Riding the Chinatown Bus with a Real World: Brooklyn Cast MemberS

Well, waiting in a vestibule with him. Muscle-bound Scott decided to casually introduce himself to a young lady, and me being a lameo, I eavesdropped. It was kind of sad.

The bus was late and it was cold, so people were crammed inside the bus line's storefront. After about five minutes, I heard behind me the familiar, whispery cadences of a just-outside-Boston accent. There was this Scott character, seeming painfully normal in that earnest, doofy way boys from that neck of the woods can be. But then he started chatting up some young lady (a fashion business student) and the Real, ridiculous story unfolded.

He was an actor! And a model! And, uh, yeah… He'd, y'know, just finished shooting his season of the Real World. Never mind that the show is a useless husk at this point, only slightly interesting now because this season happens to take place in the borough of increasingly ill repute. No, that doesn't matter. This was this lad's moment! And damned if he wasn't going to let this young chippy know about it. Repeatedly. At length.

He kept offering info in this faux-tentative way. "You know... this season's just been so hyped," he informed her-after she had expressed how lame the show had gotten. "It's crazy" [with mock amazement barely covering thrilled-with-himself awe] "Like, on the 'net. 30 web agencies just interviewed us." And, you know, he was "trying to get some work done," which meant tinkering around on some site where he could "talk to fans." You know, all those fans. Of the show that hasn't aired yet.

He went on to explain that, because he was one day going to be in movies, the on-camera training was really valuable. But the show isn't for everyone, he warned. No, you have to be in the proper mental and physical shape to endure it. Luckily he was well built for the endeavor. "The promos seem good," he added when nobody asked him. "They make me seem just like I work out. It's a lot of me shirtless. But that's OK," he said chuckling, oh so dismissively. Yeah, that's OK! I'm sure they'll round out your character! (For the record, MTV's website currently describes his character as such: "Often perceived to be a 'musclehead,' it is hard to believe that this muscular personal trainer used to be a 90-pound weakling.")

He doesn't drink-maybe five or six drinks the whole time, he told the girl. And living in Red Hook was a drag. It could take 2 hours just to get to Manhattan! (I don't know if I believe that. Maybe I do.) Most importantly though, young Scott vaguely knows CT, the lunking, equally-accented broheim from the Paris iteration. The world is small.

These days, now that the show is over, he lives in an apartment, with two of the other girls from the show. He's doin' the acting thing and just did press week for the show and his phone is just brrrringin' off the hook. At one point there was a slight, awkward pause in their conversation. So he decided to reiterate just HOW MUCH his phone rings. "Yeah, I just got all these calls and, uh, one of them was the Boston Globe. They want to interview me tomorrow." This was the second time he'd mentioned this impressive Globe get. The girl seemed nonplussed.

But, I dunno, can we really blame him for his "guess what? Guess what??" braggy attitude? All of this must be so new for a boy who's "worked in a mill" his whole life. And now here he is answering his always-blowin'-up BlackBerry for interviews. And advising some fashion student on where to live cheaply in New York City ("live in the outskirts," he said several times. I pictured the girl finally setting her bags down in some tattered corner of Yonkers, her heart swelling. "I did it!") It's an entirely different life he has now, so suddenly. How quickly we can become whole different people! Just like that.

Sadly we sat too far away on the bus for me to overhear anymore. But a tipster, who was on the same bus!, tells us:

Real world red hook cast member scott was here conducting phone interviews and talking very loudly to a "fan" saying things like "I don't think im better than anyone but...." I was sitting right behind him and was trying to do work. He was talking so loud and wouldn't stop. He didn't even have the decency to turn the sound off his phone while gchatting or whatever. On top of that he kept crawling under my seat looking for the back to his phone!

When we finally got to South Station, I wanted to catch one more snippet from this Scott of The Real World: Brooklyn, formerly of New Hampshire. You know, before he bumbles onto the TV. I'm sure we'll see a lot of him then, when that happens. (Aside from the upcoming Real World premiere, he wants to do one of those Challenge series, he oh-so-casually told the girl). But by the time I'd grabbed my suitcase from the bus's metal gut, he was way ahead of me. He became, like the rest of us, just another face in the crowd. Unrecognizable! Wholly unremarkable. Maybe for one last time before the show premieres. Here in the bus station just before Christmas. Here in cold, old Boston.

Out here in the real world.