• If you’re in the can when your name is called, California law states that your seat-filler can accept the award on your behalf.

• You have a 20-25% chance of winning, so pretend that you’ve at least considered this fact in advance, in spite of your modesty.

• The podium mic is already at the proper height. I realize you rap for a living, but you don’t have to eat the damn thing.

• Actors, if you can memorize a two-page monologue, surely the name of your agent shouldn’t escape you.

• Always good to point out Jack Nicholson in the front row. The guy needs some more face time.

• If we wanted to hear your opinions on foreign policy or social causes, the U.N. would book you. Tonight is about celebrating your craft. Give the booth a URL to your Web site, and they can key it in during your speech. “For the complete list of my gratitude, and opinions on fur, please visit”

• Best Animated Short is fascinating, really, but please donate as much of your thirty-second speech as possible so they don’t have to play off Scorsese later.

• Could you ask someone if we can limit the In Memoriam segment to past nominees and winners only, please? You didn’t recognize them during their lifetime, so a postmortem three-second clip of a forgettable role is insulting.

• Go ahead and announce your new asking fee on the podium. It’s an honor just to be nominated, but those statues pad your back end.

About Gordon

Gordon Highland is the author of the novels Flashover and Major Inversions, with short stories in such publications as Word Riot, Black Heart, Noir at the Bar Vol. 2, and Warmed and Bound, among others. He lives in the Kansas City area, where he makes videos by day and music by night.
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2 Responses to Awards Show Etiquette

  1. Sonia says:

    hee hee Couldn’t have said it better myself. And stop calling their tan gowns “nudes,” ya preverts!

  2. apple martini says:

    i’m pretty sure the reason they do all their annoyingly long hugs n kisses at their table before going up to the stage is to force some screen time for their friends! so pretentious. if i ever win an an award, i’m just going to make out with my date at the table the whole 60 seconds.

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