2007_08_arts_jaym.jpgIf you watch the reality shows, you probably wonder at the random, more boring, points of your day: Whatever happened to so-and-so from Project whatchamacallit? Or more likely, you don't.

NY Mag examines the sad, "near-fame experience" of being a Bravo reality star. Somewhere right below the D-list is the space the not-quite almost-famous Bravo TV stars occupy. Though the Bravo competition reality shows generally rely on actual skills, the article's first cautionary tale is Jay McCarroll, Project Runway's first winner.

Though he was given unprecedented reality spin-offshow episode after his win, NY Mag plays up the fact that McCarroll is "still homeless in New York" and perhaps spending too much time online: "My hands have been creatively crippled for two years—all those fucking eyes on me, reading that I’m a waste on blogs."

So what's a rising reality star to do? More importantly, what should they (and their significant others) know before signing the dotted line, which could very well signify an ellipses to their never-beginning career. Here's an unsolicited list of what to know before signing up for the next Bravo series:

1) You are not guaranteed fame or fortune.
2) No matter how many people recognize your face, you may still need to sleep where you work. (see: Santino)
3) Don't quit your day job! You may need to go back to waiting tables at the Disney Concert Hall. (that's what happened to Andrae Gonzalo!)
4) You may break up with the mother of your child. (see: Jeffrey Sebelia).
5) You will be asked by Bravo to participate in dignity-stealing reunion shows. (see: Top Chef contestants on the Season 1 vs. Season 2 challenge)
6) You may make plans to be a personality on a non-NBC Universal property, only for Bravo (owned by NBCU) to ask why you're not working with them. (see: Laura Bennett)
7) It may take years for you to build up a business.

And the best factoid: Sexy Sam Talbot was tipped off to Top Chef casting because he was in the running to be on The Bachelor.