Gary Busey, Ted Haggard Swap Wives

World’s Strangest Celebrity Pairing

In what is perhaps the most surreal bit of celebrity news this week, Gary Busey and Ted Haggard are featured on the first episode of ABC’s “Celebrity Wife Swap,” swapping, you guessed it, wives. That is, for a week. It was truly a clashing of cultures, with the wife of disgraced ultra-fundamentalist Haggard having to deal with the extreme New Age oddballness of Gary Busey (a choice Busey quote: “Earth is the best vacation place for advanced clowns.” Gotta give him props for that one.)

NY Daily News reports:

Gayle Haggard, disgraced pastor Ted Haggard’s long-suffering wife, faced an even bigger test of faith than her husband’s 2006 sex scandal on Tuesday night’s premiere of ABC’s “Celebrity Wife Swap.”

She had to spend a week living with (very) eccentric actor Gary Busey.

In this week’s episode of the exchange program, Busey’s fiancée, Steffanie Sampson, a Jewish spirtualist/hynotherapist put the couple’s 19-month-old son in the hands of the actor and boarded a flight to the Haggard home in Colorado Springs. Gayle, meanwhile, caught a flight to Busey’s Los Angeles version of Sodom and Gomorrah to learn that Steffanie and Gary had already spent 31 lifetimes together and are on their 32nd incarnation as a couple.

“Earth is the best vacation place for advanced clowns,” is one of his pearls of wisdom.

Let us pray.

Steffanie doesn’t have to be a psychic to immediately sense that there is a lot of pent-up anger and sadness among the Haggards’ five grown children, the youngest of whom, 18-year-old Elliot, has a smile that looks as if he’s gritting his teeth. Watching your father go from running a church of 14,000 to losing it all after a male prostitute came forward with allegations that the famous pastor had sex and used crystal meth with him will do that to a family.

But Steffanie proves to be a saint in that religious household, listening to the kids and fitting right in. There are some stumbles along the way, when she jousts with Ted over gay marriage and when she tries to lead a Bible reading study group and clearly doesn’t know her Gospel of John from her Gospel of Matthew.

On the other side of the spiritual divide, Gayle can’t get in very many words while Gary talks nonstop about himself.

“Do you go to church,” she asks him, to which he replies, “I am church.”

What do you make of what must surely be one of the strangest reality show concepts yet?

“Love and relationships are kind of like jobs, we change constantly until we find that right one that sticks around for the long haul.” – Lacy ext. 5494

“I counsel so many people who are in love with a married person. It is a wickedly difficult place for the one who waits as well as the one who stays at home and wonders.” – Jesse ext. 9027

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One thought on “Gary Busey, Ted Haggard Swap Wives

  1. Gina Rose ext.9500Gina Rose ext.9500

    Hi Krishna Bill,

    ” surreal ” ????? OMG….that is beyond surreal……LOL LOL LOL

    Love it !!!!!

    I HAVE to watch that for some giggles.

    Just thinking about that is too funny!


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