Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Emotional Upheaval in Lake Tahoe, Oregon

"It's another week in paradise with me!"

There is a lot of screaming and begging in this week’s episode of The Bachelor. Oh, and crying. Lots of crying. Chris starts out by bringing the girls into the living room as usual and telling them that there will be two group dates and one individual date. But what’s this? There is no date box on the table. Why is that, you ask? Because the dates will not be taking place in Los Angeles. Everyone is flying to Lake Tahoe! The girls all scream and kick and throw their hands up in the air as if Chris has announced they’re going to the moon. The girls run upstairs to continue to scream, jump on their beds, and pack their things. Smug Stephanie tells us that she can definitely handle going to Lake Tahoe. Then she asks where it is. In Oregon? Um, no. I’m no geography expert, but even I knew that Lake Tahoe is part in California and part in Nevada, and I wasn’t one of the girls screaming in ecstasy about going there.

Over at the airport Mayo pulls up in the DeLorean to meet the girls and accompany them on “his” private jet over to Lake Tahoe. He’s telling the camera about how much more serious everything is getting now that the number of girls is getting smaller. As the limo full of girls pulls up and the girls spot Mayo, they begin cheering and applauding. Did I miss something? Did Mayo do a handstand? Demonstrate how to greet patients again, or get food in a cafeteria? No, he just stood there, but apparently this is worthy of applause. There are hugs all around and everyone boards the plane, then cheers and screams when the plane takes off. Bevin sits by the window and earns herself the nickname Sulky Bevin because amidst all of the cheering she is only concentrating on the fact that her ankle is sprained and she’ll have to sit out the athletic activities. Remember, she’s sort of athletic.

"If I try really hard, maybe I'll cry."

When the gang arrives at their Lake Tahoe suite in Oregon, what do you think happens? That’s right, they all scream. Does anyone have any eardrums left? How about Gloomy Danielle with her earache, how is all this screaming treating her? Shut up, ladies. It’s a hotel room. Mayo rolls around on the beds with the girls and tells us that he can see himself being happy with a lot of them, but it really is time to get serious. Serious – check.

Now it is time to explore Date Box #1. It’s a little tray with some poker chips on it. How cryptic. I bet they’re going water skiing! Nicole, Stephanie Kansas, Gloomy Danielle and Sulky Bevin: “Put your party dresses on and let’s see who’s feeling lucky.” I’m still guessing water skiing. Night water skiing.

Group Date #1 - Mayo Hog

The lucky girls only have a few minutes to get ready so Sulky Bevin goes into Full Sulk Mode. She shuts herself in the bathroom and bawls. Tessa goes in to listen to her complain while Amber irons her dress for her. Bevin is seriously annoying with this ankle thing. Yes it sucks to get hurt, but no one likes a huge whiny crybaby. We’ve all been there, Bevin, grow up. All the girls take on one aspect of getting Bevin ready, and what do you know – she gets ready. Bawling and complaining the entire time. Mayo is in his room wondering what the crap is taking so long. Nothing Mayo. It’s just that the producers have to decode all of Bevin’s sobbing so that they can add subtitles for us later. Isn’t that sexy? So I guess I was wrong about water skiing. They’re just going to hang out tonight, so it really was worth it for Bevin to scream and bawl for an hour instead of just shutting up, getting dressed, and sitting down. So far all they’re doing is sitting in Mayo’s room, watching the sunset and eating. Oh, and sulking – well Bevin is. She makes it very clear to anyone bothering to look in her direction that she is UN-happy. Mayo decides to play this really fun game called Name the Most Romantic Place for a Date. Nicole names Cabo. Nice. Sulky Bevin what do you think? Sniff, “I don’t know,” sniff. Aw this must be so frustrating for Bevin to have to just sit there while everyone else is just sitting there. I officially don’t like her.

"Bevin, would you care for a
slice of shut the f@$! up?"

Mayo decides it’s time to pull out the old Bedside Manner and take Sulky Bevin into the corner to bawl on his shoulder. It turns out she’s wearing heels and no splint and didn’t even bring her crutches. Nice injury. The other girls are not pleased with how Sulky Bevin is milking her boo boo. I personally don’t understand why she would want to display her most negative self in this situation. This should be a time for her to show that she can be cheerful and fun even in adversity. But no, she’s decided to take the exact opposite track and play the wounded animal. Well, if Mayo is the rescuing type, he’s found himself a project. Puke. Mayo says not to worry, that this is how life is – when someone gets hurt, others help. Bevin sobs, “This is not who I am to be hurt like this.” Huh? First of all, that’s a stupid statement. It’s like saying, “This is not who I am to be asleep like this.” Secondly, yes it is who you are because you haven’t risen above it, you’ve embraced it and are wallowing in it. Now please stop so we can get on with the show. Ew, here is how Mayo gets on with it: “Do you feel what I feel? Do you feel like whenever I touch you we got this electricity – this current going?” Sulky Bevin feels it too. Shocking. No pun intended. Mayo: “And trust me when I tell you that I feel more when I touch you each time.” Oh GAG. Mayo begs her to hang in there and tells the camera that he wants her to stick with it – “please, please, please.” Why? There aren’t enough other girls clawing over you? You have to hang on to Misery Incarnate? Icky awkward kissing while Sulky Bevin continues to sniffle. When they finally rejoin the rest of the party, Bevin just shoves her fingers in her mouth and continues to sulk, but tells the camera that the other girls were really jealous. Yeah, they were not pleased. Neither am I. Sulky Bevin hopes that the others won’t stab her in the back. Sniff, sniff.

Sulky Bevin has more than one problem in this picture.

For the second part of this date, the group is going to play some craps. Uh oh, this may mean Sulky Bevin has to stand up, which may mean more bawling. Please spare me. When Sulky Bevin says “Hard eight for Mayo,” Mayo says, “Did you say heartache for Mayo?” Hardy har har, this one’s a pistol.

Up in the room, Date Box #2 arrives, which is just another envelope on another silver tray. Tessa, Kate, Tina, Smug Stephanie: “Let’s go play in the snow. Love, Mayo.” Amber almost has an out-of-body experience because this means she gets the one-on-one date. Smug Stephanie is so obviously miffed it’s hilarious.

Back at craps, Mayo decides it’s time for alone time with Stephanie Kansas. Just as he’s pulling her away Bevin falls to the floor screaming, “My ankle!” Just kidding, but she may as well have. I could see the tears welling up in her eyes again. Stephanie Kansas says this is getting stressful for her because it feels like everything is getting more serious and it’s really draining. Mayo tells her she’s amazing and that he hopes he’ll get to meet her family. Wow, a hometown date? That’s still a couple of episodes off. I guess Stephanie Kansas can relax for a while… or can she? Tricky Mayo! Gloomy Danielle comes over to interrupt the conversation for some alone time of her own. Oh good, I was getting weary of all this crying; I’m glad Danielle is here so we can talk about death. Mayo tells Gloomy Danielle that he impressed with her strength and she gushes to him about how great she feels in his presence and what a gentleman he is. They have a really weird kiss. He does not look like a good kisser at all – yuck.

"Wait. My nose feels funny."

It’s time to announce the Special Quality Time and I thought Mayo would pick Nicole since he’s chatted up every other girl except for her. But he chooses Sulky Bevin so he can feel like a hero for a little while longer. The other girls are not happy – again. Neither am I – again. Mayo carries Sulky Bevin down the hall to his room and all that’s missing is his Navy hat so that she can grab it and put it on her head. That would actually be great because that is the end of the movie so maybe it could be the end of The Bachelor and the end of my suffering. But no such luck. They sit on Mayo’s couch where Mayo announces that he’s always been a nerd. You know, he used to participate in science fairs and all that geeky stuff. Sulky Bevin says she’s a nerd, too. Interesting. I don’t know if I would have described Mayo as a nerd, but the words “special needs” keep coming to my mind whenever he is doing or saying anything. P.S., he’s also always had the pipe dream of being an astronaut because he hasn’t overachieved quite enough just yet. Please don’t do the world any more favors Mayo. Bevin starts to sulk again and Mayo begs her again to hang in there. Mayo tells Sulky Bevin that they’re “real” and wants to know where she’ll be in a year if he’s in Hawaii. She of course says Hawaii. Don’t be too hard to get there, Bevin. Mayo says Bevin is his sanctuary. Oh give it a rest, seriously. We’ve reached idiot saturation for the evening. Mercifully the date is over and it’s time for commercial.

Group Date #2 - Complaint Booth

Group Date #2 is snow skiing. Mayo brilliantly predicts that this date will be different than the first one – mostly because it won’t be a session of babysitting bawling Sulky Bevin. I added that last part. Smug Stephanie is excited because it’s her birthday and she and Mayo have a super-secret connection that none of the other girls are aware of. They’re a team – and someone is continuing her delusions of grandeur. Kate is not excited because she’s never skied and she doesn’t like snow. I’m with her on not liking snow, but skiing is really fun. It’s one of those odd paradoxes of the universe. So guess who’s teaching the girls how to ski… that’s right, it’s Mayo – the all-time expert on everything. They are so lucky!

"You see ladies, this is called snow.
And that there is a tree. What I'm doing is walking."

From the looks of things, none of these girls know how to ski, but they are all doing okay except for Kate who can barely stay on her feet. I think Tessa has skied before because she invites Mayo to ride on the back of her skis while she goes down the hill and this does not seem like the proposal of a first-timer. Next the girls take turns lodging complaints to Mayo about the whole Bachelor situation. Tessa says there’s a lot of tension in the air and that it’s hard to be friends with the other girls Mayo is dating. Mayo begs her not to give up and to stick with it. He says he feels a strong connection with her. Does any of that sound familiar?

Quick flash over to the hotel room where Nicole is asking Amber if she’s excited for her solo date with Mayo. Amber is excited but feels awkward. She likes Mayo a lot, but is almost nauseous because she doesn’t know how he feels about her. Nicole assesses that Amber is “right around the corner from falling in love” with Mayo. Oh Amber, cross over to the other side of the street – quick!

Back at Complaint Central, Smug Stephanie confessionals that she will not hesitate to throw another girl under the bus if she is standing in the way of Smug Stephanie getting Mayo. To prove this, she sits Mayo down and proceeds to tell him that “some of the girls” aren’t right for him because they’re too young, can’t be by themselves, and have to always be the center of attention. She tells the camera that she is talking about Amber. That’s funny; I thought she was describing herself. Next she tells Mayo that all the girls are annoyed because he’s running around kissing everybody. Mayo’s like, “Uh, well, all I’m trying to do is be a gentleman and establish, uh, connections… and jealousy is a rampant beast.” A rampant beast? That’s very dramatic Mayo. The rampant beast may be eating your future wife! Smug Stephanie assures him that she is fine because she knew what she was getting into.

Now Kate’s complaint number is called and she rides up the ski slope in a gondola with Mayo. She tells him that everyone is aware of his position, but they’re annoyed. She also says that Amber reported that Mayo tried to kiss her but she turned her head. Mayo is all indignant because that never happened. Kate says the girls from the date last night are mad because Sulky Bevin hogged all of Mayo’s attention. She concludes saying that Smug Stephanie has just molded herself into what she thinks Mayo wants and she’s not the kind of girl you’d take home to meet your parents. Remember a few seasons back when one of the girls was actually a friend of the Bachelor’s and she was there to be an informant? That’s what Kate is reminding me of right now. She is BLABBING.

It’s time to bestow Special Quality Time on some lucky girl and that girl today is… Tina! That figures. She’s been standing in the Complaint Line all day and hasn’t had a chance yet to voice her frustrations. Smug Stephanie is super confused because she was sure that being the birthday girl would assure her the gift of Special Quality Time. She spends the rest of the day looking out the window in tearful disquietude. When Tessa and Kate ask what she’s doing she says she’s looking out the window because it’s just so incredibly beautiful. Kate’s not buying it and her face is priceless.

Kate tells Amber that Smug Stephanie is obsessed with Mayo. Amber says, “Do you think she loves him?” Kate says, “No, I think she’s crazy.” Ha!

Back out on the slopes, Tina’s complaint session is on. She says (again!) that she’s not competitive and feels so uncomfortable in this situation. Mayo tells her (again!) that he really likes her and she’s sexy. He congratulates her on doing a really good job. That’s just weird. I’ve never been congratulated on doing a good job dating. But I’ve never been on The Bachelor, so what do I know?

Inside Amber is frazzled trying to get ready for her one-on-one date. What can I eat so my breath won’t smell like onions? Do you think black pants are too fancy? Should I wear jeans and cute heels? Cute shirt? Cute shoes? Jacket? Scarf? Gloves? Beanie? Amber, no one cares.

On top of the mountain Tina and Mayo sit down at a table to eat and we learn that Tina thinks she is on Joe Millionaire instead of The Bachelor. She asks Mayo if he’s high maintenance, what with his expensive car and yacht. Mayo tells Tina what everyone on earth knows except for her, and that is that ABC has provided him with those things and they have nothing to do with real life.

"You mean you don't really live on the yacht?"

Tina says she doesn’t care what her future husband does for a living as long as they “get” each other. Thanks Tina, that’s deep. Mayo says his time with Tina is “just what the doctor ordered.” I say this whole segment is an enormous waste of time. Next!

Individual Date - Clearing the Air

It looks like Amber managed to choose something to wear and she is looking forward to some uninterrupted time with Mayo. They head over to a little bed and breakfast where they have been provided with a room (no Tina, this isn’t Mayo’s own cabin), and they get to lounge in front of a roaring fire. Over fondue Amber reveals her porta-wife status: she can teach anywhere. I must pause for a moment and point out that the last two Bachelor winners were teachers and the one before that was a nurse (all porta-wives) so Amber’s teacher status is huge point in her favor. Mayo starts hinting around that there have been some rumors flying and that some of the girls may have been questioning his intentions. Amber says she’s never questioned his intentions and that she’ll tell him whatever he wants to know. Mayo is still worried. There’s a lot of lying and cattiness going on. Amber rubs her acrylic nails all over Mayo’s knee and assures him she is here for the “right reasons” – whatever those could possibly be. Mayo appreciates her candidness, but I wish he would have said “candor,” that would have been much more eloquent. While feeding each other cake, I barf and Mayo finally goes in for a kiss from Amber. And it’s into the hot tub for a whole lot more awkward kissing. Mayo doesn’t want to kiss as much as he wants to talk about the romance of the situation. Then he remembers something that will make it even more romantic. Oh gee, I wonder what he could possibly mean! Amber is genuinely baffled when he jumps out of the hot tub, but she is so relieved when he comes back with the rose. What a surprise! I keep noticing that these girls are always wearing ginormous earrings with their bathing suits – even at the mud spa.

"Your earrings are so romantic, Amber."

Pre-Rose-Ceremony party time! The girls all rehash yet once again just how emotional this is all getting. Smug Stephanie confessionals that it is in high pressure situations like this that she performs her best and rises to the top and tonight will be no different, so there. Mayo presents himself and the last ditch efforts begin.

"I'm here, lucky ladies. Please don't leave!"

Kate apologizes to Mayo for her verbal vomit and he tells her he likes that she speaks what’s on her mind and that she owns it. Smug Stephanie is wearing the loincloth she considered wearing on her first single date with Mayo and she informs the other girls that she looks so hot that she is 90% sure she’s getting a rose. Last time she was 95% sure, so her confidence is dwindling. P.S. – real boobs don’t stand up by themselves. Kate says that the loincloth isn’t even appropriate to wear to a strip club. Ha – again! I like Kate’s digs on Smug Stephanie. Kate then does an imitation of Smug Stephanie taking a sip of her drink looking like a porn star. This time Smug Stephanie sees the whole thing from upstairs and she ain’t happy. Now Smug Stephanie takes Mayo aside and her boobs tell him once again that Amber isn’t the right girl for him. Sulky Bevin pulls Mayo away and they both say how much they’ve missed each other and how excited they are to see each other. Then they kiss again. Ech. Kate tells Bevin that there are a couple of girls in the house who shouldn’t trust her. Hmm. Call me crazy, but I’m going to guess Smug Stephanie and Amber. Kate confirms my theory by telling Amber that Tina said she heard that Amber and Mayo almost had sex last night. Tina? Um, Kate you might want to pin your gossip on someone less… well, silent. No one is going to believe that Tina actually spoke. Amber runs away to bawl and she bawls to the camera that she’s putting herself on the line, but the girls are always talking behind her back. Amber runs straight to Mayo to warn him about the rumors. Welcome to the Babysitters Club, ladies and gentlemen. Immaturity encouraged. Tessa takes Mayo outside for her usual song and dance about how much she likes him, but how strange she feels in the situation. Her main point tonight is that some other girls are getting really strong feelings really quickly and that she takes longer to develop those types of feelings. Mayo resorts once again to begging her to stick it out. Tessa says something very smart which is that if Mayo already knows what he wants, she doesn’t want to get hurt. He says okay. This is too funny. I’ve never seen any Bachelor begging so many girls not to give up and quit the show. And he knows they all have to go eventually, so they’re just going to be more upset in the long run after he’s begged them each individually to stay. At long last Chris comes in tapping his glass so let’s get this over with.

Tonight’s roses are very predictable. Remember, Amber already got a rose on her date. Mayo says this is so difficult and he respects them all, but he’s relying on his heart tonight because he listened to it with his stethoscope. Here’s how it goes: Tessa (I keep waiting for her to refuse the rose. That would be great!), Gloomy Danielle, Sulky Bevin (astonishing), Tina (big mouth gossip), and guess what… this is the final rose tonight. When you’re ready… Stephanie Kansas, congratulations!

Let’s have a look at the reject speeches. Kate says she came here to find true love and she wishes that things could have worked out between her and Mayo, but oh well. Personally I think she just wanted to stay so that she could continue to stir things up among the girls. Nicole is dumbfounded and can’t believe her ears. She was straightforward and true and here she is without a rose. Where did she go wrong? She then breaks down sobbing. Oh Nicole, there are much better guys, trust me. There are even guys out there who like girls. Smug Stephanie is completely shocked. She thought she and Mayo had something totally special. She wanted it. She believed in it. And it’s all gone. She says that she sold someone out to Mayo and that she’s afraid he misread her intentions. Now she’s going home because of stupid little jealous girls, which is the story of her life. But she wants Mayo to be happy, so she’ll let him go be happy. How gracious of you, Smug Stephanie. Now go get dressed.

Dropped on Request

Mayo makes the same toast he makes every week – to true love. Later, loser.

It looks like next week Sulky Bevin hogs another group date and Mayo borrows some jewelry for a spectacular one-on-one date. Can’t wait!

What do you think? What is up with Sulky Bevin – does it get any more annoying than her? With the meanest girls gone, who will provide our drama?

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