Five questions with Jason Cameron, Mr. 'Man Caves'
While researching an upcoming story about the pop culture co-opting of the man cave, we had an opportunity to chat with a guy who has seen -- and helped to build -- more than his share of man caves. Jason Cameron is a licensed general contractor and co-host (with former NFL player Tony “Goose” Siragusa) of DIY Network’s “Man Caves,” the makeover program that first hit the airwaves in summer 2007.
We posed five questions to Cameron, pictured here, about his nearly five years in the man cave:
Question: To date you’ve helped build more than 100 man caves over the course of nine seasons, so what are the absolutely key elements -- the things any shed, garage or basement needs to have in order to be considered a genuine man cave?
Cameron: Actually I think we’re at something like 110 or 115 to date. But, in my opinion, the staples of any man cave are a bar, No. 1 -- because we have never done a man cave without one. A kegerator is another must. Then there’s a big, flat-screen TV -- usually multiples of those -- and a comfortable recliner to sit in. Oh, and then the guy, of course.
On the flip side, is there anything that’s an absolute man cave deal-breaker?
No doilies. I don’t know what a doily is, but I don’t like the sound of it. No pinks, no fuchsias, no scented candles, throw pillows or afghans. There’s a pretty long list, but those are right at the top of it.
Of all the man-cave makeovers and installations you’ve done, what’s been your favorite to date?
One of my favorite ones will always be the USO’s “troop cave.” I give DIY a lot of credit for this because they shipped everything -- and I mean everything, from our trailer to our tools -- over to Kuwait, which was a huge challenge. We went to Camp Virginia in Kuwait and redid a USO tent for the troops. it was an amazing experience to be in that environment with them.
My other favorite man cave was probably Rainn Wilson’s (pictured at the end of this post). That one was a lot of fun and he was a lot of fun.
After nine seasons, is there a man-cave challenge out there you’re still aching to get your hands on?
I would love to do an actual cave -- find a cave that someone lives near. We’ve never done that on the show. And an ice shanty, one of those shanties that’s constructed completely out of ice. We’ve never tricked out one of those before either. It’d be cool.
You’ve got a man cave of your own, right?
You know, I don’t, and that’s the tragedy of this whole thing. My co-host, Goose, has a man cave, his restaurant has a man cave, and now his wax figure at Madame Tussauds has a man cave. I had to build his wax figure a man cave, and I still don’t have a man cave.
Jason Cameron, right, poses with co-host Tony Siragusa, left, and "The Office" actor Rainn Wilson in Wilson's man cave. Credit: Jack Parker / DIY Network
“Man Caves” airs at 9 p.m. Fridays on DIY Network.
-- Adam Tschorn