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Trivia pays off for housewife

Fri., Sept. 23, 2005

Sandpoint housewife and Housewives expert Donna Deshon can perform under pressure.

Her national title of “Desperate Housewives” Biggest Fan attests to that.

ABC’s “Good Morning America” had been promoting its ” ‘Desperate Housewives’ Biggest Fan Challenge” contest all summer. But Deshon, whose volunteer work includes Kinderhaven group foster home as well as the arts community in Sandpoint, was so busy she couldn’t enter until the last minute.

“I’m a ‘Desperate Housewives’ fan and a ‘Good Morning America’ fan,” she said. “I really wanted to enter.”

Her finalist-qualifying video – containing spoofs on the “burrito” and “lawnmower” scenes from the Emmy Award-winning television show – was produced on Sept. 7 with the help of her husband and daughters. Deshon sent it by overnight mail Sept. 8, and it arrived by ABC’s Sept. 9 deadline.

A week later, there was a knock on her door and she opened it to find an ABC television crew delivering balloons, DVDs of the first season of “Desperate Housewives,” and the news that she was one of three finalists nationwide.

So there she was, at 5:30 a.m. Thursday, in “Good Morning America’s” Manhattan studio, trying to stay sharp for the “Desperate Housewives” Trivia Challenge.

“The moment has arrived. It is finally here,” announced “Good Morning America” host Diane Sawyer.

“It was crazy,” said Deshon, reached by cell phone in New York Thursday afternoon. “When it came down to the final wire, my heart was beating so fast.”

Deshon decided her strategy was to hit the buzzer before the question was finished. She missed the first three questions that were quickly nailed by contestant Denny Connors of Allen Park, Mich.

But he never got another chance.

“In episode 10, Mike and Susan spend her birthday at a piano bar,” began Tony Perkins, master of ceremonies, when he was interrupted by the buzzer. “Donna, I didn’t finish the question. What’s your answer?”

“I’m going to guess New York, New York,” she responded.

“The question is, what song did Susan sing? The answer is indeed New York, New York,” Perkins said, according to “Good Morning America’s” transcript. “Donna has got 20 points.”

And so it went.

Teri Hatcher, who plays divorcee Susan Mayer in the TV show, asked the final question – what are the housewives’ last names? Deshon sealed her lead by getting four out of five right.

Now she’s looking forward to a tour of Wisteria Lane – the home of “Desperate Housewives” at Universal Studios in Hollywood – in November. But on Thursday, she was simply savoring her victory as she cruised the Big Apple by taxi.

“I’m still floating,” she said.


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