Monday, March 25, 2013

Amazing Race 22, Episode 6

I figured this would be a Non-Elimination Leg when the PitStop was out in the middle of nowhere. Its almost always a Non-Elimination Leg when the last team in would have to stick around with everyone else, for god knows how long, after they're out.

Max and Katie are tiresome, but I knew that from the first time I saw them. My mother always told me that telling people you are "smart" is sort of like telling people you are "classy": if you have to tell them, then you're not.
I'd say they are keeping Katie's intelligence well under wraps, because their performance so far would certainly not alert anyone to it. Besides, superior intelligence has never seemed to me to be a huge advantage in this thing; I mean, the twin DOCTOR brothers on this went out in Leg 2 because they couldnt' swim, not because they couldn't quote the Periodic Table off the tops of their heads.

Good LORD but Joey is annoying! At first I was rolling my eyes at Katie's snotting about "we'd be enjoying this incredible, amazing, glorious plane ride over Africa if we were sharing it with anyone other than Meghan and Joey", but then I realized what sharing a plane with Joey would entail, and I actually felt a bit sorry for her. No doubt it was hard to focus on the scenery and the experience with Joey's helium voice squeaking and shrieking in an enclosed space.
I really, really  hoped he was going to actually mess his pants, while channelling Jerry Lewis.  I so wanted to see what the Kalahari bushmen made of that. He's such an attention whore, though, that I expect he makes the same sort of fuss if they use whole milk in his latte.

One of the best parts of the episode for me was when Joey was beating his narrow, pale chest and declaring himself the "Scorpion Hunting King", while the bushmen in the back were saying "he was really scared, huh?"

Making a fire out of nothing but sticks and animal droppings is incredibly difficult for people who are used to running water and real walls...I'm surprised anyone went for it. Have you ever watched "Survivor"? That show is practically all about making fire. I said I'd only go on "Survivor" after I've figured out how to start a fire with some damp sand and my own urine. I did like that Pam and Winnie said they were prepared for this race because "we watch a lot of TV." Maybe they watch "Survivor".

I hope for Wynona's sake that there are 5 more Roadblocks involving "Digging Shit Up", because so far, she can do that. Of course, her first reaction was "there's NO WAY I can do THAT", but she did. Wynona's constant whining about being old and slow and incapable is now just noise in the background to me.

Chuck is becoming more and more endearing to me....I love when people's actual life skills come into play on this thing. Build a trap? No problem, says Chuck, that was practially my day job in high school. Who else can say that? Certainly not Max, who seemed to think that maybe because he is a cigar salesman, he would be good at making fire, all the while dressed like he's off to pick up his new iPhone.

Did anyone ever say WHY they were hunting scorpions? Why anyone ever hunted scorpions? More importantly, who was the dude who said, you know, maybe if I put this scorpion in my mouth, something cool will happen?

And seriously, Katie? You complained about the smell? Really? What the hell is wrong with you?

Next week: Donkeys! Every episode is better with donkeys!

Until next week.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Amazing Race 22, Episode 5

Man, they really hated John, didn't they? They don't have the "Sleep, Eat, Mingle" time for teams after the PitStop anymore, so even with the small bit of John they got in airports and the like, everyone still figured out what an ass he was.

It's too bad Connor and Dave had to bow out, but they were living on borrowed time anyway, and besides, they went out having kicked some major ass, and on crutches, too. I'll bet they get the first call for the next All-Stars season.

One thing I am liking with Dave and Connor gone is that there is no one who is a shoe-in to win this thing now; anyone could win. Except Chuck and Wynona. They're not going to win.

I don't think I've ever seen a racer having a lousier time on this than Wynona. I get that she probably said she'd do it because Chuck wanted her to, and she also probably never thought she'd have to actually go, but here's the thing: she IS on the race, she does have the chance of a lifetime, and the only choice she has now is her attitude. Seriously, why couldn't she have done the Roadblock with the nice, 70's style, Socialist Propaganda Singers? Come on....she said she was afraid she couldn't run, but really? That "run" was only about 20 yards.
I think her strategy was to make Chuck do all the Roadblocks until they were eliminated, which she was hoping would be about Leg 2. She was looking forward to a nice hotel in Sequesterville with a swim-up bar and some mozzarella sticks.

And speaking of Socialist Propaganda Singers, (band name!), I have to admire anyone who can work the phrase "socialism is beautiful" into a song. Just try finding a rhyme with "socialism".

Pam and Winnie rocked this leg, I was impressed. Of course, I'm less impressed with them now that they like Max and Katie, but whatever. They did make fun of Max's tan at one point, so they still get some points from me. And Max and Katie are far less annoying now that they don't have time to put so much energy into twirling mustaches and tying young women to railroad tracks.

Why did the Blonds wander around whining "we don't know what we're doing"? Didn't they have a clue they could go back and read? I did like the Vietnamese version of Wizard Chess, that was very cool. I wonder if anyone actually plays chess like that.

Joey, and les so, Meghan, are tiresome, aren't they? They were very offended that everyone was making fun of John, who, lets face it, did one of the most boneheaded moves ever on this thing. Did they expect everyone to commiserate and sympathize with the guy?
Joey seems okay when he's not got his Gay Cheerleader persona on, but when he does that cartoon character voice and says things like "RAISE THE ROOF!!", and dials his mania up to 30,  I just want to slap him. I understand that Meghan was pissed about being U-Turned, but then she did it to someone else, so I think she can let the "ball of righteousness" go. And those stupid headbands and wacky legwarmers piss me right off, too.

Two momentst that were outstanding for me last night: The Vietnamese ladies at the market watching the "Westerners" staggering around with chickens, and laughing at them all buying the same stuff. And Chuck hugging the Vietnamese guy and yelling "mucho gracias!"

And now I want a big bowl of pho.

Until next week!


Monday, March 11, 2013

Amazing Race 22, Episode 4

This is late because I was away all day at a hair class out of town. I'm exhausted, and I was travelling ONE DAY, by CAR, in my own part of my own country. I can't imagine how tired those Racers must be.

I did not see that elimination coming, like, at all. That? Was a great big steaming pile of awesome. I really thought John and Jessica were going to be in this for the long haul, especially with that Express Pass in their back pockets. I think I can be forgiven for not seeing them getting eliminated with the Express Pass in their back pockets.
I noticed at the PitStop, John's babbling justification about how it was all okay was all about him....I don't need the money, I like the way I played, I wouldn't change a thing. Douchebag.

She did a good job of keeping her shit together on that mat, because I'd have melted down into a great big puddle of fury and possibly strangled him with my bare hands in front of the cameras.
He has "zero regrets"? To quote Phil, "REALLY?"

Phil was golden tonight...from his indignant "you cannot look at the surfboards" (I mean, the very idea! ) to his WTF look at John's "I don't need a million dollars", to that succinct "Oy vey" at the end. I was laughing so hard at all of that I had to rewind it a couple of times to enjoy it properly. (Also, he seemed kind of hurt when the Country Singers had no idea who was on that surfboard. Like, he took it personally.)

After Dave and Connor came in first, again, and on crutches, too, I don't think anyone with a shred of self-respect could ever quit this thing after them.

What does Mona mean "There's no crying in The Amazing Race!" ???? There's plenty of crying in the Amazing Race! That's one of the things I love about it! I really did sympathize with that one Country Singer when she said "can I just cry for a minute?" because I totally get what that's like.
Seriously, I've learned that it's my psyche's way of dealing with stress, and after a good cry, I'm pretty much all set to go again. I'd be bawling my way all over God's green earth if I was ever in this thing.

I think that random Indonesian guy is still scratching his head over the day the two loud Americans came into his yard, messed up all  his business, put a mint in his little grass basket, stole his sarong and then left as suddenly as they came.

Chuck's galloping all over that island, under rocks and into tunnels and through waves, was one of the highlights of this lef for me....that guy really puts his back into it, doesn't he? He had no idea where the hell he was going, but by God, he was going to get there or die trying.

I have to say, this season has some of the most noteworthy hair I've ever seen on this thing, and it's all from the men. Connor and Dave have some pretty lively hair, and John's spikey mop top was impressive, and I wish Anthony (or Bates, I have no idea who is who) has a horrible greasy, comb-over thing going on would get a haircut, because it's distracting, and Chuck, Chuck's hair is in a class all its own, not the least because it defies all natural laws.....did you see him on the Amazing Bathmat? His hair looked exactly the same as when he started this thing, like, it didn't even get wet or sweaty or anything.

Until next week!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Big Mistake.

On Saturdays, I don't really plan a dinner....usually everyone fends for themselves. Leftovers, scrambled eggs, something in the freezer, they all will do for "Suit Yourself Saturday".
Last night, as I was pulling out the frying  pan to make Sweet and Sour Tofu and Broccoli, Thing 2 was wondering what to have and whining about having to do it. (For the record, I offered to make her some Sweet and Sour Tofu, but she reacted like I'd offered her some Ebola virus for dinner.) I really didn't feel like making dinner myself, and half-jokingly said "why don't we go out to eat?" Thing 1 was working, the restaurant is just up the road, and Thing 2 has a rather alarming addiction to their Chicken Fingers and Fries, so once it was out of my mouth, I knew I'd have to follow up.
We put on some pants, (we were in our pajamas already. At 6 pm. Don't judge.) grabbed our purses and got in the car. We even got a parking spot right by the door. (This becomes relevant later.)

Thing 1 was delighted to see us. ("Oh, good", she said when she was us seated in her section, "I'm kind of busy and I can ignore you for a while.") She did eventually take our orders and serve us our food, all the while treating us with a minimum of courtesy, which was a pleasant break for her.

Thing 2 had her chicken fingers and fries, with a salad, and I opted for the Chicken Souvlaki with rice and Greek Salad. (I'm sure you will agree, a way better dinner than Sweet and Sour Tofu.)
Thing 1 offered Thing 2 some jello that had been "left out for a while, no one knows how long", and which was going to be thrown out so she could have it for free. The only thing Thing 2 likes better than chicken fingers and fries is free jello.

We enjoyed our dinner very much, and as we were leaving, we were talking and congratulating ourselves on having the good sense to abandon our previous plans and go out for dinner. The two of us walked towards our grey Chevy van, and hopped in.

As I went to put my purse in it's usual spot between the seats, I noticed that the junk-filled console that usually sits there was not there.....and when I looked behind me to see if it had somehow slid back towards the rear seat, it wasn't there either. And there was some paper I didn't recognize on the floor.....and a pink, sparkly article of clothing I'd never seen before......and how come the seats were down in the middle of the van?? As all this is running through my head, Thing 2 is still yaking away about our superior intelligence, when I blurt out "Wait a minute, is this our van?" Thing 2 looks at me like I've just started speaking Cantonese, and then looks around herself for a beat or two and then looks at me in horror and yells "NO!".

We sprung out of that van like it was on it's way to hell, and realized that OUR van was right beside this one, which was identical to ours. You never saw two women run so fast as the two of us, we jumped in that van like it was an Olympic event, and hightailed it out of that parking lot before anyone came out of the restaurant to accuse us of attempted theft and possible possession of illegal van.

After we stopped laughing long enough to form coherent sentances, Thing 2 said that she'd have figured it out sooner or later, "that other van smelled wrong".

Monday, March 4, 2013

Amazing Race 22, Episode 3

By my reckoning, those people started out at the PitStart the morning of Day 1, and didn't get to start on the tasks until the morning of Day 3. That? Has got to take a round out of you. Waiting in airports for days, and then having to wait another night before you get to the thing, while you're jumping out of your skin with anticipation, would be unpleasant. At least it game Dad on Crutches a bit of time to rest.

In all 22 seasons of this thing, I have never seen one "alliance" that made the difference between anyone winning and not. (Or "flirting", either.) It's not Survivor....targeting another team for elimination seems to make everyone feel like they are super-savvy players, but not much else. The U-Turn is the only way I've ever seen someone "targeted", and that's not usually used strategically, but rather to satisfy someone's adolescent dream of nailing it to a team then don't like.

Man, I freaking LOVE New Zealanders! First, the Zorb and now the shemozzle! Those guys could out-crazy even the Japanese, I think. I really, really hope that if I ever get to New Zealand, I am invited to cover myself in molasses and feathers, and slide into a pool of manure while holding some eggs, accompanied by a dog named Tim.
By the way, what was the point of the dog during that? I wonder if this is going to come up in the final leg.

I just knew Katie would be a supportive, kindly and encouraging partner. To be fair, Max didn't seem to be tempted to punch her in the throat at all. Maybe "you suck at this" works better for him than it would for me. Of course, I do enjoy that they are drifting along at the back of the pack, all the while reminding us of how awesome they are.

Please tell me that when Team Mullet went to Niagara Falls, they actually crossed the border into Canada, and didn't figure that staring across the river was close enough to being "out of the country".

I laughed out loud when the Master Fisherman commented on Dave still wearing his helmet while fishing. "They don't usually jump up out of the river at you."

I have to hand it to Dave, he is fast on those crutches. I think they are probably out very soon, but he gets huge props from me for even finishing another leg of the race, let alone coming in first. The last time I was on crutches, I had blisters on my hands and very sore armpits, and needed enormous quantities of chocolate to get through the day.

Really, it's rather remarkable that it's taken 22 seasons for someone to get majorly hurt during this, if you think about it. Considering all the jumping off things and running on docks and mountains and riding bikes in costumes and bungee-jumping in a straight-jacket, and such, it's a wonder there hasn't been more racers injured badly enough to have to quit.

I like the Hockey Players, although I wish they would hustle a bit more....the one guy's imitation of that douchy guy with the bandana really sealed the deal for me.

And in other news, Pam and Winnie got lost. Again.

Until next week, when we find out what actually happened this week!