Hello, Readers. Welcome to a late recap of the most boring season in the history of the Bachelor franchise . . . ever. The reason that this post is late is not because I was forced into some Rip Van Winkle-esque catatonic slumber while watching the show; although after trudging through the show this week I can see how that assumption might follow.
Some Guy took a quick business trip to The Big Apple on Monday and Tuesday and my ability to watch the show was hampered by the French models staying in my hotel for Fashion Week. Well, not actually, but the thoughts going through my head about the French models staying in my hotel for Fashion Week had a significant impact on my desire to write.
This week’s shout out goes to my good friend Erika who was nice enough to use her clout to set me up in the Rainman Suite at the Hotel on Rivington in Manhattan. I’m always pressed for time and space when I head to the East Coast and having a swanky place to stay certainly made my absence from my beloved Austin more bearable. Thanks again.
Also, the Bonus Post I promised is still in the works with my goal to get it posted next week. That subject matter ties in (coincidentally) with the incredibly “diverse” feedback I’ve been receiving from a lot of you concerning my new profile picture. Yes, it’s a bit formal for Some Guy, but I thought it would be nice to mix things up a bit. Yes, I’ve “trimmed down a bit” as well. All of that indiscriminate skirt chasing and curtailing my Lone Star consumption has paid off. Granted, the Special Lady Friend won’t like that little joke, but she’s still riding the wave of Valentine’s Day surprises, so I’ll print that anyway. With that out of the way, let’s get to it.
Ben arrives in Belize and apparently purchases a host of striped tank tops from some local 10 year old boys in lieu of his earth toned v-necks. He then took those tank tops and washed them in hot water shrinking them to a point of ridiculousness that will likely remain unmatched on this show for some time. One of them even had a tiny little pocket on the front of it. He looked like he should have been marching through the Castro in with Harvey Milk for crying out loud.
Before we’re treated to the tank top display we learn that the six remaining women have Flipcammed their way to the Coco Beach Resort where they’ll enjoy the possibility of maybe earning a potential home town date with their sort of boyfriend and maybe possible fiancé slash soon-to-be potential husband contingent upon the tacit approval of their fathers and the stars in every galaxy within sight of the Hubble Telescope lining up perfectly. How do we get there, you ask? I’ll tell you.
After exiting their Buddy Holly plane, the women sufficiently ooh and ahh the resort grounds before the linen-clad Chris Harrison arrives to address the “pressure” created by their free trip to a five star resort while on vacation from the monotony of their real lives where they will all garner some sort of notoriety—albeit undeserved—and eventually attempt to turn that notoriety into free money after getting home from their free trip. Pressure indeed. The only pressure I felt was the pressure created by my third Lone Star on my bladder.
Four roses, two one-on-one dates, and one group date will determine the home town roster this week and the only Safety Rose will be awarded on the much maligned group date this week. Harrison drops the date card and heads to the windsurfing tent down the beach after dropping word with his intern that he’s not to be bothered until it’s time for Ben to drop the hammer.
"Two halves make a whole. Ben," the date card reads and we learn that Lindzi gets first one on one date. Nicki cries about it and Lindzi puts on more eye liner in anticipation of hanging out in Ben’s hole. Nicki thinks it's "tough" to sit around and wait for love or whatever. In light of the monopolization of all of the eye liner and mascara in the house, the remaining girls are left with no alternative but to put on their bikinis and wallow in their sadness by the pool. Tough, indeed. It became apparent to me throughout the course of this show that “tough” equates to “bored” and I was confused as to why that seemingly obvious distinction was lost on the girls.
At any rate, Ben shows up in one of the aforementioned tiny striped tank tops with a pocket on the front. That was clearly a Garanimals shirt and I wondered if the lion on the tag had a matching lion on the swimsuit. Stunned by his choice of attire, no one gets up to greet Ben and he spirits Lindzi—who looked great by the way—off to see a big giant hole. When I heard that, I assumed they were going to meet Jake Pavelka, but that’s not important right now.
Oddly enough, Emily compares Ben to a delicious piece of cheese cake. “You’ve got the first half right,” I said into my half empty beer bottle.
Ben and Lindzi take an uneventful and oddly quiet Bachelor-copter ride. They "incredible" each other and “incredible” the cameraman in the one-on-one booth before arriving at their destination: "The Blue Hole." At this point in these dates there are usually a lot more metaphors about the dates and their symbolic links to relationships. You know what I mean: Climbing is like struggling in a relationship. Falling is like falling in love. Bending over is like . . . well, you get the idea. Despite this well-established Bachelor pattern, there was a severe lack of metaphoring going on here. If there was any good time for a bachelor metaphor it was on this date now. What better summarizes this show than jumping blindly into a huge wet hole? Personally, I felt slighted.
As the Bachelor-copter executes a perfect hover maneuver over the hole thingy we see Lindzi, post ocean splash, without any bronzer and very little eye makeup. Man, that water must have been really salty to corrode its way through that varnish. She literally looked like a different person. My guess is that she's been bronzed and highlighted for purposes of the show. She's a pretty girl (one of the prettiest this season) and it was nice to see her without the mask on. I was glad to see what I saw. After all, she's not John Merrick or Rocky Dennis. Ironically, what she's covering up is actually more attractive than the layers of plaster over it.
I pictured an army of internationally respected curators with tiny, delicate tools peeling off the bronzer layer by layer as if restoring rare Renaissance artwork covered beneath layers upon layers of paint and grime.
Back over the hole, Ben pretends he's not scared as they hover and kiss. The last time Ben got that much action while hovering over a vacant abyss was when he took Ashley out to dinner in Tahiti. They over exaggerate the "danger" involved in the jump and finally get to the "just like in a relationship" and "he's worth the fall" metaphors. As expected, the entire thing is anticlimactic. There was a huge up side, however. Thankfully, he doesn't put on the tank top again.
After a jump from that height I'm sure Lindzi's ob/gyn would recommend not having sex for at least a week. For Ben's sake, let's hope her dentist doesn't feel the same way.
In an homage to the previous color of her skin, Lindzi dons a pretty coral dress and attempts to compliment it with frosted lipstick. Even I know that's a horrible choice. Still, she looked flattering and her color scheme complimented Ben's bold choice of black linen pants and a black linen shirt to match. They whisper a bunch for some reason but manage to make it to the dinner table for some forced conversation and dinnertime chit chat.
Granted, she'll make the top three which translates into strong feelings and another trip to the Blue Hole--IF you know what I mean. However, I wasn't feeling the chemistry. In fact,that last time I was that bored was likely in my high school chemistry class. She almost choked on "I see a future" when they were talking about meeting her family. Odd, I thought.
Knock,knock. The Second One-on-One Date Card arrives. Rachel reads. She's hot, by the way and she seemed cool. I'm still at a loss how she got booted before Nicki. As much as I'll root for a fellow Texan, I'm still baffled by that one.
"Emily, Do you Belize in Love?" the card not-so-cleverly reads. I found myself Belizing that they should fire the person who wrote that, but then I paused under the weight of the realization that it might very well have been Harrison's idea. Perish the thought of his departure.
Upon hearing that her arch enemy Emily will be spending a boring afternoon with Ben that she's likely to ruin anyway, Courtney gets bent out of shape and pretends not to care. She cries a bit proving there might be more than self importance, hollow thoughts, and competitive feelings lurking behind that fake lip. I was encouraged, but not convinced.
Back on the date, Lindzi does a 180 degree turn from the likes of Ali and Ashley and actually pronounces the letter "T" in "Im-porT-TanT." She caps that off with some leap of faith nonsense. And begrudgingly admits that she's "falling for him" but avoids the "L" word like she avoids a lack of bronzer. I like her but the entire date was dry. They finish boring us (and apparently each other) by writing some fairy tale on a torn napkin and placing it in a bottle so that a rare tropical turtle can mistake it for food and choke to death before being devoured by sharks. Stupid.
On an interesting note, I noticed that she's left handed, like Some Guy. I knew I liked her. There's always sunshine after the darkness, isn't there? Let's just hope their children are not subjected to this footage years from now. I can hear it now. "Why was mommy orange back then, Daddy?" "Did she have liver problems associated with acute alcoholism like Aunt Courtney?"
Second One-on-One Date
Emily, mulls around in her royal blue swimsuit cover up with what looked like a bird coming out of the back of it. She takes a long, lonely plane ride. "We" had a rocky week," she tells us. Translation: "I" went a bit nuts and projected it on to Ben. The plane circles above Ben awaiting her on some place known as "Caye Caulker" Caulk-er? But he hardly knows her.
Incidentally, I once had a construction defect case stemming (allegedly) from my client's (alleged) failure to properly seal the windows in a large commercial building. We traveled to Tennessee (Home of Kacie B.) to take the deposition of a caulking expert. A female attorney friend of mine took the lead in the examination and every time the guy said the word "caulk" it got funnier and funnier. "How much caulk is necessary?" "What if you have too much caulk? Not enough caulk?" You get the picture. It took months before she and I could talk without melting down into hysterical laughter over that deposition. It just goes to show you: too much caulk is not always a good thing. Annnyyyyyhooo. . .
Ben awaits Emily in his yellow "What Would Harrison Do" bracelet and Green v-neck. They bike ride through town, challenge the locals to a basketball game, and eat coconuts. All of this was rather uneventful save for the fact that Emily accelerated the Amazing count exponentially. It was like she had Tourette's and that was her favorite swear word. They try buying lobsters from local guy who turns out to be a poor actor. He gives Ben and Emily the bad news that Harrison has purchased all of the available lobsters in the country and they must "spontaneously" decide to go diving for lobsters of their own. Poor and unconvincing set up aside, that actually looked like a lot of fun.
Showing that she's mastered more than disease causing bacteria, Emily flaunts her vast knowledge of the Bachelor lexicon by freely and easily suing words like "magical," "connection," and "special" in her post-lobster chasing assessment of the date. In the meantime, the producers attempt to rehabilitate Courtney after coming to the realization that she's in this for the long haul. Ben is clearly not smart enough to see her for the gold digging opportunist that she readily demonstrates she is and now ABC has to deal with it.
Of course, there is nothing more redeeming than lying down amidst freshly washed, saltwater scented down comforters and high thread count Egyptian cotton sheets in order to journal about her forelorness. Courtney confides in Lindzi about suddenly feeling the sting of Ben's time with Emily despite the fact that she's been mocking the entire process for six weeks now. I'll admit that I'm a tad cynical about these things, but there was definitely a change in behavior this week. That can't be all editing.
What was more incredible was that Courtney says she wants to feel special and loved and wants a man who won't let another woman mistreat her. Dude, whatever. She doubts Ben and back pedals saying she's not ready to bring him home to meet family. "I really liked him," escapes her silicone inflated lips and we have to believe that even Courtney is conscious of past versus present tense. If the entire thing hadn't have been so contrived, I believe she actually made the most sense of anyone. She's the only one not "in love" yet, which ironically, seems unrealistic in the context of this show. Think about that for a minute.
Courtney journals. Dear Diary, Chris Harrison looked dreamy in his blue linen today. He could almost be a model, like me. Love, Courtney. P.S. (I hate Emily.)
They could just as easily given her a copy of "Are You There, God. It's Me, Margaret" or "Superfudge" and made that equally as convincing. Of course, "Where the Red Fern Grows" would have been pushing it. There are some big words in that story. Back to the Emily date.
In what was undoubtedly a forced, flop of a date, Ben and Emily hit the Lazy Lizard Beach Bar with the ABC extras and staff family members along for the free vacation. That segment was edited down to about 20 seconds, proving to me that it was far too ridiculous to include on the show. Ben and Emily have a "superfun day" conversation and the set up of the "who will be sent home, Emily or Courtney" drama is almost complete. Coming full circle, Emily finally owns the time she lost with Ben by obsessing about Courtney. It's amazing what a lot of sleep and a lack of wine can do for a woman's sanity, isn't it? Ben seemed relieved but was probably jumping through the hoops knowing her ass had a one way ticket on a fishing boat home in just a few hours. They toast and kiss. Both were forced. In denial, Emily tells us that she's "kind of on top of the world." Actually, she "kind of" close to the middle of the world but who needs details when love is in the air (possibly)?
Knock, knock. The Next One-on-One Date Card arrives and Lindzi does the honors. "Courtney, Let's take the next steps in our relationship," it reads. She gloats obnoxiously thereby eliminating all sympathy she's gained with the help of clever editing and her fake journal over the past hour. Sigh...
Kacie B. drops a "f*cking b*tch" on her, which I found incredibly attractive. You have to love a lady, don't you? Her black widow comparison was poor, however. Black widows kill their mates. They don't piss off the other black widows by gloating in their faces before going skinny dipping behind their backs. Whatever. I think we all know what she wanted to say. God bless her administrative assisting little heart.
We cut next to a seemingly disenchanted Courtney wondering if the "magic" that's been causing her to poontang around with Ben for the past few weeks is still there. She's not as connected to him, she complains. Look, I'm far from an expert, but I'll give it a shot. Translation: His junk was small when we skinny dipped and he probably can't help my career anymore now that I've been on the cover of People and OK Magazine. This show is the Memphis Belle and it's time to bail out.
Ben grabs Courtney for their date and the head to Lamani. At least I believe that was the name of island; however, it could have been the material that Courtney's upper lip is made out of or the substance that coats Lindzi's face on a daily basis. I was too drunk to make the distinction.
Ben and Courtney go on a hike in woods with picnic basket in hand and Ben talks a lot. She's clearly over it. Girls like her lose interest if their asses are not being actively and indefinitely kissed at regular intervals.
They do some Mayan temple walking until eventually coming to a giant temple. "Here come the metaphors," I said aloud. It all seemed wasted on Courtney, didn't it? Just as I was scoffing at Courtney for not seeing the whole thing through, she impressed me yet again with her ability to manipulate the opposite sex. She tells Ben that she's the only one not "in love." She gives him the "I'm not ready speech" and basically dares him not to take her on the home town. She's lost the spark, you see, and it's just a shame that Ben wasn't more attentive. What ever can be done? Then, she shuts up, pours herself--check that--has Ben pour her a class of cold chardonnay, and sips it knowingly as Ben again proceeds to suck up to her like UCLA freshmen co-eds at a Chris Harrison Assistant interview. If they would have stayed there any longer she would have had him feeding her grapes and apologizing for the heat. She's good. Very good.
Nicki gets some camera time in preparation for being the New York Giants of this season and rallying to make the home town dates despite being the least attractive remaining girl. She "right reasons" Courtney and talks with Kacie and Emily about talking to Ben yet again about Courtney's two faced behavior. Here we go again, I thought. Shockingly, the newly sober and together Emily claims to have learned her lesson. In retrospect I suppose we (and she) will file that epiphany in the "too little too late" folder.
Ben and Courtney exchange pre-packaged step climbing metaphors atop the temple. As annoyed as that made me it was incredibly rewarding to hear the word "amazing" used in the proper context. For those of you reading this who have never been to Mayan ruins, make a point to check some out on your next vacation. They really are--well, amazing. The last time I was in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico me and about 25 of my closest friends booked a day trip to see two sets of Mayan ruins and do some snorkeling at a lagoon named Xel-Ha (pronounced Shell-Ha). It was raining so hard in the morning that we had to reschedule for the afternoon run. We were all so drunk by the time we got to the first set of ruins that we opted out of the snorkeling and got loaded at a local bar. Talk about human sacrifice. I digress.
Back at the Victoria House a hypnotized Ben drops the second "Courtney and I's" date. Ben feels good about her after being outwitted atop the temple. Like an ancient Mayan temple she always has that vacant look in her eyes and the lip chewing is distracting and annoying but she's very pretty and that will likely carry her through to the final. It certainly got her through to the home towns this week.
Group Date Card. Emily reads it prior to her Swan Song. "Rachel, Nicki, Kacie, Let's sea who's family I will meat." Frankly, I thought he'd save the "meet" vs. "meat" pun for Fantasy Suite Week, but I suppose it worked in this context, albeit a bit differently. Rachel proves she's the only one to have applied sun block liberally.
In the meantime, Courtney characterized the remaining women as "vanilla," "boring," "into themselves," and "not friends." Psychiatrists refer to that as "projecting," I believe. Frankly, she slipped a bit by being so defensive and it was clear that Ben's concerns were sincere. Her saving grace proved to be that she was smart enough to back off direct comments about any single person.
Ben voices concern about her ability to connect with others. Translation: I don't want to marry a b*tch. She responds by saying that in her job--I think she's a model--that "she's the talent" and has to "make everyone feel comfortable." Actually, Blakeley has a job with that description. It also involves a bronze pole and baby oil. Let's be honest here. Courtney's job is to smile and look pretty.
Group Date Time. Ben shows up at 4 a.m. lurking around the mansion in his striped, escaped prisoner sweatshirt. In Texas that's a really good way to get yourself shot. He wakes the women invited on the group date. It's a good thing Courtney wasn't invited on that date. She prefers to be awakened like a grandfather clock...with a huge dong.
After leg shaves and armpit shaves in sink and another tank top display from Ben they hit the ocean and kill some mimosas before getting in the water with harmless nurse sharks. Ben pretends to know how to fight sharks as the guides chum the water. Rachel drops "oh f*ck me" when she sees the first shark. Easy Rachel, I thought. You'll have to get past the home town date before that happens.
Those sharks were nurse sharks, which are extremely docile. However, to be fair to Rachel from New York, she probably doesn't go diving with sharks much--perhaps in the metaphorical sense, but you know what I mean.
Some Guy has been to Cayman Islands and Mexico a few times and seen all that, including the stingrays and the other stuff that lives around reefs in shallow water. It's exhilerating to go diving in that environment and there's always someone on the boat who freaks out. On Ben's trip, it happened to be Rachel but her fear ended up working out in her favor as she monopolizes Ben's time. Granted, it wasn't exactly skinny dipping with Courtney, but Ben seemed to enjoy himself. Nicki and Kacie hated it.
Back at Belizian Cove they drink, get some alone time with Ben, and Kacie puts a giant hibiscus on the side of her head. How awkward did that thing look while she was talking to Ben? It looked more like a depiction of the Kennedy head wound in frame 313 of the Zapruder Film than a delicate accessory. I half expected to hear "back and to the left. back and to the left" when he kissed her.
Rose in hand Ben compliments all of the women and then fires a kill shot from the Grassy Knoll when he gives the Safety Rose to Kacie B. That sucks for Rachel and Nicki. As the sucking continued for Rachel and Nicki, Courtney takes her cue and spies on the date. Courtney--who's a model, I believe--characterizes Kacie as "a little girl." As bitchy as that came across, she's right. The three group daters endure an awkward silence.
For what it's worth, I would have given the rose to Rachel. She looks like a younger, healthier version of Bo Derek or a trashier (in a good way) version of Olivia Newton John. She seemed a bit insecure all season which spells "i.s.s.u.e.s." but I like her and I'd put her in the top three on the attractive scale. Then again, I don't wear skin tight tank tops with pockets on the front of them or have a silly haircut. What do I know?
After a pina colada or two and a giant glass of beer Nicki brings up the "C" word to Ben. How sick of the "we don't like Courtney" smack to you think he is? Hell, I deal with it for two hours minus commercials a week and I can't stand it. Then again, I'm not groping twenty somethings in Belize and riding around in free helicopters in my spare time. Again, what do I know?
Boat ride to Rojo Lounge. Tiki torches and candles abound but are eclipsed by a menage of Maxi dresses and spaghetti straps. Courtney drinks and makes silly faces. She's feeling good. "I'm in Belize, I have a pina colada, and it's been a relaxing day." Say what you want about her, but you can't deny that she's the only one with the right perspective on this mess. Amen.
She continues, much to the chagrin of the others. "My glass is half full. Let's lighten up. Ben is not the only guy in the world. This is not our only chance at love. We're all ready to go home in some way." Cattiness aside, I frankly haven't heard a contestant in the history of this show make that much sense. Courtney has the show in perspective and she's not afraid to say it. Solid. Right reasons, my ass. Who says models are nothing more than ego driven vixens with penchants for useful, rich men and cocaine? Well, a lot of people say that, but that's beside the point here. Courtney was right with a capital "RI".
Seeing that Courtney, if allowed to continue, would eventually pull back the curtain and reveal the real wizard, Harrison shows up early and shuts down the bar under the cloak of "Ben knows exactly what he wants to do." It's a dirty job, but Harrison is on board. Someone has to cash those fat checks and it might as well be him. God, I admire him.
Three Roses are up for grabs. Kacie B. is only one safe. Harrison drops the rules. Ben shows up in a suit with his striped tank top fashioned into a tie and pulls Courtney aside for a ridiculous conversation the was mixed with snippets of the other women wallowing in denial about what was going to happen. Courtney did squirm in her chair a bit, but managed to do enough to hang on. It went down as follows:
1. Nicki (weak)
1. Rachel (horrible choice)
That stings. Losing is one thing, but losing to your worse enemy is even worse. Courtney rubs it in a bit and I was truly turned off by her behavior. When you get to the end zone, act like you've been there. My prediction is that she's leaving in the final round. My guess is that she gets defensive and badmouths Ben on her way out the door, but we'll have to wait and see.
I actually felt bad for Rachel and Emily, especially Rachel. Both cry but depart with their dignity in tact. My prediction is that they'll both return to their lives and feel a bit ridiculous watching themselves get so upset over Ben. They'll be better off by the Women Tell All. They are both very attractive women with good heads on their shoulders and some really good stuff below the heads on their shoulders. They'll be fine.
Well, there you have it. With the Journey count at 20 and the Amazing count at a skyrocketing 56 we head to the hometown dates next week. I can't wait. Thanks again for those of you who sent me thoughtful messages about the poor timing of this post. I appreciate your patience. In a perfect world, I'd write only this for a living. Alas, I have to make a living in a less than perfect world. I hope y'all had a meaningful Valentine's Day and you enjoy the rest of your week. I'll try my best to get next episode's post up on time. In the meantime, if you need me, I'll be seeing how many things won't fit into the tiny pocket on my undersized tank tops. DP Sent with Writer. DP