By Tim Cuprisin Media Columnist Published Feb 19, 2010 at 11:00 AM
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Anna Lynett signed on to Lifetime's "Project Runway" to win it. But you don't hear a lot of regret from her a week after the young designer was cut from the "reality" competition.

"I had a positive experience, because I was determined that I was going to have a positive experience," the 23-year-old Whitefish Bay native told me in a Thursday afternoon phone conversation. "I went into it with a certain sense of humor. I definitely wanted to have fun."

A friend suggested that she apply for "Runway." She'd seen it before, but wasn't a regular viewer of the show, which airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. on Lifetime.

"I just sort of did it on a whim. I didn't expect to be chosen at all. I did it sort of on the recommendation of a friend. I wasn't doing it so I could launch my TV career at all."

She moved to Los Angeles about a year and a half ago, after attending the Rhode Island School of Design, to start a career.

"I was very focused on gallery work or museum work or studio art-related work. Getting a job in the fashion industry is very different that what I imagined what I would be doing here," she said.

But it sounds like the biggest lesson of "Runway" is not to be locked into a plan.

"Especially in this economy, I know a lot of people, a lot of my friends, other young people, have really been set on doing one thing, and been disappointed by their experience of being turned down over and over again.

"I think there's a certain amount of security and creation of identity that's oriented around having a career plan. People feel safe and excited and organized when they're planning a career.

"But if I've learned anything in the past year and a half trying to get a job in L.A., it's not only that you've have to be really tough," she said. "But also that you really have to adapt what your plan is."

On TV: ABC's "America’s Funniest Home Videos" is marking its 20th season with segments from a different state each week, and this weekend's installment focuses on Wisconsin, featuring videos from New Berlin and East Troy. It airs at 6 p.m. Sunday on Channel 12.

  • NBC's Wednesday night ratings win with Olympics coverage from Vancouver was the first time something has beaten Fox's "American Idol" in its time slot since since May 17, 2004.
  • If you're looking for a list of the 24 "Idol" semi-finalists, here's a good link from Ryan Seacrest's blog.
  • Tina Fey's going to returning to NBC's "Saturday Night Live" in April to host the show for which she was once head writer. And, yes, it looks like they'll at least try to get a Sarah Palin impression on the episode.
  • Octomom Nadya Suleman will visit ABC's "The View" on Wednesday at 10 on Channel 12. Expect a grilling.

Love that Ricky Gervais: Here's a little of Ricky Gervais' new animated show, debuting tonight at 8 on HBO. Or, you can watch the first episode at HBO's Web site.

By the way, "Real Time with Bill Maher" returns from hiatus at 9 tonight on HBO.

Tim Cuprisin Media Columnist

Tim Cuprisin is the media columnist for He's been a journalist for 30 years, starting in 1979 as a police reporter at the old City News Bureau of Chicago, a legendary wire service that's the reputed source of the journalistic maxim "if your mother says she loves you, check it out." He spent a couple years in the mean streets of his native Chicago, and then moved on to the Green Bay Press-Gazette and USA Today, before coming to the Milwaukee Journal in 1986.

A general assignment reporter, Cuprisin traveled Eastern Europe on several projects, starting with a look at Poland after five years of martial law, and a tour of six countries in the region after the Berlin Wall opened and Communism fell. He spent six weeks traversing the lands of the former Yugoslavia in 1994, linking Milwaukee Serbs, Croats and Bosnians with their war-torn homeland.

In the fall of 1994, a lifetime of serious television viewing earned him a daily column in the Milwaukee Journal (and, later the Journal Sentinel) focusing on TV and radio. For 15 years, he has chronicled the changes rocking broadcasting, both nationally and in Milwaukee, an effort he continues at

When he's not watching TV, Cuprisin enjoys tending to his vegetable garden in the backyard of his home in Whitefish Bay, cooking and traveling.