It's easy to hate Anthony Crapella. He's loud and sarcastic and has a penchant for dropping his pants and streaking through crowds.
"My goal is to get famous before I'm famous," he boasts.
At first glance, the unemployed 25-year-old Coral Springs party bro looks like he just stepped off the assembly line of a guido factory. Gauges in each ear, an off-centered chin piercing, and shaved head accent his Italian complexion.
"You either love me or hate me," Crapella says. "I'm a good character. I'm a good face for reality TV."
And that's his ambition.
Earlier this month, Crapella uploaded a nine-minute audition tape that he hopes will land him a spot on the upcoming 28th season of MTV's Real World. In the video, Crapella is at once revolting and endearing. He shows off his fridge that's stocked with a few slices of cheese, some milk, condiments, and a dozen bottles of Yuengling. Then, true to form, he drops trou and strides through a dark parking lot wearing only a Dwyane Wade jersey to ring in the Miami Heat's 2012 championship.
But beyond these antics is a worried and ambitious byproduct of middle-class dysfunction. "My life has been all ups and downs," he says. "MTV might be my last shot, honestly."
For Crapella, a spot on the iconic reality show is a ticket out of a contorted life that's dealt him some severe blows. His dad was sentenced to 15 years for racketeering when Crapella was just a kid. Asked if Italian heritage and a dad in the clink for racketeering means Mafia, Crapella laughs, then says, "That's a word the government made up to make Italians look bad."
After making it out of high school in Plantation, Crapella went to a community college in Gainesville, where he studied graphic design and advertising. But there was a problem: He arrived when the Gators won both the NCAA basketball tournament and the BCS National Championship football game in a single year.
"I don't even remember those two years," he says. "I would wake up and there was either weed sitting there or beers sitting there. I did so much crazy shit up there, way more than just getting naked and streaking."