Have I ever told y’all about when David and I were dating and he whisked me off to New Zealand?
Maybe that’s because IT NEVER HAPPENED.
However, he did take me to the Ryan’s Family Steakhouse buffet a few times, and oh, we did we ever make eyes at each other over a basket of piping hot yeast rolls (with some Country Crock Honey Butter Spread on the side).
So what I’m saying is that I can’t really relate to the whole fantasy date thing. I can’t relate to going back to a “fantasy suite” (though we did stay at a Comfort Inn & Suites recently, but that was a wee bit different than some sort of romantic hideaway in New Zealand). And I sure as heck can’t relate to wearing a bikini and piling up in a hot tub ON NATIONAL TELEVISION because, well, NO.
But don’t think for one second that my inexperience in these areas is going to prevent me from discussing them.
Tonight’s fantasy date episode of The Bachelor started with Jason saying “her and I” AGAIN, but I was willing to forgive his pronoun errors since I really liked the scruffy beard he was sporting. After ten minutes of recap, we finally got to see Jason in New Zealand, where he wore a leather jacket and stood on a rock and looked very rugged (see: scruffy beard).
Jillian had the first fantasy date, and Jason picked her up in a helicopter (which, by the way, was always the preferred method of transportation when David and I went to the Ryan’s Family Steakhouse). Apparently Jason and Jillian talked beforehand and said, “Hey! I know! Let’s both wear PLAID!” because they were both sporting some serious flannel. I’d also like to add that they looked absolutely exhausted, thus confirming my previously stated concerns about the jet lag.
While they sat on the edge of a cliff (metaphor much?), Jillian told Jason that he was amazing and they had such a connection and she was so grateful for their amazing connection, and she went on to say that she was looking for someone who could be her best friend. Jason responded by saying that he felt like he could be friends with her forever, but then he told us (apparently Jason thinks we’re all REALLY CLOSE FRIENDS) that he didn’t know if there was any passion between them.
So they met for supper in some abandoned building and Jason said AGAIN (just to us. not to Jillian. I think he trusts us, y’all.) that he didn’t know if they have a romantic connection. Jillian said that everytime she’s with Jason it exceeds her expectations, at which point I wanted to climb through the TV, tap her on the shoulder and say, Hey, Jill – do you mind if I call you Jill? – PRODUCERS PLAN THESE OUTINGS. If you make it to Seattle, it’s gonna be lots of Wendy’s Value Menu and some DVR’d episodes of “30 Rock.” Don’t kid yourself, sister.
Then they went back to the fantasy suite where we were subjected to waaaay too much footage of them in the hot tub.
(Is anybody else noticing that whereas people on The Bachelor used to pretend like they were just going back to the fantasy suite for drinks or something, now the people on the show are much more vocal about why they’re going back to the hotel room?)
(IT MAKES ME SO UNCOMFORTABLE.)
(And if you’re under the age of eighteen and reading this, you need to know that the reason they’re going back to that hotel room is to play board games.)
The next date was Molly, and the first thing I noticed was that she ran like crazy toward Jason and he pretty much stood still.
Molly and Jason went bungee jumping, an activity that gave Molly lots of opportunities to make puns (“we’re taking a leap of faith together”) as well as analogies (“it’s like we’re going through something scary together, but we have each other to lean on”). And also: “[Bungee jumping] was really like falling in love. You’re sitting on the edge. You’re scared. And then you just have to let go and do it.”
Well said, Molly. Well said.
Afterwards they had coffee and Molly pulled out a long list of questions, a move that was nothing short of brilliant since we all know how much guys like to have an endless barrage of questions fired at them. Molly was quick to point out that she was saving one question for later (WHAT COULD IT POSSIBLY BE? SURELY IT DOESN’T HAVE ANYTHING TO DO WITH THE FANTASY SUITE, YOU CLEVER GIRL!).
And (sort of) seriously, I think what made me the most uncomfortable about the whole Q & A exchange is that it spotlighted the fact that Molly and Jason’s conversations are a little stilted and awkward. It seems like she isn’t willing to just let conversations happen, and tonight I kept thinking that watching Molly with Jason is like watching a girl act like she thinks she’s supposed to act in order to make a guy interested. That doesn’t really have “LONG TERM” written all over it.
Later that night “J” and “Mol” had dinner in front of a really large fireplace, and after about three different awkward silences, Jason broke out with an analysis of Molly’s family’s body language. Molly told Jason that she was falling in love with him, and about that time my husband – who was tapping away on his Blackberry and as far as I could tell not even watching the show – piped up and said, “Well, it’s pretty obvious that he’s not falling in love with her.”
YOU HEARD IT HERE FIRST, PEOPLE.
After dinner Molly pulled out her list of questions again, and I’m sure you were as surprised as I was when she used her final question – written in beautiful, painstakingly-crafted calligraphy – to ask Jason to go back to the fantasy suite. Personally I think that “Mol” is most comfortable when she’s in control, but Jason didn’t ask me so I couldn’t warn him. Anyway, they went back to the fantasy suite and put on their bathing suits and then climbed in a bath tub.
Which, as I’m sure we can all attest, is pretty much what every married couple in America does on a nightly basis.
Last but certainly not least in the fantasy date line-up was Melissa, and the first thing I noticed was THEY RAN TO EACH OTHER, IT’S TOTALLY A SIGN. I also noticed that Melissa used “Jason and I” incorrectly, so maybe these two really are destiny. “Her and I” loves “Jason and I.” It’s PERFECT.
The two lovebirds took a boat ride (has anyone else noticed that he always does stuff with her where they just hang out and spend time together?), and I loved how easily Melissa articulated what she was thinking and feeling (a Bachelor anomaly for sure). They talked a little bit about how Jason was disappointed that he hadn’t met her parents, but then he assured her that not meeting them doesn’t affect his feelings for her, so LET’S JUST MOVE ON NOW, M’KAY?
Jason grinned like crazy when he saw Melissa walking toward him for their nighttime date, and then they had dinner at some place with a bunch of red curtains. The Southern girl in me was tickled to death to see them actually eating their food and not just playing with it. After dinner they went back to the fantasy suite, and while normally I’m totally cheesed out by any fantasy suite shenanigans, that wasn’t as true this time because Melissa told Jason that she loved him and it was almost as good as “Notting Hill,” I promise. So naturally when Jason responded by saying that he was completely falling for her, I couldn’t help but worry that we’re in the midst of a major Bachelor fake-out.
I WILL BE SO ANGRY IF THAT HAPPENS, I CAN’T EVEN TELL YOU.
Before the rose ceremony Chris and Jason had their weekly therapy session, a part of the show that I have grown to adore. I like how Chris looks at Jason oh-so-earnestly and says, “So. How are you holding up?” and then Jason pours out his heart and I smile and wish that this season would never end. Once the therapy session was over, Chris told Jason that each girl had made “a very personal, private video message” – so private, in fact, that each message was only seen by Jason and the millions of people watching.
I adore reality television.
We didn’t really learn anything new in the videos, but I thought it was interesting that while Molly and Melissa professed their love, Jillian held back a little bit. And based on how often Jason said tonight that he’s looking for so much more than a best friend, I’m thinking maybe Jillian should have said more than how they would laugh a bunch together and enjoy lots of homecooked meals. And there’s not anything wrong with those things, of course – we just have to remember that Jason wants an amazing passionate connection with lots of passion that’s very amazing. And connecting.
Jason was pretty emotional at the rose ceremony (quick aside: I love Melissa, but what in the sam hill was she wearing?). However, he composed himself and gave the first rose to Melissa, which was really no surprise at all.
The second rose went to Molly, and WHAT DID I TELL YOU PEOPLE ABOUT JILLIAN NOT SAYING ENOUGH IN THE VIDEO?
(Seriously. I have to bring it up again. WHAT was Melissa wearing? Were there rhinestone hearts on the back of that dress? And some scallops?)
After Jillian left Jason had to sit down on a bench and compose himself while I wondered why there were two frilly purple pillows (with trim!) on a bench that was totally exposed to the elements. Jason said he was falling for Jillian but not in love with her, so I guess he was falling into like? Into friendship? Into I-know-I-only-want-to-be-with-Melissa-so-getting-rid-of-Jillian-will-make-the-final-decision-even-easier?
The previews for the next two weeks were such BONAFIDE GOLD that I’m going to have to watch them about six more times, and while I don’t have any idea why the “After the Final Rose” show has the potential to be “so dramatic and so emotionally difficult,” you can rest assured that I won’t get a good night’s sleep until I find out.
So farewell, Jillian. We all thought you were adorable. If it’s any consolation, you had on the best dress tonight and your hair has never looked better.
And finally, Jill – do you mind if I call you Jill? – I’d like to leave you with this:
Though your tears fall like rain.
And you no doubt feel pain.
True love you will attain.
I’ll say it aGAIN and aGAIN.
Like a refrain.
[stay with the pausing for impact]