As the "Price is Right" is about to come on and it's one of those every other Tuesday mornings when Joyce Yarde cleans Celie Helman's midtown Columbus home, Yarde tunes the TV in the den to the game show and turns up the volume.
"Sometimes I listen to it when I'm in another room," said Yarde, 65.
And sometimes she talks to the TV. When she guesses the price of the item more accurately than the contestants, without going over, she hollers, "You should have listened to me!"
Wednesday, the show's national TV audience will listen to Yarde holler for a different reason. She will be one of the contestants announcer George Gray invites to "Come on down!"
Yarde returned a winner from her vacation last month to California, but she isn't allowed to disclose the prize before her episode airs.
Maybe, just maybe, the prize is good enough to help her 35-year-old daughter, Danetta, who certainly could use a new car after a series of mishaps.
'Just exciting to be there'
This was Yarde's second time attending the "The Price is Right." In 2005, she traveled to California for a funeral. While in Los Angeles, she went to the show with some relatives.
Attending the show is free, but you must stand in line a long time for the morning or afternoon tapings. They arrived at 11 a.m. for the 4 p.m. taping and were among the first 325, so they were admitted, but none of them was among the nine invited to "Come on down!"
"I wasn't upset," Yarde said. "It was exciting just to be there."
Ten years later, she had saved up enough money to take a vacation to California and visit relatives and "The Price is Right" again. This time, a cousin went online to get priority tickets to the show, at least guaranteeing seats in the audience for the May 15 afternoon taping.
Yarde also felt better prepared for the interview staff members conduct while hopefuls stand in line.
"The first time, I was too nervous and kind of quiet," she said. "The second time, I was more joyous."
She also was more uplifted. Her church friends at One Way Deliverance prayed for her, "and the Lord answered those prayers," she said.
Yarde was the second person invited to "Come on down!" She hesitated, not because she wasn't eager but because she wasn't sure her named was called. Then she saw her name written on the cue card - and she hollered even louder than when she watches the show in Helman's den.
"It was so exciting," she said. "I felt so lucky to be picked my second time there. Somebody was there 20 times and never was picked."
The four contestants were shown a watch.
"The whole show was a blur," she said. "When it comes on, I want to see what I guessed, but I think it was $1,200, and it was like 17-something."
When her guess was declared the best, Yarde ran on stage and shouted over and over, "Oh, God! Oh, God! ."
She doesn't remember whether she hugged or kissed host Drew Carey, but she said the replacement for the legendary Bob Barker, who retired in 2007, "has grown on me."
Yarde can't discuss the details about the rest of the episode, although she did disclose that she performed her "holy dance" when she won her prize.
"It was a big prize," Helman said. "That's all that she's told me."
Yarde lost in the spinoff, so she didn't qualify for the showcase showdown at the end of the show. Still, she is grateful for the experience.
"I'd go again," she said, "but you can't for another 10 years if you win."
They plan to have a viewing party on June 10 in the home of one of her clients at Spring Harbor. Knowing she will be on national TV is "overwhelming," Yarde said, "but I didn't think about it during the show. I was just in the moment."
"It couldn't have happened to a nicer person," said Helman, retired from the wholesale vintage jewelry business.
Yarde does more for Helman than clean her house.
"She's my therapist," Helman said with a smile. "She's a joyous person. She lights up the house, which is really good when you live alone."
No wonder Helman doesn't mind when Yarde takes time to watch the show while cleaning her house.
"I'm glad she's enjoying herself," Helman said, adding that Yarde does such a good job, "you can eat off the floor."
Yarde was born in Belize and came to Columbus in 1979, when her husband, Frederick, was sent to Fort Benning as a specialist. He died in 2003. She has two children and six grandchildren.
After working in data entry at Dolly Madison for 23 years and retiring in 2000, Yarde became a certified nursing assistant. She works for Rescare, which provides residential support services to the disabled and seniors.
Helman's home is the only one Yarde cleans. She used to care for Helman's sister, the late Jeanne Weil. Seven years ago, Wiel told Yarde that Helman could use some help around her house.
"I was off on Tuesday mornings anyway," Yarde said.
In February, Danetta borrowed Yarde's car to take her child to the doctor. A woman crashed into them and was charged with DUI. They were OK, but the car was totaled. The woman didn't have insurance, and the money Yarde received from her insurance wasn't enough to get a new car, so one of her Rescare clients loaned her a car.
Danetta, a dispatcher for Road America, saved up for another car, but somebody else totaled that one last month. Then her rental car was stolen.
Asked whether her prize could help her daughter, Yarde replied with a laugh, "I can't say."
"She will not crack," Danetta said.
And she won't permit leaks. Danetta's curiosity got the best of her when Yarde left for church and left the packet from "The Price is Right" within Danetta's sight. Danetta peeked inside, but Yarde had removed the confidential information.
Regardless of what she won on the show, Yarde wants her victory to show her daughter, who beat a leukemia diagnosis at age 5, the value of perseverance.
"It encourages us to keep holding on," she said. "Life gets better."
WHEN TO WATCH
What: Columbus resident Joyce Yarde competing on the TV game show "The Price is Right"
When: Wednesday at 11 a.m.
Note: Don't be late. Yarde is the first contestant on stage during her episode.