Read about it in this article written by the #1 Entertainment News Reporter in San Antonio. This article was in the Sunday, May 23, 2009 San Antonio Express News.
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Jeanne Jakle - Jeanne Jakle
San Antonio's Rita Verreos, our "Survivor" alumna, recently got wild and crazy on another CBS show, "The Price is Right."
Verreos, a mom, model and pageant coach, said she nearly knocked down host Drew Carey. Then she flirted with him — in Spanish no less. The episode airs at 10 a.m. Friday on KENS.
It started as a birthday present to her mother, Raquel Verreos, who also lives in San Antonio: two tickets to Los Angeles. Their first order of business was to get on "The Price is Right."
Mom certainly dressed the part, Verreos said. "She wore a T-shirt that said 'It's my birthday. I'm 75 today,' cute skinny jeans with rhinestones and a little red cowboy hat. She looked adorable."
Verreos was encouraged by her mom also to make a "look-at-me" T-shirt. "It said, 'The third time is the charm,' " she told me, explaining she'd been in the show's audience twice before but wasn't picked.
First time was 30 years ago, when she was about 10. Then-host Bob Barker had walked up to her seat to talk to her. "But we had just moved here from Venezuela and I didn't speak any English and couldn't understand him," Verreos said with a groan.
This time, however, she and her mom were determined to make up for prior disappointments. They exhibited lots of personality so they'd stand out among the hundreds waiting. It worked, at least for Rita.
When the taping started, she was called to the stage. "I was the first contestant!" she said. "I went ballistic." She wouldn't reveal how she did on the item bids but did say she spun the wheel and didn't go home empty-handed.
Verreos also hoped she hadn't hurt Carey. "I was so excited I jumped on him. But he seemed OK. He was cracking up the whole time."
After giving shout-outs to her mom in the audience and then to her kids in San Antonio, she looked up at Carey and noticed how strikingly blue his eyes were.
"I told him: 'Que bonitos ojos tienes!' (What beautiful eyes you have!)," Rita recalled. "He said 'I don't understand what you said but it sounded really good.' "
When it was over, she said, "I had the same feeling I had after my first parachute jump. My adrenaline was pumping. I couldn't believe I had made it on such an iconic American show." Though she would have preferred her mom to have been picked on her birthday, she added: "I know my mommy and she couldn't have been happier that her daughter got chosen."
She returned to San Antonio a much different Rita from the woman of "Survivor: Fiji" two years ago who got cut several weeks into the televised competition. When viewers watch "Price is Right" Friday, she promised, they'll see "an energetic Rita, not the starved, dehydrated one on 'Survivor.' "
Best of all, Verreos has a more positive TV catchphrase ringing in her head these days: "Instead of 'The tribe has spoken,' I keep hearing 'Rita Verreos: Come on down!' "