Ali Fedotowsky The Bachelorette, Episode 7.

Let’s go ahead and call this what it is, the Jake and Vienna episode. We’ll get to that shortly. First, though, Ali went on dates with the five guys that remain: Ty, Kirk, Roberto, Frank, and Chris L. This round was different though, in that no roses were given out on the dates, and one of the dates was a two-on-one. The first date card arrived and named Roberto as the datee. Ali showed up at the guys’ hotel room and greeted them in Spanish, an attempt to welcome them to Lisbon, Portugal. Roberto translated, turns out she said, “Toilet sandwich in ocean airplane.” Nice one, Ali.

The date went well, and it’s no surprise if you’ve been watching the show to see that Ali and Roberto have chemistry. He’ll end up in the top three, no question. Date two was with Ty and Frank. Frank admitted that Ty is his toughest competition so he’s miffed they’ll be together for the two-on-one. Hey, when you’re fighting for fourth place, does it really matter? Cue the helicopter ride. So does anyone believe in regular transportation anymore? I mean, I can hardly remember the last time I picked a girl up in a helicopter. It’s not normal to do that. What’s normal is a car. Two cars. Meaning the guy and the girl drive their own car to meet at an agreed upon location. That way when the date goes sour, they can drive around to find something better going on. No helicopters! The highlight of this date was when Ali asked Ty to chat privately. As they left, Frank saluted them. Didn’t that happen to a curly-haired Cory on Boy Meets World? He saluted Topanga and was so embarrassed. He still became her boyfriend by the end of the episode, but I don’t think Frank will fare that well. Later, Frank gets away with Ali and they talk about their own families. He’s worried about telling Ali that he lives with his parents but eventually spits it out. She says, “Awww,” and hugs him like he just fell off his bicycle. Had he just told her without acting like it was a big deal, he wouldn’t have emasculated himself.

The next date went to Kirk (who will end up in the top three). They got along well, but is Kirk reminding me more and more of a great camp counselor? He smiles a lot and seems to have a lot of energy. Perfect for Swim Day at the pool and thrilling children with late-night adventure stories. But this is about what Ali thinks of him, and she likes him.

The last date was with Chris L. She kept mentioning that “it may be a little too late” for Chris to make a solid romantic connection. Isn’t it a little strange that this is the first we’ve heard of Ali’s concerns about the Chris L. relationship developing too slow? Producers are awarded zero points. Anyway, he gave her what is perhaps the most personal gift anyone has given her so far, except Kasey’s two freestyle songs. He gave her a tennis bracelet that is like the ones his sister and his mom had/have. Pretty cool.

Roses went to Chris L., Frank, Roberto, and Kirk. Poor Ty Longnote (clever reference to last week’s recap) got sent home this time around. I think he would have been sent packing last week but because Justin left on his own accord, Ty got to stick around one more episode.

The last forty-five minutes were dedicated to Jake and Vienna. Honestly, the best forty-five minutes of The Bachelor/ Bachelorette I’ve ever seen! It will go down in the annals of history as the moment this show turned a corner, earning it a spot in reality television goldness. Songs like Alan Jackson’s “Where Were You When the World Stopped Turning”. Songs like “Gives You Hell” by the All American Rejects. Songs like “Baby” by Justin Bieber. All are being considered for the theme song of this episode. It was amazing. Somewhere in America, Tenley is pressing play on the track “Walk Like An Egyptian” by The Bangles and she’s dancing like no one’s watching! Jake and Vienna acted like two third-graders fighting about who gets to sleep in the cot by the window. Highlight #1 was when, after Chris Harrison got the rundown from Jake, Vienna appeared from the forest. She was there to tell her side of why they broke up. Jake said it’s because she cheated on him. Vienna called him a “fame whore.” But evidently Jake has evidence she cheated. We found this out when he gave us the quote of the night:

“Oh yes, baby, I’ve got text messages.”

Then Vienna called him a fake liar. Wait, wait, doesn’t that mean he’s telling the truth? Oh yes, baby, you just used a double negative! She turned to Chris Harrison and asked if Jake can take a polyagraph test. Last I checked polygraph didn’t have an “uh” in it. Polyuhgraph. Hilarious, Vienna! Somewhere Tenley’s doing the hokey pokey and shaking it all about!

Check back in next week for a recap of episode 8!

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Will You Accept This Prose?

If dating were only as easy as The Bachelor makes it seem! The show is more of a scientific experiment than it is a true attempt at finding love. That’s why when you include the unknown variable, the X factor called “life,” the experiment most often blows up.

Jake Pavelka

If you can prove the success rate of that show is higher than the number of Yanni discs you have in your collection, then I will be a little more optimystique (optimism + still a little confused on where they mysteriously find the contestants for The Bachelor). Until then, I will have the sincerest devotion to the old-fashioned romantic moments I hear about when my parents or grandparents tell me how their stories began.

In my time, though, dating is a little different from theirs. Only slightly different because although the form or fashion in which relationships happen has changed dramatically (with the onslaught of social sites on the internet, ability to travel great distances quickly, revolution in sound technology, and, oh yeah, the internet!), the fundamentals of solid dating relationships remain the same: communication, common interests, mutual friends, keys to imagination and similar world views. The Bachelor includes one, maybe two of these fundamentals, and therefore, is starting behind the eight ball from the very beginning. The reason the success rate’s extremely low is because the relationships are formed in a controlled environment, just like an experiment. Once the show is over and the elements are introduced into the “real world,” the variables can no longer be controlled. Variables like career goals, family, location, ethnicity, and many more. To further my argument that dating is much harder than The Bachelor reveals, I give you… exhibit A: High School Ben Wilder.

My dating life got off to a slow start and to be perfectly honest, my first real kiss was in 10th grade. If I could tell you that secret with little to no embarrassment, then I’ve made progress in the 15 years gone by since. I often refer to my high school love life as “the private years” but again, to be perfectly honest, shrouding those years in privacy makes my love life sound so much more mysterious and exciting than it actually was. Tracy the softball player*. That’s who I kissed. Out of silence my love life burst into song!

Whether we were listening to “Sukiyaki” by 4 P.M. or the best of Yanni at the time, I can’t say. I was just happy it happened. A quick encouragement to readers patiently awaiting their first kiss: Hang in there and dare to dream!

To sum up, I hope these personal reflections of passion (I wouldn’t call my example of dating passionate, actually) help to prove the point that in dating, as in real life, sometimes you got to learn the hard way, not the live-on-television way. And yes I’m talking to you, too, Jake Pavelka. Vienna? Really? Reconsider Sheila Lidner (or return to suprise Ali Fedotowsky this season) before you tell Vienna, in one of your best Yanni voices, “niki nana.” However, if you end up marrying Vienna I’ll make a toast in celebration of life… and I’ll look up and whistle while I’m walking.

*I refer to Tracy’s love life in high school as “the chameleon days,” because I later found out she is now a lesbian. Hope it wasn’t because of me!