Brent Buckman, <EM>The Apprentice</EM> Brent Buckman, The Apprentice

You knew it had to happen but probably not quite so soon. On last week's installment of NBC's The Apprentice, Brent Buckman was given the boot because of his failure to do nothing properly. Meaning, he was assigned to do nothing on the Grape-Nuts task, but couldn't even accomplish that to project manager Tammy's liking. Talk about "Can't win for losing"! How does Brent feel about his Apprentice portrayal? TVGuide.com asked the Toronto-born attorney about that and more.

TVGuide.com: Clear up for us the exact scope of your responsibility on the Grape-Nuts task.
Brent Buckman:
My responsibility was really nothing.

TVGuide.com: You were put in charge of "the wardrobe." What did that mean?
Brent:
Put it this way: whatever it was, it was really minimal! They didn't really give me anything to do and that was their strategy. I'm certainly capable of a lot more than what I was doing.

TVGuide.com: Having lobbied (and failed) to be included in the billboard presentation, were you secretly pleased when Sean stammered his way through it?
Brent:
I wasn't pleased because I knew when he did that, there was a chance my team was going to lose.

TVGuide.com: And by losing, they'd be boardroom-bound... which couldn't possibly be good news for you.
Brent:
Absolutely. In the previous boardroom Mr. Trump had called me a total disaster, so I certainly wanted to stay away from there. I stand by the fact that I could have done a much better presentation than Sean did. I could have gotten those executives looking at me and listening, and I really could have gotten them excited about the product. A bad billboard can be made to look a lot better by a great presentation. Unfortunately, Tammy missed the mark on that and decided that I shouldn't give the speech, basically implying that I was fat and that wasn't the image they were trying to convey. That was a big mistake.

TVGuide.com: I worked in the outdoor-advertising biz for a spell and you're really not supposed to have more than six words on a billboard. Synergy's banner had, like, 23.
Brent:
Well, we can blame that one on Andrea, because she was the one in charge of the design of the billboard.

TVGuide.com: As Synergy headed into the boardroom, what did you feel your own odds of survival were?
Brent:
I really thought I was going to survive, because I didn't think I did anything wrong. How could I screw anything up if I wasn't given anything to do?! I was in complete and utter shock when Mr. Trump fired me. Normally I'm pretty good at thinking on my feet, but there wasn't even a second boardroom [deliberation]  he fired me right there. It was like I was hit with a train.

TVGuide.com: Andrea railed at you for always running late. Tell the truth: Are you one of those people who's always tardy?
Brent:
My wife said that when we go out with friends, she gets a little annoyed with me for running late. So yes, sometimes I do that. Not always, but sometimes  and my wife has reprimanded me for it. [Laughs]

TVGuide.com: Was it my imagination or did you try to work a massage clinic into every task?
Brent:
[Laughs] Let me tell you something: I have been told in the past that I give great massages and I figured that if I like giving massages, other people would enjoy getting massages. [The third episode's Chevy-GM] executives are hardworking people, so they probably wouldn't have minded a massage. And remember, in the [Sam's Club] task, we used it and won. I wasn't so far off to propose a successful idea that had worked in the past.

TVGuide.com: When I remarked to Summer that on my HDTV, it looked like some of you were "a bit moist," she admitted that you two were "the sweaters."
Brent:
Yes. I agree with that. By the way, since the show I've lost 62 pounds and 11 inches off my waist.

TVGuide.com: Are you on Jared's Subway diet?
Brent:
Oh, no, I've created my own diet called "the four-bagel plan."

TVGuide.com: We'll get to that later.
Brent:
Absolutely. As far as the sweating goes, when I was obese I was sweating more. There was nothing I could do about it. I sweat a whole hell of a lot less now, I can tell you that.

TVGuide.com: Summer's the only one I've interviewed thus far who seems to have had a soft spot for you. Have you kept in touch at all?
Brent:
I'm not allowed to comment on that, but I will say that Summer's a very nice person and a good candidate for The Apprentice. I'm sorry she was fired so soon.

TVGuide.com: Did anyone besides Summer give you a fair shake?
Brent:
For the most part, I feel my team really didn't want to give me the time of day. I'm only going to comment on the footage that was seen, but I did speak with Lenny and Lee in Episode 4. They gave me the time of day.

TVGuide.com: What does your wife think of your Apprentice depiction, seeing how it was apparently a bit skewed?
Brent:
My wife was disappointed at what happened and upset at how my teammates were treating me because she loves me and doesn't want to see that. But I had no problem with it. I feel I held my own and defended myself. I'm very proud of myself and my appearance and my accomplishments on The Apprentice. I'm a very outgoing, fun and loving person. I love dealing with people and people love dealing with me  that just didn't happen in the Apprentice environment, unfortunately.

TVGuide.com: OK, now educate me on the four-bagel plan.
Brent:
Oh, absolutely! While I was on the show and afterwards, I was doing this diet I created from scratch called "the four-bagel diet." You have a bagel for breakfast with light or low-fat margarine and a glass of water. You have the same thing for lunch, and the same thing for a midafternoon snack. For dinner, I have a bagel with 8 ounces of meat, and once a week I have a treat  either chicken fingers and French fries, or pizza, or an ice-cream sundae, or cake. That's what I did on Version 1 of my diet.

TVGuide.com: And on Version 2... you started putting the ice-cream sundae on a bagel?
Brent:
That would have been funny, but no. [Laughs] In Version 2, I had for breakfast a bagel with margarine and a glass of water, but I also threw in orange juice to get the vitamin E in there and a multivitamin to make it a little more nutritious. The other difference is that I've been running on the treadmill an hour and a half, and sometimes I've been swimming. It's been working out for me and I'm loving it.

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