You guys, The Bachelor started tonight! It’s been on for 55 minutes and I’m all meh, whatever on this season. No, I did not make a New Years resolution to stop watching garbage and get some GD culture. Nope, I didn’t have to sell all three of our TVs to buy my son 8,385 Star Wars toys and what was apparently the ONLY Sasha Banks action figure IN THE ENTIRE WORLD. (It had to be otherwise I cannot justify the price. It had to be, okay?) No, someone did not dare me to not watch MY MOST FAVORITE TV SHOW IN THE WORLD! I’m just not, okay?
But let’s be honest. I’m going to watch it. Eventually. The Earth will not spin off its axis. Just chill.
But I’m not committing to blogging about this season. I know! SAD! I know you (Jenn) looked forward to my recaps 5-7 days after the episode aired. Want to write a letter of complaint? Address it to this guy:
He’s kind of gross, right? Like makes you feel like you need to pull your collar up a little closer to your neck an maybe Purell your eyeballs.
Sorry, Ari, I’m just not that into you.
It’s not me, it’s you.
It’s your hair.
And that weirdo half-smile like you didn’t know it was time to take a photo even though you’re staring RIGHT INTO THE BELLY OF A CAMERA!
And the fact that I didn’t like you 5 years ago when you were vying for dum dum Emily (whom I also did not like) and she surprised dumped you and she was all like, “I don’t know! It’s so hard to choose between two sketchy weirdos but I think the other guy has rich parents and maybe even a real job” and you were all like, “yeah, no, totally cool. Don’t explain. I’ll be the Bachelor 4 3/4 years after everyone forgets about me. Later!”
But I wish she picked you and you lived happily ever after so we weren’t stuck looking at your hair and hearing about how you’re a race car driver (like that’s a THING!) for the next 16 weeks.
Also, Ryder from the Paw Patrol called and wants his hair style back!
Look, Ari! He too is a race car driver! Maybe we’ll see him as the Bachelor in 2037!
Also, I’m kind of bitter just like the rest of Bachelor Nation.
Did you not watch the last season of The Bachelorette?! Everyone worth their spray tan, gel manicures, and sew-in hair extensions (and hello! That is ALL OF US!) know Peter should have been the next Bachelor! I mean come on! A nice mid-west boy, sweet family, can hang with a baby on a kitchen floor, and might be the most beautiful man in the world NEXT TO MY HUSBAND OF COURSE!
But seriously, did we all not love Peter? Like love him so much we kind of wanted to yell BACK OFF, HO every time Rachel pulled him aside for a little one on one time?
And sure, maybe Mike Fleiss and every producer who has ever manipulated a grown-ass adult into crying in the back of a limo hated the fact that darling Peter couldn’t, wouldn’t propose to a woman he met SIX WEEKS AGO because, “this shit is cray!” (I’m paraphrasing, but that’s basically what he said) even though he really liked her and was totally willing to, you know, date her in the real world and see if they could fall in love without the Northern Lights and helicopters and maintaining a steady buzz for 63 days straight.
But God dammit, Rachel. You were NOT leaving this show without a proposal. This was not a reality show so much as a game show. You would take home the prize and maybe a fancy Bosch dishwasher and trip to Sedona. You were getting your ring! One that promised marriage! And babies! And would make your father come out of hiding and show his sad, embarrassed face on national TV! So you went with the sure thing– the creepy, hairy Miami dude even though your family was skeeved out by him and HE DID NOT GET ON THE KITCHEN FLOOR WITH A BABY!
Bryan’s all like, “Uhhhhhh I love you so much! I’ve loved you in all my past lives! I’m gonna propose to you as soon as I get out of the limo!” Rachel, you cried your fake eyelashes right off your face when Peter said he wasn’t 100% sure he could propose the NEXT DAY! I didn’t even know that was possible, but there they were right on the floor of his hotel room like caterpillars murdered by mascara. Clearly you were into the guy! Like waaaaaaaay in! But whatevs. That’s cool. 13 minutes later you’re on a mountaintop saying yes to Miami Lice when he got down on one knee with a tacky Neil Lane sparkler. Even Neil Lane was all like “Whoa! This guy? Not the super hot trainer dude?”
So yeah, even though we all wanted Peter (but secretly not really because it’s just better for all of us if the guy stays single) you cannot call bullshit on a show’s entire premise and get to be the next star of said bullshitty show. That’s showbiz!
Okay, fine! I’ll watch this season, but only because I have friends who watch it too and I don’t want to let them down. Also FOMO. But I’m not dedicating my life, my life, to recapping the season.
You will never find a happier, more hospitable, more generous me. I make gingerbread from scratch every year, each time forgetting how gross it is and deck my halls before the Thanksgiving turkey has even been ordered. Give me fake snow, LED curtain lights, and all the Candace Cameron Bure holiday vehicles. I am so in.
I come from holiday-loving stock. My parents only desire was to make sure my brother and I had a better Christmas than the previous one. Oh yes, they brought us to church where we learned all about the real “reason for the season” too, but even a magical pregnant virgin couldn’t compete with flying reindeer, misfit toys, and little elves who could build the exact same Lite Bright that was in the Toys R Us catalog. Every December 25th, my brother and I woke up to a living room filled with Rock Em Sock Em Robots, Legos, and Barbie’s Dream Gated Community. Didn’t matter that some of the toys had Kmart price tags on them or that Santa had the exact same chicken scratch as our mom. What mattered was the cookies left on the mantle had been eaten and the tuft of stuffing near the front door indicated Rudolph was almost positively definitely inside our house.
It was pure magic.
Now I am the parent of a four year-old who is just beginning to understand the magic of holiday fallacies. And because I’m me, we totally bought into the whole Elf on the Shelf deal last year. If you’re familiar, the Elf comes to stay with your family sometime between Thanksgiving and Christmas and returns home to the North Pole every night to give Santa a rundown on the day’s activities. The next morning the child delights in finding their elf residing in a new spot around your home.
Pure magic, right?
Well, sort of.
As it turns out the little imp is rather contentious. A lot of people despise this thing. Like hate it’s stupid, stuffed, little guts.
I of course am not one of those people. I revere our elf almost as much as our son does. When she made her return trip Thanksgiving morning, my son could barely hold it together. He woke us up, nearly in tears, and dragged us to the living room where I was certain he’d point out our dead cat (she’s been tormenting the dog for years) or the ol’ bearded one himself ass up in the fireplace. But nope. He pointed to the dining room table where the rosy cheeked “Elfalina” sat perched on a Mason jar.
“She came back,” he whispered.
Do you not see thePURE MAGIC here???
Well, magic mixed with animosity. For some reason people aren’t digging a stuffed doll that not only airs your dirty laundry, but tells Santa it took you six days to fold it. Perhaps you’ve heard the hateful allegations lobbed against elves. Perhaps you’ve been deterred from inviting your very own shelf-sitter into your home. But wait! These are also holiday fallacies (the bad kind) and hold as much water as a tree stand from a dollar store. (Pro Tip: don’t buy a tree stand from a dollar store.)
Fallacy: It’s Too Much Work
Fact: I have a full time job, a demanding kid, and a DVR full of Bravo television that isn’t going to lay on the couch, moderately buzzed, and watch itself! I’m super lazy and yet, I still manage to muster the physical strength to pick up a three ounce doll and move it from a houseplant to behind a canister of coffee.
Yes, I’ve seen the Pinterest pages and Instagram accounts dedicated to the elite elf movers and shakers. There’s one riding away in a bouquet of candy cane colored hot air balloons! Oh look! There’s an elf who was up all night baking and decorating miniature sugar cookies! Oh har har, your neighbor’s elf poops Hershey Kisses. So cute. Hey man, whatever works because your the one setting expectations. Maybe your elf never leaves her perch. Maybe the elf prefers to communicate through Instagram posts. Your elf, your rules.
Fallacy: It’s Creepy
Fact: If your elf is creepy, stop right now, get the box it came in, and READ IT! Does it say Chuckie on the Shelf? Little Girl from The Ring on the Shelf? High-Profile Man in Hollywood on the Shelf? Because our elf is a straight up stuffed, side-eye-giving toy with a cute backstory. If you’re worried about the creepiness factor, have your elf debut with a small offering for your child. Works like a charm. Santa’s been pulling that schtick for years.
Fallacy: It’s an Invasion of Privacy
Fact: “I don’t want that thing watching us!” They shriek. “What message is it sending to our kids?” I heard those arguments from a mom who constantly shares photos of her toddler daughter in the bath and her son’s potty training progress with her 649 Facebook friends. I’m pretty sure they didn’t sign a release.
First, the elf isn’t really watching you. (SEE: Stuffed toy.) The same can’t be said for the roly poly dude who has built an empire on voyeurism, bribery, and some light home invasion. You know, that guy who sees you when you’re sleeping and knows when you’re awake? Hello, stalker! They learned it from watching him!
Fallacy: It’s Sending the Wrong Message
Fact: Sorry, what message are we talking about? The one where you’re supposed to be good for goodness sake? Again, our boy Santa is already perpetrating that myth. And really, what’s wrong with asking your kids to clean up their mess, eat a vegetable, and maybe not moon their grandparents when you’re Facetiming? Trust me, having a little imp to tag in once in awhile is pretty awesome.
See? The Elf on the Shelf is basically like having a free au pair your kids are sort of afraid of. At least for the month of December. Now if you’ll excuse me I need to figure out how to make a zipline from my son’s bedroom door the Christmas tree. Pure magic.
The Scene: A nice couple are hosting Thanksgiving for nine of their closest friends. The girl, a vegetarian in her 40’s, is enjoying the beautiful fall morning while walking her dog, Puppy. She calls her mother to wish her a happy Thanksgiving.
GIRL: Hi, Mommy! Happy Thanksgiving!
MOM: Where are you? It sounds loud! Is that your oven???
GIRL: I’m taking a walk.
MOM: WHO IS WATCHING THE TURKEY?
GIRL: Watching the turkey do what?
MOM: YOU NEED TO BASTE THAT BIRD! BASTE THAT BIRD RIGHT NOW! DO NOT LET THAT BIRD BURN!
GIRL: It’s not even in the oven!
MOM: IT’S NOT IN THE OVEN??????????? WHY IS IT NOT IN THE OVEN????? WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?
GIRL: We’re not eating for seven hours!
MOM: THAT IS NOT ENOUGH TIME! YOU ARE RUINING THANKSGIVING!
GIRL: I have an oven bag!
MOM: JUST BECAUSE YOU ARE A VEGAN DOESN’T MEAN YOUR FRIENDS DON’T EXPECT TO EAT TURKEY ON THANKSGIVING!
GIRL: I’m vegetarian, not vegan! They will have turkey! The butcher said–
GIRL: I HAVE AN OVEN BAG!
MOM: GO HOME!!! GO HOME RIGHT NOW AND FIX THIS!
If you have a mom who used to/currently hosts Thanksgiving and you are hosting Thanksgiving, this probably sounds familiar. Thanksgiving was my mom’s jam and if she was going to do up the whole damn shebang from (literally) soup to nuts, for anywhere from 25-693 people then so must we all. It was a big production. Like several god damn days worth of producing.
I did not like Thanksgiving. Don’t get me wrong– I loved the food. I just didn’t love the lead up.
Polish the damn silver!
Get the good dishes out!
Get the leaf for the table!
Get another leaf for the table!
Peel 286 potatoes and then peel 925 more BECAUSE WE NEED ALL THE POTATOES!
Cut 837 celery stalks!
CLEAN, MOTHER ‘EFFERS, CLEAN!
Set the table!
Now set the table with the knives ON THE CORRECT SIDE!
Get the serving dishes!
DO NOT TOUCH THE DISHES!
Stash 83 pies in the laundry room! NO ONE TOUCH THE DAMN PIES! Don’t even look at the pies!
ARE YOU WATCHING A PARADE??? REALLY? TODAY OF ALL GOD DAMN DAYS????
It was madness! Madness, I tell you! My mom did all the food! There was no “bring a dish to share.” There was no order up some pies from Costco. THERE WAS NO COSTCO! If my mom was around for the first Thanksgiving there would be NO MORE THANKSGIVINGS. The pilgrims would have been like, “Well, that sucked. Great food, but holy stress, man! Next year it’s Cracker Barrel.”
And then there were the vegetables and all the apps.That celery wasn’t going to cut itself! My mom had cut all the vegetables by hand. THERE WERE NO PRE-CUT, PRE-WASHED VEGETABLES. (I would have helped, but my parents didn’t let me use sharp objects until I was twenty-seven years old.)
And then there was the turkey. Jesus God let’s talk turkey. The biggest turkey had to be purchased (months? years?) in advance. A giant, frozen ball of giblets and neck bones soon-to-be-shoved full of twenty-eight pounds of stuffing and salmonella. (They also didn’t have the internet and Alton Brown to warn you about pre-stuffing your turkey.)
The turkey was the star of the show, but it was also the biggest asshole. What a freakin’ diva that thing was. Was there ever a turkey shortage in the past 4 decades? Because it felt like just getting one home and into the freezer was a major coup. And then getting it out of the freezer and into the refrigerator for it to properly thaw had to happen at the EXACT RIGHT MOMENT or you’d be eating ice cold bird or worse– Chinese food BECAUSE YOU TOTALLY RUINED THANKSGIVING! Like me! Yes, the thawing the turkey was a big, freakin’ deal. You had to subtract thirty-eight hours from when you wanted it on your table, divide it by nineteen, multiply it by eleven, half it six times, and then add four minutes for every pound of human flesh that would be surrounding your Thanksgiving table.
I asked my mom if they didn’t have fresh turkeys back in the day. I mean, what the hell? Wouldn’t that have alleviated all this stress?“
“EW! That would be like getting your eggs from a farmer! Too god damn fresh!”
I feel you, mom and moms of the 70’s and 80’s. Your lazy Gen X’er children were no good. You had to chop vegetables by hand. You didn’t have Bob Evan’s mashed potatoes to toss in a crockpot with a brick of cream cheese and pretend they were homemade. (As if!) Turns out all that damn silver we had to polish wasn’t even real.
The Thanksgiving nonsense is behind my mom. Now she’s an armchair sous chef, riddled with anxiety at the thought of fresh turkeys baking in oven bags for two hours and potluck dinner parties.
“Not my circus, not my monkeys,” she told me.
But don’t feel bad for my mom. She may have baked her own pie crusts and shelled almonds by hand, but did she ever split her pants halfway through dinner? Nope. Did I? Yep. I am a Thanksgiving cliche. Ripped ’em somewhere between green bean casserole and Butterfinger Brownie Cupcake.
Don’t ever feel bad for a vegetarian on Thanksgiving.
I have less taste buds and muscle mass, but I also have way less shits to give about things I used to care about. Or rather “things I didn’t care about but cared about people knowing I didn’t care about them.”
I know, right?
Let me tell you, getting old is great, but apathy is liberating! Why haven’t I tried this before? While some people are busy cultivating a stupid bucket list, I’ve been pecking away at my F*ck It list. Go ahead and judge. Seriously. I no longer care about your judgement!
I now present to you:
Shelly Mazzanoble’s Official F*CK IT LIST:
The Mediocre Outdoors
I didn’t move to the Pacific Northwest for the hiking, skiing, or five active volcanoes. The first time my friend Dan and I tried this “hiking” thing so many of my friends were fond of, we headed to Mount Rainier (where all beginners go for their first hike) and devoured two footlong Subway sandwiches, seven pounds of trail mix, four power bars, and a gallon of Gatorade before we completed one loop of the parking lot. We seriously spent more time debating banana peppers with the Subway Sandwich Artist than exploring the majestic wonder of the PNW.
This is sacrilege, people. Like a real, big affront to the Teva-wearing, tent pitching, fly-fishing men and women who surround me. It’s offensive. Like wearing mesh panel convertible pants to a wedding. I mean, who does that? Oh, I don’t know– maybe EIGHT PEOPLE AT MY WEDDING!)
I adore a good, cold day drink on a nice, covered patio. But I also like going home– to sleep. In my Heavenly Bed. And eat my perishable food that has been kept cool in my dual cool zoned refrigerator while sitting in front of a fully-charged electronic device. When it comes to the great outdoors I’m definitely less Bear Grylls and more Naked and Afraid. (Only not naked because I also love wearing clothes. Especially ones that don’t sound like a cacophony of 7,492 shushing librarians when I walk.)
Suck It, Adventure
There was a time when it felt like my duty to throw myself out of an airplane or take a spin on that stupid roller coaster atop of the Stratosphere casino in Vegas, or even want to go to Vegas, but I’m over it. There’s plenty of ways to enjoy myself that don’t involve a 30-page waiver and a camel-toe inducing harness.
On vacation in Australia my more adventurous friends wanted to go white water rafting. I agreed because I liked the sound of stories that began with, “That time I went white water rafting in Australia…” (Non-adventurous people still like sounding adventurous.)
The night before, it rained like the wrath of 1,000 pissing horses. So much rain we thought our trip would be canceled because surely the entire continent would be untethered from its island roots and float even further down under. But alas…turns out lots of rain only meant lots of water and lots of water meant gushing, surging roaring death traps, which apparently some people are into. Our Class 2 introductory rapids just got promoted to Class 837.
I was a hot, bloody mess the whole damn time. I’m surprised they didn’t just find a nice, muddy bank to pull over to and leave me to the yellow-bellied sea snakes. I mean, I wasn’t helping. In fact, I was actively not helping because “helping” required you to keep one butt cheek on the edge of a very slippery raft and the other butt cheek dangling inches over the angry rapids. Umm, no. My butt cheeks were planted in the middle of the boat, which kind of screwed things up for the rest of the passengers. The guide kept yelling at me to GET UP AND PADDLE, but I pretended I couldn’t hear him what with those roaring rapids in my ears. Was that even English he was speaking? Hard to tell. And get this! Everyone else was having a blast! Even the kid who broke his collarbone was having a grand ol’ time as paramedics belayed him up a cliffside. (I was so jealous of that guy.)
When it was finally over, the tour group took us to a bar to get us drunk enough to buy the commemorative photo package. When I went back to the bar for my sixth attempt to block out the day’s events, the photographer grabbed me by the shoulders and screamed in my face.
“YOU!” she yelled. “YOU WERE WONDERFUL!”
“What the hell?”
“Your face!” she screamed. “So expressive! I could have shot you all day.”
MY FACE??? My face that was expressing horror and terror and impending death was f’ing wonderful? YOU WERE STEALING THE SOUL OF A WOMAN RIGHT OUT OF THE HANDS OF THE GRIM REAPER! How dare you exploit my pain and suffering for your profit AND YES I WILL BUY THE WHOLE PACKAGE!
Upside Down You Ain’t Turning Me
I’m with you kids from Stranger Things. I ain’t going near the Upside Down. I don’t like somersaults, headstands, hanging by my feet and most of all any activity where vomiting is a probable side effect. I always take Dramamine if I’m approaching anything resembling water. I don’t eat adventurous food (unless you consider a salad bar adventurous and then screw it. I’m all over it.) And you will never find me on a cruise because HELLO! Come on up to the Lido Deck for your complimentary norovirus RIGHT F’ING HERE.
You know where else you won’t find me? Casually licking the cotton candy from my fingers as I wait my turn to ride the SCREAMING RAPTOR FLAMING GATOR DOOM DEATH FIRE COASTER. Oh hells no. Those days are over. Or rather day because it only happened once. It was Darian Lake 1988. I skipped school with my brother and his friends to spend the day at the amusement park. Somehow my brother convinced me to ride an upside down coaster. Now, I love a good roller coaster. Fast, wooden, rickety, side-ways tilted, neck jostling. But I do not appreciate being flung around in a loop-the-loop. Know what your life looks like as it passes before you? It looks upside down.
Somehow I survived, but I was clearly confused and suffering a rare form of Stockholm Syndrome towards The Viper. I went on the damn thing again. Ugh! And that was the last time ever. The only corkscrews I enjoy these are the ones that unplug my favorite Trader Joe’s tempranilo.
HELLicopters: The Devil’s Transport
Basically if I lived in Adventure Bay and needed to get out of a jam, Skye would be the last member of the Paw Patrol I’d want saving my ass. Look, Skye, it’s not because you’re a squeaky voiced, goofy-grinned, talking dog. It’s your prefered method of transportation. I don’t do helicopters. Not even hot pink ones. Just go get Rocky or Zuma or even Mayor Goodway, ‘k?
Helicopters are like super drunk people who can’t walk a straight line and need to lean on telephone poles and other drunk people to stay upright. There’s no good reason (other than aero-mechanics–but, whatevs!) why they should stay airborne.
We went to Hawaii for a babymoon and thought it would be fun to do a helicopter tour. Why look at a waterfall from the ground when you can soar through the mist 4,000 feet above? And because we were stupid jackasses with terrible judgement (see: BABYMOON) we chose the doorless option.
First shitty thing to happen was having our weight WRITTEN DOWN ON AN INDEX CARD and propped up on the instrument panel so the pilot could tell the bloated, insecure pregnant chick when to shift her burgeoning weight to her left ass cheek. You see, weight distribution matters on a helicopter because they’re assholes. I’m pretty sure Marlene from Columbus, OH didn’t want me to know she weighed 183 pounds and I sure as hell didn’t want her to know I was a pregnant stress eater. Also, doesn’t the pilot need to actually read those instruments he so carelessly covered up? How am I supposed to trust this guy? And how did I gain 8 pounds before the end of my first trimester?
I treated my first and only chopper ride much like how I treat snorkeling: DON’T LOOK DOWN DON’T LOOK DOWN DON’T LOOK DOWN! Who cares if that’s where all the good stuff is?
Clowns, Chainsaw, and the Houses They Live in
Aw piss off, carnival haunted houses and the seasonal lunatics who work there! They couldn’t have considered Cinnabon or a Dick’s Sporting Goods as a viable career alternative? If I wanted to pay money for people smeared in novelty make-up and tattered pants to yell in my face, my son would have his own PayPal account.
A few friends and I thought it would be fun to visit a haunted house sponsored by the worst radio station in the county. That should have been our first clue. The second clue should have been the sounds of people literally shitting themselves from inside, but nope. Still thought I could totally handle it! Spoiler alert: I couldn’t. I’m a chicken shit. I yelled like an awkward, overdramatic B-movie queen understudy who was a stellar method actor.
Know what happens when asshole carnies hear fear? It makes them hot and sweaty. They want more. Out come the clown pants wearing maniac revving the chainsaw in your face. Out come the cold spaghetti on the back of your neck. Out come the zombie surgeons and throat-slit starlets and decapitated doll heads with their bleary stares. These schulbs make it their minimum-wage mission to hunt you down, corner you in a cobwebby corner and breath in your ear. F’ing assholes jerks. Not today, Chuckie! Nobody puts this baby in a corner!
Tanning My Hide
Back in my impressionable teenager days, the most important thing you could bring home from vacation was a suntan. The quest started before you even went on vacation.
Step 1: Purchase a package from a tanning booth and stop there on the way home from school every single day for the 32 days leading up to vacation.
Step 2: Once you built your base tan, sit in the sun every single day from 8:30-5:30 until you look like a vintage rugby ball.
Step 3: Visit the tanning booth at least 13 more times when you get home to really seal in those UV rays.
It was hugely stressful to make sure you CAME HOME WITH A DEEP, DARK SAVAGE SUNTAN. I had to be the MOST HEAVILY PIGMENTED PERSON IN SCHOOL or I might as well just eat a handful of boogers or say no to alcohol at the homecoming dance. LOOOOOOOOOOSER!
Now fast forward a handful of decades later when the effects of Young Shelly’s SPF -40 Floridian Spring Breaks started to surface. Literally.
One day I stumbled into a skin care event at a department store. I was immediately ambushed by a woman in a lab coat.
“Let’s analyze your skin!” she said, pushing my neck into a little white box.
I had some time to kill and she was wearing a lab coat so I let her.
Inside the box was a little, mirrored device that transported me to the 10th level of hell. Clearly I had been here before because the face I saw reflected was the love child of Carol Channing and a cat’s anus.
“WHO’S FACE IS THIS?” I shouted at the woman in the labcoat.
“That’s you, sweetie!”
“But what are those around my eyes?” I screamed
“Crow’s feet,” she said.
“EEK! What are those holes?”
“Those are your pores. Gnarly, right?.”
Curse you, young Shelly and your stupid tan accelerator! (And curse you, Lab Coat Valley Girl!) Young Shelly left me with this crepey, discolored, freckled swath of skin that was going to turn to dust and fall off my bones the next time it rained.
Nowadays when I go near the sun I lather up the SPF. If I see the beginning of a tan line or a new freckle I immediately run indoors and repent. Do you know how hard it is to return from a South Florida vacation even whiter than how you left? Hard.
Take Me Out to the Ballgame, Where I Shall Sit on My Ass
Get behind me, gym class! I ain’t playing you no more! Softball was the bane of my school-age existence. I would immediately develop a stomach cramp and hives on days we were forced to play ball, which still wasn’t enough to get me out of class. I can’t hit. I can’t catch. I can’t throw in a straight line unless I turn my body 45 degrees. I’m that uncoordinated.
I tried to be on a team when I was 10 and the only time I got on base was when I deliberately walked into a pitch hoping it would end my career. Turns out I didn’t need to be that dramatic. My parents were very supportive of my decision to hang up the cleats and spend the rest of my summer watching soap operas and making macrame plant holders. Watching their daughter suffer through a sporting activity was worse than watching her intentionally get hit with a softball.
I Like Bad Taste and I Cannot Lie
I’m a devoted member of Bachelor Nation. I follow every Housewife on Twitter. I’ve been known to cry watching Say Yes to the Dress. But did you know I have terrible taste in music too? It’s true!
The other day at work I was listening to a random Spotify playlist and this amazing song came on. I checked who the artist was and was pleasantly delighted!
“Hey!” I shouted, forgetting I had headphones on. “I like Selena Gomez!”
“Stop talking,” my co-worker said. “Stop it right now.”
Gentle co-worker, I’m 184 years-old. I DON’T CARE! This Selena girl is going places!
I like boy bands. I still seek out that MMMmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmBop Hanson song at least once a week. And thanks to the movie, Sing, Quinn and I have almost daily dance parties featuring Taylor Swift and Carly Rae Jepson. Why didn’t I ever appreciate the genius of “Call Me Maybe”? It’s brilliant!
I dance like nobody’s watching and sing like… an asshole. But I also love like I just don’t give a damn and live like a liberated mother f’ing who just happens to be listening to the Backstreet Boys. Seriously, it’s amazing. You should totally try getting old.
While visiting family in the Chicago suburbs, Quinn’s Great Uncle Mike handed him a silver dollar. Quinn thought that was super cool. He’s starting to understand money. You get it, you trade it for cheap plastic toys, repeat.
Later at the hotel, we were all chilling on the king sized bed eating Chex Mix and watching Beach House Bargain, when Quinn started squirming.
“What are you doing, buds?” I asked.
“Trying to get my money out,” he answered.
“Out of where?” I asked like a stupid, dumb, moron mother. I mean, duh, Mom. Out of where do you think an almost 4 year-old stashes his money?
“Out of my butt,” he said.
Oh for f*ck’s sake, I thought. It’s finally happened. Sticks and stones and broken bones and coinage stuck in a pooter. Some kids stick marbles in their noses, some kids swallow magnets, of course mine is going to treat his butt like an ATM.
“What the hell, kid?” I asked, trying to remain calm. We were in the Chicago suburbs. There had to be what? 8? 9? 362 urgent care centers around us? Someone within a 2 mile radius will be way more equipped at digging coinage out of my son’s butt, right? (EDITOR’S NOTE: Jesus, woman, did you just say that?! Your kid will be a teenager one day! THE INTERNET IS FOREVER!)
More equipped like perhaps my life parter and baby daddy who was laying 2.6 inches away from his son’s currency-filled crack. But yeah, its hard to be able-bodied when you’re face-down in a dirty hotel pillowcase laughing your ass off. (EDITOR’S NOTE: Ass? Really? Because this is a story about butts? Lame joke, honey! You’re better than that! We’re better than that!)
“What money did you put in your butt, dear child?” I asked. “Or rather, who’s? Because stealing ain’t cool and even less cool is stealing and then hiding the goods in a sacred orifice.” Again, super calm because there was no need to get the child worked up and tense. Tense would be about the worst thing to happen here. Tense is what’s going to happen at the Urgent Care center. We don’t need tense right now.
“The money Uncle Mike gave me,” he answered with all the nonchalance of someone answering the question, “Where do you keep the Vaseline and tweezers?”
Oh, sweet relief! Okay. A silver dollar, you say? I admit, I’m not the most spatially gifted girl. If you ask me the distance between my home and Trader Joe’s, I would tell you 13 miles (EDITOR’S NOTE: It’s .04 miles) or how tall Quinn is I might guess maybe 2 and a half feet (EDITOR’S NOTE: Or 3.6 feet. But what’s an entire foot when talking about your child’s physical appearance.) But even I could ascertain (EDITOR’S NOTE: Oh good lord. How long has it been since you wrote a freakin’ blog post. ASCERTAIN? Because it sounds like “ass?” It’s not even spelled like that!) that a silver dollar could not fit into an almost four year-old’s…well, I don’t need to paint you a picture. But OMG, what if I did? What a horrible picture! (EDITOR’S NOTE: MOVE ON!)
So I helped Quinn out of his PJ’s, shook him a bit (EDITOR’S NOTE: You can’t shake babies, dummy! Use a different word!) Umm…okay so I jostled him a titch? And wouldn’t you know it, there dropped the silver dollar! Jackpotty! (EDITOR’S NOTE: Okay, jackpotty is actually pretty funny.)
“Disgusting!” Bart yelled, muffled because he was still guffawing into his pillow.
“Honey Bear,” I started, again in my calm mommy voice. “Please don’t put money anywhere near your butt. That could have been scary.”
“But why?” He asked.
“Because money is dirty. And if anything gets stuck inside your body, we’d have to go to a doctor to have it removed. And that might not feel too good.”
He looked appropriately repentant which pleased me. Got to grab those teachable moments when they jump in front of you and down your kid’s Thomas the Train pajamas.
And then he said, “Smell it.”
“I’m sorry, what?”
“Smell my butt coin!”
“OMG, no. This was a TEACHABLE GOD DAMN MOMENT! I’m not smelling your butt coin!
“No, baby bear I will not. Not ever.”
“SMELL MY BUTT COIN!”
“Please leave me alone, thank you.”
“Jesus Christ on a cracker, GET THE HELL AWAY FROM ME!”
“Mommy, smell it!!!!”
I jumped from sleeper sofa to bed to desk to shower stall back to bed to hallway to sleeper sofa and back again trying to shake the little loot tooter. But he was buoyed by his love of butts, poop, farts, being disgusting, and his dad’s encouraging hysterics so he was relentless.
“I’M YOUR MOTHER!” I yelled. “YOU DON’T TREAT MOTHERS LIKE THIS!”
In our house we have a saying. “Moms are for snuggles. Dads are for farts.” What was happening here was not normal.
“SMELL IT. SMELL IT NOW!”
“Make your dad smell it!” I shouted. “GIVE DADDY YOUR BUTT COIN!”
I…I…I don’t know what else to say. I can’t explain. I said that– no I yelled that. I know our neighbors must have heard it. Give daddy your butt coin.Go on, sweetie.Give daddy your butt coin so he can get you a Pepsi and some M&Ms. (EDITOR’S NOTE: How much are butt coins worth???? In a hotel vending machine that order is at least $4.75) Or If you can’t take care of your things you need to give Daddy your butt coin right now!
I know you want to know how this situation was resolved. My god you read this far you deserve to know the ending. I didn’t smell the butt coin, but I took possession of it. What choice did I have? I yanked it out of is gross, little hands and ran to the bathroom with it where I scrubbed it down with Marriott branded body wash, shampoo, and conditioner. Then I hid it in Bart’s toiletry bag.
“Aw, Mom!” Quinn pleaded. “I need it! Give me back my butt coin.”
“Sorry, kid,” I said, pouring hand sanitizer on his arms, neck, torso and face. “Your money is no good here.”
“Mommy, snuggle me.”
And just like that my baby was back. Mommy’s are for snuggles. Wow, I guess butt coin was a short phase. I kind of expected it to last a little longer. Sugar and spice and butt coins and lice.
I grabbed my soft, gentle, little sweetness and cozied up to him and about 8,945 filthy bedbugs on our king size hotel comforter.
I like ’em big, mellow, and old as dirt. Seriously, the more lich-like, medicated, and dusty-limbed, the more my bleeding heart goes pitter patter. I mean, look at that FACE!
And this face!
And this one!!!!
DOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOGGGGGGGGGGGGIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!Sorry. I get a little excited when I see these beautiful pups. Rizzo and Skye were two of my fosters and Charlie was my first dog ever and the one to compare everything else that’s good in the world to. (I’ll tell you all about her another time. You’ll love it. Super interesting to hear someone wax on about a beloved pet you never met that died 12 years ago. Bet you can’t wait.)
These 3 beauties had lots in common:
They used to be good, well-behaved dogs until they came to live with me
They were all rescued from shelters
They were all seniors
See? I have a type. One (my husband) might say I like my dogs on the “decrepit” side. I prefer to say “seasoned.” Or perhaps, “age advanced.”
Why are we talking about dogs? Because today is National Puppy Day! Even if I’m a bit of an ageist when it comes to bringing home a pet, I am weak to the charms of puppies. I’m not dead inside, people.
You have a doggie type too, but maybe you don’t know what it is. But PuppySpot (think eHarmony for puppies) does and they make it real easy for you to find out. See?
Hmm…looks like arthritic, gray-faced fossils isn’t one of the choices. Guess I’ll have to go with Loyal Companion.
Before you run off to the shelter, just look at this face!
He’s not a puppy but his name is. Look at that seasoned muzzle! Now excuse me while I stuff Puppy into his compression stockings and mix up his nighttime Metamucil. See what you’re missing?
The final episode began in Northern Finland. Home of Santa Claus, Nick’s sad, depressed family, and roving gangs of angry female department store elves helmed by Amy Schumer’s distant cousin.
For the last three years, Viall family vacations are tied to the ABC production budget. At least Finland was a cool place to visit. As they tentatively waited to meet the two seasonal loves of Nick’s life, they reminisced about meeting his two other TV almost-wives.
“We were devastated after Andi and Caitlin,” Nick’s dad recalled. “People asked if it was possible that it could happen again. Of course it is, I told them! Have you met Nick?”
Nick made a last ditch effort to stir up some drama on the world’s most undramatic Bachelor season ever by pretending to be all terrified he’s gonna get dumped at the altar again. Clearly this was producer mandated because Vanessa was also pretending to have second thoughts about accepting the proposal from a man who doesn’t even have her phone number.
Nick’s sad, traumatized family met Raven first. She was on her best behavior because she knew when you marry someone you marry the whole damn family.
Nick’s little sister Bella (who had the pleasure of meeting Raven a few weeks ago when Nick ambushed her soccer match) pulled Raven aside first.
Bella: Look bitch, I didn’t get yanked out of school to come to this freezing ass place to see my brother get dumped again. Do you know how embarrassing this is for a girl in middle school?
Raven: I’m kind of like a girl in middle school. Only I just had an orgasm!
Bella: So has every girl in middle school, dummy. Get with it. Do you love my big, dumb brother or what?
Bella: Okay! I really like you and hope he picks you. I mean, i don’t know that other girl, but if you promise to say yes, I’m totes sold!
Also sold was Nick’s mom who was convinced Raven couldn’t possibly hurt anyone. Uhhhh, Nick’s Mom? Let me tell you a story about a little, holy, goth girl and her high heeled shoe.
The next day Vanessa got to meet the Viall clan and they were made instantly aware this girl was way out of Nick’s league. Vanessa recanted their first date and that special way Nick looked at her after she threw up his mouth.
“Bingo! That’s what I’ve been looking for my whole life!!”
Vanessa’s approach to meeting the family was a tad different than Raven’s. While the latter was all moony-eyed and ready to pass out save the date cards, Vanessa took a more…what’s the word…realistic approach. First she told Nick’s mom she wanted to end up with Nick, but was scared to get engaged because you know– they don’t really know each other.
Then she told his sister she was worried about where they’ll live and–gasp– having to compromise.
Finally she asked his dad if love was all you needed to make a relationship work.
“Nope,” his dad said. “You need compromise, selflessness, willingness to stop going on dates in front of cameras, desire to live in the same country.”
And then he burst out crying.
And then she burst out crying.
And then they hugged.
Later Nick and his dad chatted about chicks.
Dad: You have a type.
Nick: No, I don’t.
Dad. You do. You like women you meet on TV.
Nick: Nah, not always. I banged that chick from Jade and Tanner’s wedding.
Dad: Don’t forget your track record.
Nick: Right. Good talk, Dad. Good talk.
Afterwards, the family then discussed options with Nick like maybe eHarmony or a personal ad or hooking up with college students at a bar. Dad said he’d be cool with either girl. Mom thought Raven’s eagerness to get a proposal might be a red flag.(Ya think, Nick’s Mom?)
Nick kept harping on the fact that there was a very real chance that one of these girls could dump his ass if he proposes because…you know… it’s happened. Twice.
Overall, Nick’s family is just about done with this TV nonsense.
Then it was time for the last dates before the inevitable proposal.
Vanessa put on her tall hat and joined Nick for an afternoon experiencing Nordic traditions like horseback riding and hanging out with Santa Claus. Vanessa felt like she was back in her childhood when she would ride a horse up mountain, knock on a random cabin, and a strange foreign man would wave her in.
Santa gave the couple some fertility-boon laser etched wood plaque depicting their faces before sending them off to have another weird conversation about their future.
Vanessa cried. Nick mumbled. She was upset. He was clueless. Did she want to say yes if he proposed? Would he move to Canada? Did she even really like him? She was determined to get reassurance later that night.
Vanessa: Everytime I ask you a question I get a very general answer.
Nick: ABC is making me be vague. It’s not good for ratings if I tell you I’m gonna pick you before the finale even though everyone knows I’m going to.
Vanessa: It’s not fair to make me wait and pretend Raven is actually competition. TELL ME!
Nick: Well I’ve been dumped on TV twice so I am very careful with my heart. Does that make sound romantic and hopeful or like the jaded, cynical prick I am?
Vanessa: Are you ready to propose?
Nick: Isn’t Finland beautiful?
Vanessa: I hate you.
Nick: I know. I hate me too.
Vanessa: That might be the only thing we have in common.
Then it was Raven’s turn, which meant another horrific music montage this time accompanying Nick and Raven’s ice skating date. They groped and spun and almost fell down as Kiss Me–a song as dated and cheesy as they are– played in the background. Raven was giddy thinking this was her last date as a single person ever.
Once again their afternoon cumulates with some having petting on an inappropriate surface.
After skating they warmed up by a fire. Nick left to retrieve a surprise and came back with three adorable husky puppies.
“I hope my kids with nick are as cute as these puppies!” Raven squealed.
The evening portion of the date took place at a chalet where Raven exuded more confidence in iIck being the person she was supposed to be with it.
“It’s a true love, y’all!
Nick toasted and thanked her for being there, sleeping with him, and allowing herself to fall in love. She thought that was so dang sweet.
Raven: So how are you doing? I mean, without giving too much detail. I don’t wanna get bored.
Nick: Man, it’s hard. This is a lot of pressure. You think it’s easy to have two girlfriends?
Raven: I never said that.
Nick: It’s hard! Thank goodness there’s PA’s around to help me remember your names.
Raven: Well, let me tell you, I will totally say yes when you propose. I’m ready! No hesitation! Vote for me!
Nick: Aw, now you’re sweet. You’re so sincere. It’s so hard to imagine you nearly bludgeoning someone to death with a shoe.
Now, if you’ve ever watched this show you know exactly how it’s going to turn out. There’s always one over-confident contestant and one humble one. Clearly he’s not going to pick the over-confident one because– hello! DRAMA. No freakin’ way.
Nick went back to his Nordic dungeon and thought about these two doomed relationships and let his heart guide him to the one who would earn him the most publicity.
At last, the world’s most famous traveling ring salesman showed up to schelp his overdesigned wares.
Nick: Neil Lane! We meet again!
Neil: Seriously man. You’ve been on this show almost as many times as I have.
Cut to Vanessa who was already sobbing in her evening gown. She was having some serious hesitations about getting engaged to this yahoo. There were still so many questions. Where will they live??? How could she leave her family??? Does Nick even have a job???
Then there was Raven, working on her Dream Wedding Pinterest board and waxing on about how Nick is everything she ever wanted.
“I believe in fairy tales! I’m ready! Bring it on!!!”
Nick was worried that if he proposed to Vanessa she might actually say no. She kept wanting answers to stupid logistical questions and reassurances about his stupid feelings. So lame. Maybe he should propose to Sure Thing Raven so he could finally live out his dream of getting engaged on national television. Then he burst into tears at the thought of having to dump someone the way he had been dumped all those times before.
The first limo pulled up and you know whomever gets out first is the reject. To my delight, Raven in a gaudy silver bridesmaid-to-a bride-who-clearly-hated-her-friends-dress stepped out. Yay! #sorrynotsorry.
She didn’t waste any time launching into a diatribe about how much she loved him and how he’s everything she ever wanted.
It took a while, but she finally got it. He didn’t kiss her on the mouth. They weren’t making out on a bed of straw and shards of glass. He wasn’t even smiling. Hmm…
NIck: Uhh, I really care about you, I respect you. I have much love for you. But umm… I just don’t think I’m in love with you. Miss you!
Raven: I know.
Raven: It’s cool. I can always be the next Bachelorette!
Nick: Umm, no you can’t. They already picked Rachel.
Raven: Rachel? But she’s black!’
Nick: Lemme walk you out.
Not only did Raven not get a ring, she didn’t get to retrieve her coat! Poor girl was freezing in the back of a limo wondering why Jesus won’t just let her be happy.
I was surprised she held it together so well. Oh wait, never mind!
Lights up. We see girl in desperate need of of a haircut and color crying and shivering in the back of a limo. She has a tiny mouth, like someone painted over her real mouth with flesh colored paint and taped a black pipe cleaner in it’s place. Yes, a black pipe cleaner. She’s grossly overdressed and clearly freezing because she doesn’t have a coat. As she speaks, she is overcome with emotion, barely able to get the full impact of her self-loathing across.
Girl in Limo: Is it that no one can feel that way about me? I wish I could find love. But I don’t even know if that’s possible. So why even look? It’s probably not possible. Now I have to go back to Arkansas and have my creepy brother spy on me and all the guys I take into the grain silos to make out with and them beat up with my shoe. Sigh…
Nick confessed he had been falling in love with Vanessa for a long time and was still fake worried about getting dumped. But he had been fighting the feeling for a long, long time and gosh darnit, he wasn’t fighting it anymore! He was going to ask her to marry him!
Vanessa spent her limo ride fretting over if Nick was really ready to deal with the pressures that came with an engagement like people constantly asking where you’re going to live and what will you do for a living. So annoying.
As they came face to face in the candlelit Nordic lodge, Nick said he knew the exact moment he fell in love with her. (HINT: It was after she threw up in his mouth.)
“When I look at you, all I see is my future and includes several covers of Us Weekly dedicated to our engagement and subsequent break up.”
Then Vanessa made a big, dumb speech.
“I didn’t think you would notice me. But instead you noticed every part of me. Thank you for taking another chance on love.”
Oh, please. What is this crap? OMG, who cares? No! NOT ME! IT’S NOT REAL, SHELLY!
So yeah, they’re probably broken up by now, which is why I wasn’t rushing to post this, but I know what you’re thinking: What will Nick do now that the cameras are turned off? Go away and enjoy life outside of the public eye? Reconnect with his sad family? Get to know his new fiancé? Oh hell no!
And the Universe has realigned itself.
Rachel, we are ready for you. Don’t disappoint us.
The Bachelor is leading us to believe all Finland has to offer is packs of running deer and snow. (And the Northern Lights if, you know, natural phenomenons are your bag.) That all may be true, but it’s time to update the tourism brochures. Finland can now proudly proclaim itself to be the locale where Raven had her first orgasm. That’s right. Nick brought his chunky cable knit sweater and his A-Game to the Fantasy Suite and left Raven, “Pretty satisfied.”
The next morning as she snuggled in a fur blankie and bid Nick adieu with a smooch and an “I love you,” Raven believed that was the first “meaningful” I love you with her future husband. Clearly she was suffering from Stockholm Syndrome.
As if her words were not vomit-inducing enough, we were then treated to a “My First Orgasm” music montage where a “fully awoken” Raven ran around poor, beautiful, peaceful Finland nuzzling dogs, high-fiving strangers, kissing reindeer, making snow angels, and poking her dumb hat-heavy head out from behind sculptures. I mean…what the…?
Just…stop, Raven. I don’t get you. Never have. If I could muster a morsel of a positive feeling towards Nick I would wonder what he sees in you, but I can’t. So I don’t. I think you should get married and take each other off the market and hump in the Arkansas mud and make enough babies to fill a Sunday School class. Also, your hat is stupid.
After Nick left Raven pretty satisfied in the Fantasy Suite, he met up with Rachel for another fun afternoon of stereotypical winter activity and mediocre satisfaction. They cross-country skied (perfect activity for a girl from Texas and a douche on two legs) to a safari where they geeked out on some reindeer who were less than impressed by these stupid Americans who were pretending to fall in love on TV.
“We’re just trying out new adventurers together,” Rachel mused. “There’s something beautiful and romantic about that.”
What wasn’t beautiful and romantic was the rational, sad, neglected voice inside Rachel’s head that didn’t believe all this hooey and therefore wouldn’t let her say stupid things like, “I love you!”
Instead she said, “I’m scared. Scared of rejection. Scared of putting it out there and him not giving it back.”
Oh honey, whatever Nick is putting out there, you’re surely going to get back. In fact, call your gyno now.
But alas. The Rational Rachel was asked to take a seat while Regretful Rachel had a nice, little chat with Nick.
Nick: I like strong people. I like strong women. I like knowing where I stand.
Rachel: I’m falling in love with you! Oh god, that’s so stupid I might make myself sick!
Nick: I’m totally falling for you too! 100%! You’re going to be such a great Bachelorette! Want to go to the Fantasy Suite?
Rachel: Totes! Just let me get my diaphragm!
Rachel felt good, she felt confident, she felt loved. Soon she would feel a burning sensation when she peed, but that’s besides the point.
“This is exactly the man i’m supposed to be with,” she beamed.
Rachel loved waking up with Nick–until he ate the breakfast off her plate and begged off to meet up with his other girlfriend.
Last but not least likely to get an STD, it was Vanessa’s turn to don a stupidly tall knit hat and wait outside in the cold for Nick to take her someplace even colder. They both hoped whatever unbearably frigid thing the producers cooked up would be better than that day they spent in Montreal with Vanessa’s annoying sane, close, cynical family and their constant barrage of inane questions.
Because their relationship had always been so, “hot and steamy,” Nick thought a Finnish ice bath would be an appropriate activity.
Nick: Hey! We’re going to wear matching, ill-fitting swimsuits, hang out in a boiling hot sauna, and then run outside to submerge ourselves in a freezing ass lake.
Vanessa: My family was right– you suck.
Nick: I don’t want to do it either, okay? But all the good dates were already taken by my other girlfriends.
Vanessa: I want to murder you. Like chop you up and feed you to the reindeer.
After the third dip in the freezing ass lake, Vanessa started enjoying it, which goes to prove this woman has terrible taste in pretty much everything.
Once they were warm and dry, they discussed Vanessa’s very traditional family and Nick’s blatant dislike of very traditional families.
Nick: I once dated a girl who’s family was very…present. I hated it. I hate family. They all suck. I wish I was hatched from a bed bud and sunflower seed.
Vanessa: I will never compromise on ANYTHING! Especially not spending six hours with my family EVERY, SINGLE SUNDAY!
Nick: Like every Sunday?
Vanessa: I just hope you remember that relationships are based on compromises!
Nick: But you just said you would never compromise.
Vanessa: I WON’T! You will be doing all the compromising, assface!
That night Vanessa became confused. Maybe she had a delayed case of hypothermia? Maybe the sight of Nick in a tiny blue weenie bikini zapped her out of this forced romantic reverie? Or maybe she just hadn’t had enough to drink yet. While she could picture spending the rest of her life with Nick, she didn’t understand why their conversations were always so heavy. Also, why the hell wouldn’t he want to spend ¾ of every day with her family? I mean, what the literal hell? And speaking of family, Vanessa figured now was as good a time as any to talk about the whole, “What country would we live in if you proposed?” question they were all so obsessed with. (ANSWER: Doesn’t freakin’ matter! Before you can Google “What the eff is a toonie?” your fake love story will be resigned to old Us Weekly’s languishing on Bombay Company end tables in dentist waiting rooms.
Neither Nick nor Vanessa seemed interested in leaving their home countries so they decided to talk about it after spending the night in the Fantasy Suite.
In the morning, Vanessa had been duped into thinking Nick was her other half. She believed herself to the luckiest person in the world, but was admittedly a little worried because they still hadn’t settled on which country they’d live in. But oh well! Time for a Rose Ceremony!
Even the luckiest woman in the world wasn’t immune to a little insecurity and doubt. Standing next to Raven and Rachel who also reeked of eau de Fantasy Suite toiletries made her wonder if she was good enough. (ANSWER: Honey, the day you hit send on your application was the day you should have asked yourself that.)
But I digress.
Nick was a hot mess, barely able to properly thank each of the girls for taking the time to sleep with him without bursting into tears. He sniveled and cried as he handed roses to Raven and Vanessa.
Oh no way. You mean the girl who was tapped to be the next Bachelorette a MONTH AGO didn’t get a rose?! No way, ABC. Didn’t see that coming. Impressive run, Rachel. We’ll see you soon. Maybe not soon enough for Nick.
Rachel: Ew. I can’t believe I thought we had a thing.
Nick: You’re the most incredible woman I ever met. I hope this isn’t goodbye forever. Wink, wink, nudge, nudge!
Rachel: Ew. Just…ew.
Nick: I’m always going to think of you. Even after I propose to and dump one of those bimbos over there. Can I walk you out?
Before she got into the back of the limo, Nick hugged her tight. Like really tight. Maybe he really liked her but ABC paid him to dump her. Or maybe they really liked her and promised him a spot on her season the The Bachelorette.
As a lone tear streamed down Rachel’s cheek in the back of the limo, Nick popped a squat next to a lantern and cried.
Who will Nick chose to enter into a highly publicized, ill-fated relationship with? Only one more week of putting up with Nick and his fake feelings! Weeeeeeeee!
There’s good news and bad news about this week’s episode of The Bachelor:
Good news: It was only an hour!
Bad news: It involved one long, drawn out, pathetic , TMI-filled date between Raven and Nick.
Good news: It’s Fantasy Suite time! Bahahahaha!
Bad news: It involved Raven and Nick.
Good news: There was a big, fat, kiss off at the Rose Ceremony.
Bad news: I’m already bored without her.
Don’t worry, we’ll get there. But if I had so suffer through Nick and Andi’s incredibly fake, obviously scripted, weird role-play then so do you. That’s what friends do.
Nick: I’m so vulnerable! Is this how you felt?
Andi: Oh god, no! You’re a loser!
Nick: You dumped me on national TV!
Andi: I’d do it again in a heartbeat. In fact, can I? We’re on TV right now!
Nick: Maybe I’ll dump someone on national TV. Ever think of that?
Nick: What? I don’t have to marry one those bitches just because I’m the Bachelor and ABC is paying me to!
Andi: High five, you bad boy, you! Oh hey, are you going to have sex with all of them in the Fantasy Suite?
Nick: Uh duh, Andi. But probably not all at once. I mean, unless they’re cool with that.
Andi: Know what I think? Who cares? DO IT! Bang ‘em all! You’re dating them! You have three girlfriends! You already met their parents! You’ve been on at least three dates. DO IT! Don’t buy a cow without a test drive. Or, wait, what? Who cares. Just DO IT!
Nick: Wow, Andi! Great advice!
Andi: Right? I’m such a feminist! Roar!
Nick: I’m not sure telling a dude to bang three different women and not care about it is being a feminist, but oh well!
Andi: WHO CARES???
Nick: Sorry I told everyone we slept together and then slut-shamed you for two years.
Andi: Sorry I humiliated you on national television. I mean, I’m sorry. Not regretful. You’re still a loser.
Meanwhile, back at the house, Vanessa couldn’t stop crying, Rachel thought she was falling in love for real this time, Raven was ready to say yes, and PV was feeling vulnerable because after their day of shopping, Nick now knew her “to the core.”
Nick was late to the Rose Ceremony because of his fireside chat with Andi. He made the girls wait on a rooftop deck, freezing in their mega-slit gowns, seriously regretting their choice to go Brazilian.
When he finally arrived, (dressed in all black to exemplify what a slimey bastard he was,) Nick apologized for making them wait, but failed to mention the whole “drinking whiskey with my ex-girlfriend” thing.
PV’s not a cold weather sort of gal.
Nick was all blah blah blah, hometowns were fun, families were nice, thanks for cooking all that pasta, sorry everyone hated me. Raven got the first rose which still surprised me. I mean, what the hell? Does her daddy own a television network or something?
Rachel got the second rose, but we all know that ain’t happening.
And then things got nice and dramatic as Nick was forced to chose between the pretty, kind, intelligent special needs teacher or the vapid, insecure, morally defunct exhibionist. I honestly had no idea which way he would go.
But he chose…
Wait for it…
PV was going ho ho home! E-jected! Gone Gonorrhea Girl! The penicillin express was leaving the station with only one bleary eyed, bleating, sadsack with a ton of baggage on board.
PV burst into tears which was weird. Kind of like seeing an iguana cry. She apologized for whatever it was she did wrong.
Wait, what?! She was that girl? The “clearly-I’m-not-good-enough-for-you-so-why-didn’t-I-buy-you-the-cashmere-sweatsuit-instead” girl? Good lord, PV! Your lady parts are allegedly made of a rare, precious metal and you’re apologizing to a guy we’ve seen dumped on TV more times than that weird blue liquid on a maxi pad? Oh girl…
Nick assured her than other than submitting an application to be on this stupid show, she did nothing wrong.
“I’m gonna miss the hell out of your boobs– I mean, you,” he said.
It took all her energy to stay awake, stand up, and stutter, good luck.
Man, she was bawling. Like Raquel-said-no-more-cheesy-noodles bawling! The only thing harder than how she was taking this was the crusty, old dairy products embedded in her cleavage. That’s gonna be a bitch to get off.
As she was stuffed into the backseat of the waiting town car, she immediately got drunker, more revealing, and less coherent. (More so than usual, I mean.) Here’s the highlight reel of her confessions:
“Feels like my heart…like never will be repaired.”
“Why can’t I just have a normal relationship like they do on TV?”
“I’m done trying to show my men how much I worships and support them! Done!”
“Imma jus gonna be me…”
“Not gonna kiss up to a man ever again.”
“I’m so done.”
“And so sleepy.”
Good night, PV. Unlike anything about you, it’s been real.
And bye bye, Brooklyn. It was time to pack up and head to Finland. (I’m so sorry, good people of Finland.) Thankfully PV and her perpetual snotty nose aren’t coming.
Finland wasn’t just snow and vodka. It’s the location for the Fantasy Suite dates, which incidentally was stocked with plenty of snow and vodka. For those who may not know what the Fantasy Suite is, allow me to explain. It’s the most contrived, pseudo-romantic “suite” where the Bachelor/Bachelorette and their remaining contestants can be alone without the cameras. It’s gross and awesome, but unless you’re sleeping with Nick no one knows for sure what goes down in there.
Before their date, Nick donned a parka and wandered around a snowy field looking for clarity. What he discovered was:
He and Vanessa still had a lot of questions to answer, superficial ones like, “Where you gonna live?” Also her family was mean.
Rachel was the only woman who hadn’t professed her love, but he was sure she’d get there. But if not he would still sleep with her.
He wasn’t entirely sure where Raven’s heart was, which might be the stupidest thing this guy ever said. Umm, really, dickhead? Two days ago she was climbing all over in a field of mud and she practically weeps whenever she looks at you. Duh
“Let’s spend the rest of the episode focused on Nick and Raven’s one-on-one date,” said the worst producer ever. Thanks a lot, jerkwad.
Raven was determined this time she would tell Nick she was in love with him. She never told any other guy that before. Well, except Jesus.
They popped into a local pub, drank beer, and played darts while locals seethed in the background. Raven felt like she was in one of those choose your own adventure books where every choice was a “new, great experience!
Yeah, Dumbo, every choice is a “new, great experience” because every choice is choreographed and paid for by a major television network! THIS IS NOT REAL LIFE!
Also, STOP PLAYING WITH YOUR HAIR!
Sorry, I must have been temporarily hypnotized by all that hair twirling because I had no idea how those two ass clowns got on the topic of household chores.
“You’ll cook and I’ll fold clothes!” she squealed.
“I like creases in my pants!” Nick squealed.
“Ew, creases!” Raven squealed.
Oh, you two crazy kids!
But Raven was only focused on Nick’s creased chinos because she needed a distraction from what was really on her mind:
Having to tell Nick she loved him
Having to have sex with Nick in the Fantasy Suite
Okay this show is gross and all, but sex in the Fantasy Suite isn’t a requirement. Just saying. Also, she casually mentioned in her confessional that she’s only had one sexual partner. Oh and she’s never had an orgasm. (Hi, Raven’s Dad!)
They escape to a cabin in the woods where someone put a lot of effort setting a table and plating food no one will even look at.
Raven went on a long rambling rant with lots of diversions and tears and stupid metaphors about “never having felt the feelings she was feeling” and every time she talked to him she got a “comfort feeling.” Jesus, take the wheel and make her say it! When she finally blurted out the most anti-climatic “I love you,” ever, Nick thought it was the best professions of love he ever heard. The editors begged to differ.
Raven accepted ABC’s invitation to the Fantasy Suite, but needed to remind Nick of two things:
Raven: So, umm, I’ve only had one sexual partner before. And I beat his ass with a shoe.
Nick: Cool! I’ve only had one sexual partner too…today. Heya!
Raven: Also, I’ve never had an orgasm. So like, no pressure.
Nick: Damn straight, no pressure! You think I care about reciprocation in the bedroom? Oh girl, you got a lot of mud up between those ears.
Alone with a thirty-person camera crew, Nick and Raven settled in and waited for the Northern Lights (not a euphemism.)
Will Raven add a second notch to her belt? Will she finally have an orgasm? Will any of the other remaining girls be dumb enough to sleep with this guy? Will anyone have an orgasm? Probably not. But you’ll have to wait for next week to find out for sure.
The girls were still reeling from the unceremonial dumping of Kirstina. How can Nick dump so many women without a ceremony? (ABC must be saving a ton on roses this season.) The girls are like SO DONE with surprises! I mean, what in the actual hell was going on here? It’s not like ABC was trying to get ratings or something. PV was so freakin’ unstable she had to drink her chardonnay out of a coffee mug.
And then there was a knock on door!
And it was Nick!
He admitted it was tough to get rid of Kristina because he really “loved” and “respected” her and everyone knew he couldn’t possibly marry a girl like that.
“But you ho’s on the other hand,” he said as he doled out roses. “Hubba hubba!”
Hooray! All four girls were getting hometown dates!
“I am so excited to meet Raquel!” Nick squealed.
First stop was Hoxie, Arkansas to meet Raven’s coven. She was super excited to show Nick a new side of her: fun and sexy! She demonstrated both (I guess?) by inviting Nick to partake in Hoxie’s favorite activities–mudding, frog farming, and breaking into grain bins.
Mudding is exactly what it sounds like. You climb aboard an ATV and barrel through gigantic, mud-soaked fields and get really muddy.
They rolled up to a grain bin where “the people of Hoxie leave their secrets.” They got almost the top when wouldn’t you know it? The police showed up.
“What you doing here? You know who owns this here grain bin? You got any ID? You ain’t from around here, are you, sonny boy?”
Nick appeared perplexed and afraid while looking for a producer to, you know, explain things and I was wondering why the cop wasn’t telling the cameras to stop rolling, but whatever. I don’t get arrested much so what do I know? Just as Nick was about to submit to a cavity search, SURPRISE! It was just Raven’s brother! Oh man! You totally got us, Raven’s brother!
“Don’t be kissing on the grain bin!” He warned. “I’ll be watching!”
You will be? EWWWWWW, Raven’s brother!
After the police fake out, they resumed mudding activities and got good and soaked. Raven stripped Nick down so they could enjoy a nice lil’ biblical wrestle in the mud. Wearing a white t-shirt today was totally a good choice, Raven. Where was that creepy brother now?
Nick felt like this was a huge step forward in their relationship. Or wait, maybe he meant this:
They’d have some serious cleaning up to do before meeting her parents, but first a bit more dirty.
As they approached Raven’s parent’s front door, she casually mentioned her dad was diagnosed with lung cancer.
“Oh, umm,” Nick stammered. “I brought flowers.”
Don’t worry, it was only sad for a minute because Raven’s mom announced Dad was just declared cancer free. An actual touching moment ensued.
But so did this weird, fake romance.
Nick was only the second guy Raven had ever brought home, so it was a big deal, y’all!
“Is it weird to think you could be walking me down the aisle to marry that guy in there?” Raven asked her dad.
“Oh girl, so f’ing weird.”
Then Raven had a really sweet chat with her mom.
Raven: I thought he was going to be really arrogant, you know? Like a total toolbag.
Raven’s Mom: That’s what I thought too! I hate his face.
Raven: But then I saw him be really nice to his little sister and I was like, “Oh. He’s cool!”
Raven’s Mom: I trust your judgement!
Nick also had a heart-to-heart with Raven’s dad.
Nick: So how would you feel if your daughter wanted to marry me?
Raven’s Dad: Pretty shitty!
Nick: I care about her a lot. She’s definitely in my top four.
Raven’s Dad: Well, I admit, I wasn’t expecting to like you. I mean, you’re kind of a loser. But I guess I’d rather her marry you than the cheating bastard she beat up with her shoe.
Raven left her family feeling reassured and hopeful and decided the time was right to tell Nick she’d totally say yes if he wanted to propose to her.
“I have no reservations,” she said. And then promptly beat herself up for not saying, “I love you.” I mean, Nick’s not that smart. What if he didn’t get what she meant? Great. Now she’d probably be the only girl left who hadn’t said it! Stupid, stupid, stupid!
Next it was off to Dallas to meet Rachel’s family. After a huggy, kissy reunion on a sidewalk, Rachel whisked Nick off to a gospel church filled with black people because she wanted Nick to be “super comfortable.”
Even though this church was different from his church back home (wait. what?) he had an amazing time. So amazing that Nick was ready to spend every Sunday being the only white guy in Rachel’s church.
Unfortunately Rachel’s dad wasn’t home due to “work obligations” (READ: Deep seated humiliation and disgust) but Nick did get to meet her mom, aunt, sisters and WHITE-ASS brother-in-law!
“You don’t need to have black skin,” Rachel said. “But you need to have thick skin.”
Her sister and white brother-in-law grilled Rachel and Nick first.
“Is Rachel the first black girl you’ve ever dated?” White brother-in-law asked.
“Well, define ‘dated.’ I mean, I sleep with black girls all the time. Or at least I did twice.”
Rachel’s mom was also curious about Nick’s history with black women. She also shared advice she imparted on her daughters.
“Always look for red flags in relationships,” she said. “So Nick, what are Rachel’s red flags?”
“Uh, uh, uh…other than wanting to marry me? I mean, that’s a pretty huge red flag, don’t you think?”
Finally Nick jetted off to Miami to meet the weird ass mutants that spawned such a debaucherous egomaniac who can’t keep her clothes on. Nick was super excited to be in Miami. He had no clue what PV had in store for him, but knowing her he figured it probably would involve nudity and pubic lice.
Because she really wanted Nick to get to know “her true essence”, and because she’s a superficial, conceited twitwit, the date she planned was a tour of all the places she felt most at home–a very upscale shopping mall where it’s common to put on fancy clothes and dry hump in front of the mannequins.
Nick was blown away by the fact every single sales associate knew her intimately and the $1,400 sweatsuit she made him try on. She wanted Nick to look good when meeting her parents so she bought him an outfit costing more than an entire year of spray tans for the Miami University cheerleading team.
You guys, the outfit cost $3,423!!!
You guys, she paid for it!
You guys, he let her!
Once she had Nick outfitted properly, she made a tiny confession: She loved him! Oh puke. They consummated her egregious and highly inappropriate declaration with a sloppy makeout session outside a fake Parisian mall bistro.
Wow. PV has some serious sun damage.
PV’s parents looked like nice, cuddly, friendly adults who other than Nick’s mom and dad were the only parents who had any concern over Nick’s inability to meet a woman outside of televised game shows.
And yes, Nick finally got to meet RAQUEL!
PV: The other girls made fun of me because I have a nanny.
PV’s Mom: How they hell did they find out you had a nanny?
PV: I told them.
PV’s Dad: You dumbass!
PV’s Mom: I hope you also told them Raquel is a valued and loved part of our family and has been for seventeen years. RAQUEL! I’m hungry! Serve faster, please. And be a dear and put some of these olives on my fork for me. You know I hate round food. See? FAMILY!
PV’s Dad sat her down and asked some “serious questions.”
PV’s Dad: What the eff is going on here?
PV: I love him!
PV’s Dad: For the love of god don’t tell him that!
PV: I already did!
PV’s Dad: It’s been like six days! What the hell is wrong with you!?
PV: I love him! He’d be my soulmate if I had a soul.
Dad: What’s his job?
PV: Who the hell cares? There’s no time to work when you’re always on reality TV shows.
Dad: Are you okay being the breadwinner? And have him stay home with your kids?
PV: Sure, Dad. Stop asking me questions like none of this is normal!
Later, PV’s dad and Nick enjoyed some fine scotch and another line of questioning.
PV’s Dad: You may have noticed my daughter is a superficial, materialistic little troll. I may have had something to do with that. But now she’s gonna be your problem! You ready for that?
Nick: Sure! I mean, as long as she stays super slutty and never develops any of those annoying traits like modesty or decency.
PV’s Dad: Oh sure, no chance of that happening. But you kind of need…you know…a job. What’s next for you?
Nick: I’ve got lots of irons in the fire. And by irons and fire I’m talking about my penis and the the other girls amirite!?
PV’s Dad: Cheers to that! But what’s gonna be your J.O.B., dumbass!?
Nick: There are lots of things I can do like Celebrity Rehab, Marriage Boot Camp, maybe Celebrity Boxing.
Last trip was off to Montreal to meet Vanessa’s family and her adorable students who clearly loved her. They were holding signs and handing her roses and bawling because they missed her so much. Nick was like, “BOOOORING! Do you like my new sweater? It cost more than Vanessa’s six-month earnings!”
The crew spent the afternoon creating scrapbook pages of Nick and Vanessa’s most favorite memories. Oh look! There’s Vanessa puking into Nick’s mouth! And there she is crying and doubting her value as a human being in front of a roaring fire.
Next stop was to meet Vanessa’s mother’s side of the family at Nonna’s house where 15 people sat around the most gigantic table ever set. Food was piled high, but no one cared because they all had deep, probing questions for the happy couple like:
Where will you live if he picks you?
“Oh, you know,” Vanessa answered. “I’m sure we’ll live somewhere. I don’t really want to pressure him.”
Hmm. Vanessa’s aunt started to get a sense that perhaps Nick and Vanessa don’t really…you know… talk.
Vanessa’s mom had a different line of questioning for Nick.
Mom: What do you like about my daughter?
Nick: Oh, I liked her as soon as she got out of the limo. I mean, va va va voom, riiiiiiight?
Mom: Well, you’re as gross as I thought you would be.
Vanessa’s sister was having none of it.
“Have you talked about real things?” she grilled Nick. “Like how you both live in different countries? Like where you want to live? Like what your job will be if you have to move? Like why you want to marry her?”
“Ew, sister!” Nick answered. “That kind of boring shit is what married people talk about!”
Not completely satisfied with that answer, Vanessa’s sister promised that if Nick hurt her sister, she would hate him forever. That made Nick cry.
Meanwhile Vanessa was chatting with her much younger and savier brother.
“What will you do for work? Where will you live? What the hell does he do for a living? Why do you want to marry this guy?
“Ugh! Enough with the logical questions! Who cares where people live! We’ll talk about living situations when the time is right, okay?”
All those questions really put a damper on things and they hadn’t even visited her dad yet! That visit went something like this:
Vanessa’s Dad: Why is my daughter more special than all those other bimbos?
Nick: She’s hot! And she makes me feel safe. And umm.. I like her brown hair.
Vanessa’s Dad: But do you respect her?
Nick: Come again?
Vanessa’s Dad: Will you treat her like a lady, you stupid flytrap?
Nick: Ooooh, you know it! So can I have your blessing?
Dad: Are you f’ing crazy? What did her mom say?
Nick: I didn’t ask because I did not care for her particular line of questioning.
Dad: So you want to get engaged to my daughter? Is that what you’re telling me?
Nick: Well no, because I’m still dating three other girls.
Dad: So what the hell does it mean to want my blessing?
Nick: Umm that you…don’t totally hate me?
Dad: Right. Okay, I guess!
Vanessa’s Dad told her Nick asked for his blessing, which at once made Vanessa all hopeful and then concerned. Was he asking all the other parents the same thing? Does he actually like those other girls???
The group returned to Brooklyn for the rose ceremony, because why not? All of the girls with the exception of PV were feeling insecure and having doubts about saying (or not saying) I love you. Just as Nick was deep in a faux thoughtfulness on a balcony overlooking Manhattan, there was a knock on the door. It was ANDI! You know, the first of three women to dump him on national television. WHY WAS SHE THERE? To pay tribute to the GIANT BULLET SHE DODGED or just to make fun of him? I guess we’ll have to wait to find out. What’s with all these cliffhangers, ABC?! It’s not like this is the most boring season ever and you have to manufacture the drama. Oh…right.