By Michael Rand
A special thanks to ESPN’s Josh Krulewitz and, of course, to Erin Andrews for calling within 24 hours our initial request through Josh. They made life easy. Now, on to Part II.
RandBall: How did Men’s Health get you to talk about men’s grooming?
Erin Andrews: (Laughs). They actually just called ESPN. … They said, we want to have her do something. She’s around men 24/7, what does she see and what doesn’t she see? I actually just got an e-mail from a guy today who is with the American Cancer Society, who said, “I know it wasn’t in the context you thought it was going to create awareness, but anyway we can get skin cancer awareness out there, it’s really big to us.” … And I think the one exception I’ve taken to all the blogs and Internet stuff is there was a photo of me last week on the Internet with Tim Tebow. There is a photo of my calves, and people were freaking out about how white they are. Well, they’re not that white. They’re not that bad. But people have no idea, and it was the first time I wanted to write back on a blog, but I have an inch-and-a-half scar on my leg, right by my calf, from where I had the beginning stages of skin cancer. … I was never diagnosed with skin cancer, but there’s a scar on my leg. It was two years ago. Growing up in Florida, I used to fry myself. I will have to put the tanning cream on because obviously I can’t be white for these Internet blogs. But it was the first time I wanted to write back and just be like, “OK, now this is getting personal.”
RB: You said, in that Men’s Health piece, “Laid back is sexy. Let David Beckham or Tom Brady be your guide.” No offense, but if you look like Becks or Mr. Bundchen, you don’t need much help. Could you provide our readers with some more realistic examples they might be able to follow?
EA: First of all, what I meant – and I’m frustrated that it didn’t come out this way – is I don’t mind if a guy is going to use a lot of products to get ready. That’s fine. I just don’t want to know about it. And quite frankly, I don’t want him to take longer than me to get ready. But what I like is if a guy does take a lot of time, it shouldn’t look like you did. I don’t know how long it takes Tom Brady or David Beckham to get ready, but seriously, to me, it looks like they just threw on a rag pair of jeans and a hot shirt and called it a day. It looks like it took nothing to get ready, and it probably did take a lot of time.
RB: OK, so we’ll all work on that – looking a little more like Tom Brady and David Beckham.
EA: (Laughs) Come on! We’re all supposed to look like Gisele and Marissa Miller, so give me a break. Like Jessica Alba.
RB: Speaking of sexy, Playboy bestowed upon you the honor of “Sexiest Sportscaster” in 2007. Do you think we’re ever going to come to a day when we run out of “sexy” list categories?
EA: I don’t think so … because I buy the “Sexiest Man Alive” People Magazine. I’ll be completely honest: When I’m not working in sports, a totally male-dominated field where I don’t get to be a girl and I don’t get to talk about pop culture and are Gisele and Tom Brady really getting married, when I go back on the airplane or I come home and am with my girlfriends who can care less about sports, that’s what we talk about. That’s a release for me. I’m finally able to be a girl. They could care less about the Cubs, and if this could be their year. That’s my release. And I’m someone who will look at those lists instead of batting averages.
RB: I think we all look at those lists.
EA: See, and I love that a guy admits he does. That’s perfect.
RB: OK, here’s my clichéd question: What are three things about you that would surprise people if they knew?
EA: I’m an in-closet Beavis & Butthead fan. My sister and I speak the lingo like 95 percent of the time. Um …. I’m a huge “The Hills” fan.
RB: That one doesn’t necessarily surprise me, but I’ll let you get away with that.
EA: OK, well let me think of another one … the one person I haven’t interviewed and I want to interview so bad is Brett Favre. He’s the one guy I grew up cheering for with my dad, and the reason I’m in sports is my dad. There are a couple of athletes that I sit on the couch and root for. Larry Bird, I already met him, and I made a complete idiot of myself. I was just so awestruck, and basically in five seconds I told him I grew up having a Larry Bird backpack — and this was like two years ago, I’m such an idiot – and I know all about him … and my dad and sister and I ran up the stairs at Boston Garden before they tore it down, where he ran out after he hit his head when he was playing the Indiana Pacers, and we have a photo of that and it’s in my kitchen. I mean, I literally embarrassed the crap out of myself. … I didn’t do as bad embarrassing myself when I met Pedro Martinez, but I think I said, “Oh my god, Pedro, I’m so excited to meet you right now,” and I think David Wright rolled his eyes at me. But Brett Favre is one athlete I’ve never met, and I’ve always wanted to interview.
RB: Maybe you’ll break the story that he’s coming back. Because he is.
EA: Yeah, I would love it if he was. OK, and the third thing is that I have to eat Chick-fil-A like twice a week.
EA: Yes. I love it.
RB: You’re going to be a correspondent on the National Spelling Bee. What do you think that assignment is going to be like?
EA: I don’t know, but I’m really excited. I remember in high school, we taped it on our VCR, and that was the year the girl, I think, the Saturday Night Live cast made a skit out of her. She was screaming (the letters). I think it’s really funny I’ve been put on it because I’m one of the worst spellers ever. My dad is legendary for telling stories about how I used to sit down with him when I had a spelling test, and if I got one wrong I’d have to write it out 20 times. Spellcheck is my best friend. Thank god I don’t have to write newspaper articles. … But I’m just starting to learn what (the spelling bee assignment) entails. I think it’s going to be fun. I worked Little League the last couple of years and the kids are such a riot there. These kids are so serious, and I think I’m going to be more nervous talking to them than they are talking to me.
RB: Is there one word that gets you every time?
EA: I can’t say because I’ll get killed on the Internet.
RB: OK, we’ll spare you because you’re probably right.
EA: Let’s say Pierzynski. That’s the word that gets me all the time. Or Podsednik.
RB: Are you serious?
EA: If I had to spell Pierzynski all the time, I think I’d die.
RB: Last question: What’s next? Seriously, in an ideal world, where would your career go from here? It seems like you probably have opened up some options at this point based on your popularity.
EA: Yeah, a lot of things are starting to come down, and it’s really happened within the last month. Some entertainment opportunities are being discussed.
RB: I take it you’re being purposely vague there?
EA: Yeah, but there are some opportunities that have come about over the last couple of weeks. The biggest challenge for me will be to really smart with things. I’m definitely interested in pursuing other options, but at the same time I want to be true to myself. I still really love being at games. Despite growing up a Red Sox fan, I’m at Yankee Stadium the other night, and it’s bottom of the ninth, two on, Yankees down by three, and Alex Rodriguez is up, and he can tie it. This is cool. I love stuff like that. I don’t think I’m ready to leave the games yet, but I may be ready to take something else on along with doing games. I don’t know what that’s going to be yet. I made a statement in USA Today about Kelly Ripa. I’d love to maybe fill in for her a couple of times if she needs a vacation. I’d love to sit with Regis and talk about Notre Dame and Yankees/Red Sox. I’d love to do a show with her and I, chatting about stuff.