Our family's episode of Tanked aired last night. I watched it with some friends in Texas, where I'm attending the Blissdom blog conference. We had a total blast laughing and cringing and cheering throughout the show.
In the months since we shot the show and tonight on social media, I've gotten a LOT of questions about the fish tank and our experience on the show.
Here are a few fun frequently asked questions:
How did you end up on the show Tanked?
I told the full story of how we got on the show Tanked back in the fall. My husband is a huge, huge animal lover. He loves birds and fish and big cats and things I've never even heard of that God created. He had a fish tank when he was a kid and when the fish tanks shows starting popping up on tv, he got a vision.
He started working on me slowly, taking me to fish stores all over town. I mostly rolled my eyes. Then I tweeted about, then the producers contacted us. At the end of the day, this whole thing is my fault.
Who designed the tank?
The Gorilla worked with the ATM team on designing the tank. As an artist and perfectionist himself, my husband had very (very) specific ideas about what he wanted. He helped them choose everything from the distressed wood to the color of the coral. He was so particular about it, in fact, that he had them re-do a thing or two before it was installed. So all of the talk in the show about "the client" being "picky" it totally true.
We are so happy with how it turned out. The tank is a work of art and ATM is a stand up company all around.
Did you really not see it before it was installed?
We really did not see it before it was installed. It took several days for this massive installation, and even though we shot other parts of the show during that time, we managed not to peek down in the man room until it was entirely finished.
Who are those people with you during the reveal?
The Gorilla's brother and niece (big fans of Tanked) flew to LA for the shooting and the reveal. It was so special to have them at the house for this. We had a few other friends with us as well, some you might recognize from The Gorilla's movies.
Who paid for the tank?
We paid for the tank in full. I think the impression whenever you watch these shows is that the participants are getting a huge thing for free. This is not usually the case. Many times cable shows have very low budgets, so doing a major home reno (or in this case a fish tank) is not a line item. Why do it then? Well, honestly, that was my first question to The Gorilla. What do we get out of it?
The answer is that we did get something out of it. We got a fish tank created and installed by Wayde and Brett, on a quicker timeline than usual, and The Gorilla loved every second of it. From what I've been told, our equipment that runs the tank was a big upgrade. We also got a credit at the fish store when stocking the tank. So it wasn't that we didn't get any freebies, but the thing itself was certainly, definitely, 100% not approaching free.
Who takes care of the fish?
ATM is based in Las Vegas, so we hired a local company take care of the fish and the tank. They come once a week and clean the tank, check on the fish and the water levels, etc. It's sort of like having a pool guy.
On a daily basis, The Gorilla feeds the fish nightly and the eel several times a week. It's actually become a sweet part of our routine. After dinner, he and our kids go down to the man room to feed the fish and expend some energy before bedtime. We've all become pretty attached to the tank and the creatures inside.
Are you glad you got it?
Initially, I was resistant. That's putting it mildly. I stomped my foot down for a long time. It's hard for our family to have pets. We travel all the time, and it's difficult to be making arrangements for pet care every month. Besides the tank, we have two tortoises that The Gorilla has had for bazillions of years. They are relatively low-maintanence, but even tortoises have to eat.But, The Gorilla is not an extravagant man. We have a lovely, lovely life, but he has never gone out and bought a Lamborghini or any such thing. In all these years, if he wanted to treat himself to a fish tank, it was hard to say no. The opportunity fell into our lap, and it seemed like a sign.
This was the last minute watch party I put together at the hotel. This is my reaction.
What a fun, fun thing to be a part of. Thanks for all your tweets and messages, it was a blast watching it unfold on the screen and I was so excited finally to show you the finished product. I've changed up the room since we shot the show, but that's a whole 'nother post.
If there's anything you're curious about that I haven't covered here, let me know in the comments!