Women in baseball. Is it far-fetched? Let’s compare swim caps to ball caps: Katie Ledecky to Ginny Baker.
If a jocular pat on the behind after a good inning (episode one) was all women need overcome to play ball, one of us would be kissing necklaces, counting steps, and spitting sunflower seeds by now. But other hurdles antagonize us.
Athletchic is first to commend—celebrate!—the birth of Ginny Baker into the MLB on Fox’s new Thursday night prime-time show Pitch. Sure, she’s tall, dark, and stunningly beautiful (we are still talking TV here) but she brings with her a plethora of real-life problems that might occur if a woman suited up. And that’s a pretty big if.
If a woman can play ball. Can she? We can’t look at all the angles to that question but let’s look at a blaring few.
Pardon the pun but do we have the balls to play? Technically no. Figuratively, yes. Our hearts, lungs and muscles may be smaller, but today science constantly raises the bar. Better training, equipment, and nutrition make us bigger, stronger, faster.
Disagree? I challenge your opinion with two words: Katie Ledecky.
I know. Good as she is, her 3:56:46 in the 400 freestyle still lags 16 seconds behind the men’s record. But hear me out. There are 30 MLB teams (I think you know where I’m going) with rosters of 25 (I could debate that number but don’t need to) for a total of 750 male athletes playing professional ball. So let’s take balls out of the scenario (and at the same time leave them in) and convert those players to swimmers. Teams of 25 swimmers on 30 teams swimming the 400 freestyle and guess who shows up as number 311 on the men’s list at http://www.fina.org/content/swimming-world-ranking right between good old Alex and Eric?
You got it. Our man Katie.
In fact, look further. I hate to be the bearer of bad news to the Archie Bunkers of men’s baseball, but that puts her way above Ginny Baker’s fifth-on-the-roster spot. Hell, a few torn rotator cups of team mates and Ledecky is in the starting line-up.
So move on to a second hurdle.
How’s the timing? Is Prime Time the right hour for a story about a profession female ball player?
Baseball is all about timing. Stepping up to the plate, swinging the bat to meet the pitch perfectly, tagging home plate before the ball slips into the catcher’s mitt. Does Fox earn a run?
Athletchic encourages more women and girls to get behind Ginny Baker. We feel she’s arrived on the mound at just the right time. If you don’t think so, we challenge your opinion with one word. Hillary.
With public audiences drooling over Hill versus Donnie reality TV (oh wait, strike reality), what’s a little girl-meets-boy on-the-pitcher-mound saga? Fox couldn’t have timed this show better if they tried. It seems orchestrated from the upper deck. And if you feel the possibility of having a female president in 2016 doesn’t prove perfect timing then let’s mention Mo’ne Davis. (Athletchic isn’t sure she wasn’t the inspiration behind this story.)
Years ago, a little girl didn’t have the opportunity to play ball like the boys. She grew up on the sidelines tangled in ribbons while boys logged precious minutes, hours, days on the field. Don’t think that doesn’t count. How many families taunting boys with major league potential didn’t pack bags for those snowball prodigies and send them south for winter to spend more time with a girl’s best friend? (Don’t even tell me you didn’t get that.) Time spent in the diamond is everything.
Fox’s Pitch is the story of a girl, Ginny, with a talent, pitching. She has the balls to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the boys and play major league baseball. She’s fifth on the roster, and her feminism may have saved her from a trip back to the minor leagues, but sometimes physicality and punctuality has to be brushed aside and an exception made. Because on this television show, out in the stands, little girls sitting in bleachers have tossed out their Cinderella costumes for Ginny Baker costumes. They wave signs that say “Go Ginny” with thoughts of “it could be me” dancing in their heads.
And out in TV land, little girls sit on couches, wearing Nike sneakers, drinking coke, and responding to their brothers when they say, “that could never happen,” with a hard, cold, determined and strong, “don’t be so sure.”
What could be better than that?
Thanks Fox. Girls? Let’s get behind Ginny Baker and support Pitch.
_____________________________________________________________________________ Cyndie Zahner is a freelance writer. Follow her on Instagram @athletchicz or Twitter @tweetyz.
Is this concept far-fetched? A woman playing professional baseball?
If you answer yes, then ask yourself what the responses would have been 100 years ago to this question: Is this concept far-fetched? A woman president?
I thank my lucky stars times are changing. I am the mother of three strong children. Two are girls and today those two girls have so much opportunity it would make my grandmother’s head spin.
But I digress, back to baseball.
Pitch is the new “what if?” series on Thursday night. What if a girl made it to the MLB? What if a teammate hit her on the butt after she had a good inning? What if the crowds got behind her just because she was a woman? What if she was named an all-star, not because she was deserving, but because she was the only woman to make it to the major leagues?
Starting to sound familiar? If not, you aren’t a news junkie glued to the presidential election like me.
This prime-time show has been timed perfectly. It isn’t merely about pitching and batting. It’s about women. Struggle. And Life. Its name, two-fold. It pitches the story of female pitcher Ginny Baker and the concept of a woman submerged in a man’s world. Which one of us hasn’t walked that baseline?
As if a girl playing baseball wasn’t a big enough dream, last night producers elected Ginny to the MLB all-star team. Clearly she wasn’t the best candidate—but she was a girl. And girls have dreams. And dreams pay big at the box office. So regardless of how skilled (qualified mind you) she was, the voting crowds of baseball fans checked her name (on the ballot) and Ginny became an all-star.
I’d like to stay out of politics but this is way too tempting. Fiction assimilating reality. Pitch comes at a time when we girls need to dream big.
I listened as Michelle Obama spoke yesterday with the emotion and poise of a woman who knows her place and importance in history. One who doesn’t want our world to take the slightest step backwards for our girls. So she’s encouraging a vote for Hilary. I envisioned she and her girls, later that evening, sitting down to watch all the news reels about the elections and her perfectly executed speech and happening across the silly little drama series of a female pitcher who dared to dream big. I think she’d like it.
I’ll be blunt because I can. I’m not crazy about Hillary. She will never understand my middle-class trials. I hate her hand in Benghazi, cringe about her emails, and worry she’ll open the borders and ask the middle class working souls to pick up the tab. Political analysts will crucify me for this but at 59 years old, I’ll blame this skeptical opinion on my upbringing: The Republican Party protects the rich. The Democratic Party protects the rich and the poor. No matter what promises they make to us, we middle-classers are left standing alone, fending for ourselves.
Case in point: I hear Chelsea Clinton came to my hometown. She flew in and out for a $250 per plate luncheon. Didn’t speak to a soul other than those she was paid to speak to. It saddened me. I’m so proud of Hillary and Chelsea as they trudge down the line, stamping a path to make future travel for women easier. But I can’t help but feel the Clintons think they’re above the rest of us. Too good for us.
Still, I’m voting for Hillary Clinton. Why? Well because I am a woman and the mother of two woman, and the alternative? I can’t possibly go there—take that step (or maybe even a giant leap) backwards.
Hillary may not go down in history as the best president, but she won’t be the worst. Likewise, she may not be the best role model (I’ll never condone staying with a man who has cheated on you countless times) but she won’t be the worst. She’ll take her spot in history, well, because it’s time for this story. Just like it’s time for Ginny to play ball.
I love Pitch. It’s so fictitious, it’s almost real.
Cyndie Zahner is a freelance writer and faithful fan of Pitch. Follow her on Twitter @Tweetyz and Instagram @athletchicz.
Who’s your favorite? Tell me which Modern Family personality lures you to the TV, and I can tell you more than you want to know about yourself. If you’re favorite character is:
Joe: You are cute, endearing, lovable, the apple of your mother’s eye, the favorite child, sweet, and a cuddler. People tend to take care of you.
You are more likely to end up living in your parent’s basement than your siblings. You should marry young. The good looks and lustrously thick mane of your tween years will perish. You will blossom into a bald surfer in a tight wet suit by forty.
Lily: You are down to earth, smart, perceptive, blunt, sarcastic, easily annoyed, and curt. You are extremely intelligent but won’t bother yourself with deep thinkers. You continually come to the defense of the underdog. No one dare take advantage of you.
Everything in your life will revolve around how you see other people. When you are done with someone, nothing they say or do will reprieve them. People will fight for your friendship because you are quick to say things others only think. Everyone will fear what you think of them. You will chuckle when people fall down, flash a finger when they give advice, and go to bed if you think a family discussion will ensue. You will have great altruistic moments and help anyone—until they say something stupid.
Luke: You are kind, light hearted, easy-going, playful, tolerant, impressionable, unreflective, and barely ever become angry. Clothes, housing, and money don’t matter to you. Only toys matter. You love a good dunce cap—which you believe are NASA designed.
Don’t waste money on an education. You are gullible. You know people roll their eyes behind your back, but you think they’re inferring you’re well rounded. You love to perform because lots of people cheer for your magic act, but secretly they’re just hoping you’ll disappear. You tell dumb jokes, believe spelling bees sting, and think the FBI fights bad Indians.
Manny: You are polished, patriotic, old-fashioned, sophisticated, well-bred, eccentric, and an old soul. You dress impeccably and talk eloquently. You love history, reading glasses, caviar, and your mama. Popularity is unimportant to you. You are comfortable in your own skin, a Brioni suit or Prada, and leotards. You believe team spirit is bringing a cow bell to a chess game.
You will always use the proper fork, know the brand names of posh décor, drink tea with your pinky up, and be the butt of nerd jokes. You’ll never win a popularity contest, and your name will never appear on any ballot—ever. You’ll be prone to long walks (alone), depression (from falling short of philosophical goals), and gout (from rich foods). Your mama will always love you.
Alex: You are punctual, studious, intelligent, balanced, and a perfectionist. You attract stupid people and are therefore the family matriarch/patriarch by proxy. Sugar is your forename.
Work hard. You are destined to support family members.
Haley: You are creative, personable, sexy, attractive, airy, and most often unambitiously employed. Finding yourself means surfing the web for your picture, drinking sensibly implies sipping latte during class, and staying on the wagon means continuing to pester your parents about a car.
Purchase expensive skin products and stay out of the sun. Your looks are going to be important. Find a superficial job and a sugar momma/daddy.
Mitchell: You are empathetic, capable, caring, companionly and meticulous. You are always out of sorts. And sports. You have two left feet and believe ribbon dancing is a contact sport.
You’re gay. It’s fine. Get over it.
Cameron: You are imaginative, colorful, benevolent, challenging, ebullient and dramatic. You have a flare for not knowing what you’re incapable of. Strangers think you’re crazy.
Never wear a clown outfit. People will shoot you. Don’t coach, you’ll get fired. Talk as little as possible, you contradict yourself. Don’t listen to idle gossip, it’s about you. Leave interior decorating to the professionals. It dates you. Never wear pink (self-explanatory).
Gloria: You are observant, captivating, passionate, protective, high-strung, combative, and stubborn. You are attractive but dangerously argumentative. People don’t understand what the hell you are talking about.
You will make great first impressions, but should not stick around long enough for people to form seconds. Acquaintances will hide when they see you coming. Friends won’t answer the door when you ring the doorbell, and your parents may deny you. Your fair face will appear on both NRA and Citizens Against NRA rest-my-case posters. Shoot in the air, stripes weight you.
Jay: You are farsighted, sober, outspoken, abrasive, and cantankerous. You avoid talkative people and colonoscopies.
You are very lucky. Quit while you are ahead.
Claire: You are intense, energetic, family-oriented, competitive, vivacious, and devious. You believe you are in control and consider yourself a clever practical joker—even when you’re not.
You will have great ambition in life. After much persistence, you will succeed, or semi-succeed, in your career, but “I’m an idiot” sticky notes will always find their way to the back of your suit coat. You will constantly vie for co-worker’s approval but often serve as the butt of their jokes. Halloween and yoga shooting days will not become you. Lying will be your demise. Never run a marathon. You’re competitive nature is Rosie Ruez like.
Phil: You are fun, sporting, loyal, curious, sentimental, and as profound as you are trivial. You are afraid of heights, don’t go in the water above your ankles, and think living dangerously is not wearing your seatbelt. You shoot for the stars with a BB gun, wear flannel socks with water shoes, and suffer from cleithrophobia.
You are very ill and probably won’t live to see another day. You believe your mother was a Russian spy and your father, a descendent of Houdini. Most of the time there is someone following you.
Cyndie Zahner is a freelance writer. She never misses Modern Family. Her favorite character is Gloria. Tell her who you love on Twitter @tweetyz or Instagram @athletchicz.
Shame on you Ben! I’m-a-mommy Amanda should have gone home last week!
It was hometown Monday and Ben travelled to meet the families of I’m-a-Mommy Amanda, Don’t-know-if-I-love-him Caila, Nojo and LB. Here’s what happened:
The Laguna Beach I’m-a-Mommy Home-Town Date
Everyone gets a little teary-eyed when I’m-a-mommy Amanda runs to meet her two precious little girls—Kinsley and Charlie. This is the longest she’s been away from them. They have a great day at the beach—picnic, dig in the sand, play tag, and Ben says it feels natural. All goes well until the ride home and bedtime when cute little Charlie cries, and I’m-a-mommy has to tuck her in bed screaming.
At the meeting with the family, Ben admits it’s been a long day but says this relationship is real (one). He looks exhausted and the family wonders if he is ready for kids. Dad says Ben looks like a deer in the headlights.
I’m-a-mommy admits to her mom that she hasn’t been able to date anyone seriously because her girls come first. She was embarrassed over her divorce. But she is falling in love with Ben. She cries and Bachelor Nation realizes this is one great mom, a sweet girl, and we don’t want to see her get hurt.
Amanda says Ben was wonderful. They kiss good bye and we are on to:
LB and the Portland, Oregon Home Town
LB admits she’s in love with Ben. She shows him around Portland, takes him to the whiskey library (cool), and Ben admits he was afraid she was going to elect to go home on her own, but he’s so glad she didn’t.
He meets the family and LB’s sister asks tough questions, says LB gets quickly invested, and she is worried she will get hurt. Ben wins her over with tears (cry card), and LB’s sister surmises he really cares. He talks with Dad. Dad says they are a close family, and this is the longest they’ve been away from LB. Ben says his world stopped when he first met Lauren (pretty sure you gave Cankles that first rose) and that this is real (Déjà vu two).
They kiss and we are off to:
The Quaint-little-Hudson-Ohio Hometown with Caila
I-don’t-know-if-I-love-him Caila takes Ben for a stroll through a park, tells him she envisioned herself sitting on a park bench there with the man she loved, calls him bench-worthy, and they sit, talk and move on to Caila’s daddy’s toy factory. He’s the CEO.
Ben loves the toy factory. He and Caila design a play house and help with its construction. Ben sees Caila with a power tool and in a hard hat and says he never knew a toy factory could be so sexy. He kisses her (all in) and then RUINS Athletchicz’s favorite movie ending (Officer and a Gentleman) by carrying Don’t-know out of the toy factor in her hard hat (instead of a Navy flight cap) while everyone applauds (corny).
We move on to meet Willy Wonka and the fam.
Willy tells Ben he loves his wife’s Puerto Rican heritage, says Ben will too if he ends up with Caila, and makes an odd remark that The Bachelor has a a microwave frame (Wonka weird). He says meeting four sets of parents must be tough for Ben. Ben agrees. Dad says marriage is a commitment, but if you find the right person, you never regret it.
Mom makes a Puerto Rican meal to die for, then takes Caila asides to chat. Mom is sweet, supportive, tells Caila she likes Ben, and that if Caila loves Ben, she should go downstairs, jump in his arms, and tell him.
When Mom is alone with Ben she tells him that Caila has very high standards. Ben says Caila admitted she wasn’t sure she could fall in love. He’s worried.So we all sit on the edge of our seat when they kiss good bye, hoping Caila tells Ben she loves him. She doesn’t. She can’t, and we come away as we always do—feeling Ben loves her, but she can’t decide if she loves him.
Then we are on to:
The Don’t-Let-Your-Brothers-Kick-My-Ass NoJo Dallas Hometown Date
Producers make us think Ben has sent Nojo flowers which makes us wonder if he likes her more than the other girls. BUT the flowers are from an ex-boyfriend (wonder how much producers paid for that perfectly-timed bouquet). Nojo calls her ex on her cell. A teary-eyed exchange ensues. And when Ben arrives he knows something is going on. She talks to him. He says he is confused, but Nojo reassures him her past relationship is over. She’s falling in love with Ben.
Then all hell breaks loose in Texas when Ben meets the fam.
Nojo’s two older brothers look like they want to beat the crap out of Ben. They are so protective of her that they make the entire evening uncomfortable. They take Ben aside and put him on the spot by asking if their sister is going to get hurt. They are skeptical. Say she deserves better. Ben has three other girls. They accuse him of being coached, but Ben insists it is real (three) (coached).
Nojo talks to mom. Says she is falling in love, and she doesn’t want to get hurt. She’s scared. Mom says fight for Ben.
Dad talks to Ben. Ben does a song and dance and dad ends up saying he trusts Ben.
Big brothers grill Nojo. She makes the mistake of telling them she has only been on two alone dates with Ben, and the brothers go berserk. They ask how she can be in love already. Say she deserves better. She is more invested in Ben than he is in her, and they lecture her, at length, not to sell herself short. (Go brothers!) They tell her she always thinks less of herself, but that she is actually better than Ben.
Everyone congregates back in the kitchen and the entire scene turns ugly. Ben can’t win over the brothers. They say he is manipulating. Nojo is going to get hurt. She’s way more invested than he is, and it becomes so uncomfortable that Mom picks up the Champaign and begins chugging it right from the bottle.
Ben asks the camera: Am I that evil? Producers switch to the kiss goodbye and we move on to:
The I’m-in-Big-Trouble Rose Ceremony
We can see it as soon as Ben enters to pass out roses. He’s terrified. He loves two girls: LB and Don’t-know-if-I-love-him Caila. Now he has to send either Amanda or Nojo home.
If he sends Amanda home, he’s a jerk. If he sends Nojo home, he gets his ass kicked.
And the roses go to: LB (of course), I-love-her-but-I-don’t-know-if-she-loves-me Caila, and then (wet his pants), he has to give the rose to Nojo so he doesn’t find himself wrapped in a knap sack and being stuffed in the trunk of a car in some back alley.
Athletchic was RIGHT. Ben wasn’t one hundred percent sure he was going to end up with Amanda last week and he should have done the kind thing and sent her home before he met her girls. Yes, Ben, you are turning out to be a jerk. You were selfish. Now, not only does Amanda feel rejected—even worse—she feels you rejected her two beautiful girls.
Here’s what Athletchic thinks will happen:
Ben is going to hire body guards and send Nojo home next week. At the final rose ceremony, he is going to send Caila home and then before he asks LB to marry him, he is going to cry and say he really loves Caila. After that, we don’t know. We just know Ben should have kept Becca last week and sent I’m –a-mommy home. (Karma.)
What do you guys think?
Cyndie Zahner is a freelance writer and trying to remain a The Bachelor fan. Follow her on Twitter @Tweetyz and Insagram @athletchicz.
If you missed it, you missed the best send off in Bachelor history! Oleevia goes HOME. Applauds from Bachelor Nation can be heard around the world. Ok well at least around the country.
Last week’s cliff hanger had us hoping Oleevia was going home but fairly certain she wasn’t. And Ben didn’t send her away at that rose ceremony. Here’s how the big night went:
The Rose Ceremony
Ben pulls Oleevia aside and confronts her about her Ms. Jekyll (in front of Ben) and Ms. Hyde (in front of the girls) personality. She temporarily redeems herself by blaming all her idiosyncrasies on the jealousy of the other girls. She says they are into painting their nails, and she is into reading books and “talking smart things.” (Ok Einstein.) She even squeezes out a few tears, so Ben brings her back to the ceremony, rose in hand.
The other girls sigh as they realize she isn’t going home. And then Oleevia flaunts her staying power at her interview by saying the other girls tried to trip her up, but she welcomes the competition. She says, “Come at me bro,” and Bachelor Nation cringes.
Then the roses go to: Caila, LB, Nojo, Imbeccable Becca, What-am-I-doing-here Leah, and TwinEm. Still-don’t-know-who-she-is Jen goes home, and we are on to the first date.
The I-Don’t-Know-if-She-Loves-Me-or-Loves-Me-Not, One-on-One Date
There is no other way to put it. We have no clue if Caila likes Ben.
It begins with a great boat ride. They jump in the water and Ben kisses Caila, but she’s not all in (replay it, she wasn’t). Ben says he has only seen the fun and smiling Caila and wants to know the deep Caila.
Caila sounds confused that she received a second one-on-one date and admits some of the other girls were upset. Ben says who, but she won’t tell. (Smart.)Then at the evening date, it gets so confusing that we have to replay it only to become even more confused. She says she feels like she loves him but her greatest fear is she can’t fall in love and she is afraid she might hurt him. (Huh?) After that, well, go back and listen to it yourself because she did a song and dance and Ben gave her the rose, but we still aren’t sure whether she likes him or just wanted to finish out the vacation in the Bahamas.
On to the:
The Swim-with-the-Pigs Group Date
LB, Imbeccable Becca, Nojo, I’m-a-mommy Amanda, Kinderlauren and Leah go to swim with the pigs. Weird. Awkward. We are fairly certain producers are clamoring for group date ideas. Becca‘s afraid. Nojo gets pig-chased and nearly mauled, the girls squeal louder than the pigs, and Ben slips away, a little too long, with LB.
He spends so much time with her that he ruins the group date. I’m-not-sure-why-I’m-still-here Leah breaks down completely, and Ben pulls Becca away to try and find out what went wrong and how he can patch it up. She’s kind. Says its hard. He reassures her. Kisses her. Says he wants to be fair and then takes a turn kissing and reassuring all of the other girls, so everyone wonders who the heck he is going to send home at this week’s rose ceremony.
Then the mistake that sends girls home season after season occurs. Leah throws LB under the bus—big time. Later, when LB is crying, Leah lies and says it wasn’t her. The girls console LB. Ben gives Mommy Amanda the rose and then walks off ignoring LB’s teary-eyed stare. We think it is over.
Back at the hotel, the girls figure out Leah bad mouthed LB. But they don’t confront her because she takes off to Ben’s room and asks how he is doing. She says she wouldn’t use her time to talk about someone else and that she doesn’t want to throw LB under the bus. Then she shoves her, kicks her, gets in the bus and drives back and forth over her until LB is unrecognizable. But the bus backfires. (Do these girls not watch prior seasons?) He sends her home, and we are thankful because we cannot take a second bachelorette as wicked as Come-at-me-bro Oleevia. Which brings us to our next date:
The Two-on-One Oleevia-Versus-TwinEm Date
They boat through rough seas to an island. Right away, Ben steals Oleevia for alone time and she says: My love is growing. I feel good. I’m an introvert. At peace with myself. Grounded. In tune with my body. Intimidating. I am who I am. Deep. I like intellectual “things” (go-to noun). Like what? Ben asks, looking confused. Then she breaks out the L word and he seems to fall for it.
Next Ben takes TwinEm for alone time. She looks gorgeous: hair cascading, blue eyes shining. Cute, fun Em materializes and Ben says he wants to get to know her but when he takes her back, he picks up the rose and asks Oleevia if he can talk to her.
That’s when it happens. The BEST SEND OFF ever. He tells her he’s sending her home, leaves and producers make her stand on the rocky edge of the island crying while Ben goes back, gives the rose to Em and boats away with her. The camera drifts away and we watch Oh-no-I’m-going-home Oleevia stand motionless amid the raging seas. She’s aghast, appalled, sobbing, repenting, crying and honestly I can’t even describe how desolate and forlorn it was—it was so humiliating that even Athletchic felt bad for her.
However, we did move happily on to:
The Rose Ceremony
Here’s the thing. There are only nice girls left now. Chris Harrison comes in (always bad news) and says Ben doesn’t want a party. He knows what he is going to do. He enters looking sheepish, hands out the roses to Imbeccable Becca, Nojo and LB, and Kinderlauren goes home.
Then producers flash glimpses of future scenes. Ben’s crying because he is in love with two women and we are sure he is because, maybe for the first time ever, a Bachelor has gotten it right. He’s kept the nice girls.
Ben—boring but beautiful.
Can’t wait for next week. GO BECCA!
Cyndie Zahner is a freelance writer and The Bachelor enthusiast. Follow her The Bachelor tweets on Twitter @tweetyz or on Instagram @athletchic.com.
GI Jubilee goes home, Oh-please-leave Olivia gets a rose and the others throw their vulnerability cards on the table. If you didn’t tune in last night, that’s what you missed.
The drama opens with the girls arriving in Mexico. Oleavia toasts love, insists Ben doesn’t validate the other girls like he does her (huh?), and says she and Ben have a love language. She’s sure she’s getting a one-on-one date, but then has to pout in the corner when I’m-a-mommy Amanda gets the date.
The Put-All-the-Eggs-in-One-Basket, Like, One-on-One Date
Ben pops in on the girls at 4:30 in the morning looking for Amanda. She has 15 minutes to get ready. But unlike many of the other girls, she already looks great. She ventures out with Ben while Oleavia and Kindergarten Lauren say they don’t think she is coming back.
But I’m-a-mommy and Ben take off in a hot air balloon and quickly become acquainted. I’m-a-mommy says she can’t stop smiling. She’s having an amazing day. Ben says he likes being around her. And we all begin to fall in love with Mommy except for two things: her like factor and her déjà vu voice. (Does Ben not hear this?) Like this, like that, like every other word is like because she is like nervous and like we want to stop counting how many times she says like and pay attention to what she is saying, but like, we just can’t. And then, we start thinking she sounds like someone we know, and we realize it is last season’s Whitney and her Is-your-mommy-home voice. We turn down the volume. (Drat! We liked her.)
Ben doesn’t seem to mind. She tells him about her marriage. Her husband cheated on her (vulnerability card). He didn’t want to be in her girl’s lives (bad-daddy card). She was heartbroken, and Athletchic wants so badly to feel bad for her but even with the sound down we still count likes. And (OMG) then Ben starts throwing likes, and we turn the sound completely off.
He gives I’m-a-mommy the rose and we are happy. Really were are. He kisses her (all in), and we turn the volume up, ready for the group date.
This-Is-the-Way-to-a-Man’s-Heart Group Date
GI Jubilee, ImBECCAble Becca, Nojo (can’t take credit for this, my friend’s daughter Olivia—good Olivia—gets credit for both this and the Oleavia tag), Cute Caila, Twin Em, LB, Not-much-air-time Leah, Can’t remember-her Jennifer and Oleavia.
They are off to a classroom to learn Spanish, to the market to buy food and to the kitchen to cook a Mexican meal. They pair up and right off the bad there is a tug between Oleavia and GI Ju for Ben. Oleavia wins and GI walks off with her tail between her legs to partner with LB, but does get in a shoulder shove as she passes Oleavia (rerun it, she does).
Jen and Twin Em pair up. Jen says Em’s palate hasn’t advanced past the kids’ menu. Em wants to punch Oleavia in the mouth and says Ben made a b-line for the mint because Oleavia has bad breath. Oleavia says she and Ben are on a high. In the end, Em and Jennifer get a not so great for their Mexican dish, Caila and Leah get a great, Nojo and Becca get an ok, Ben and Olivia get a not ok, and GI and LB win accolades from the chef.
Ben says he is no longer the bachelor. He’s the spatulor. (Sad.)
On the evening date, Olivia pulls Ben away first (as usual) and brags on camera about her Ben-giddy smile, Ben’s passion and her pitiful self while it’s GI’s turn to pout in the corner. Twin Em interrupts Oleavia’s time with Ben. The others meet with him and Ben ends up kissing all of them, especially LB (can’t take his hands off her). He sends GI Jubilee home.
You got that right. GI went home. Ben said she always pulls away from him. She wasn’t fun today. She says its hard. She pleads for affection. But he wants to be honest. He’s not feeling it anymore. Then he sends her packing and sits down on the stairs and cries.
Back in the room, he barely explains that he sent GI home when Nojo jumps at him for alone time to play the console card. Then she plays her my-boyfriend-dumped-me vulnerability card. Ben says it was hard sending GI home, and that he’s done breaking up with people. Nojo reminds him he has 10 more to go.
Then—sadly—the rose goes to someone that Ben says he has reconnected with, Oleavia, and Athletchic hollers into the TV that he doesn’t know what he is doing. Oh-just-leave Oleavia immediately starts flaunting and taunting her good fortune. She’s not going to rub it in the other girls’ faces, but Ben is hers (rub, rub).
When Athletchic is done gaging in the bathroom, we move on to the next one-on-one.
The Let’s-Design-a-Life-Together One-on-one Date
Ben and Kindergarten Lauren try on clothes at a retail store, then find out that they will be modeling in a fashion show.
They do awesome in the show, and then spend the evening dinner on a roof top. Kinderly brings up his sending Jubilee home and says it was noble of him (careful). Then she throws her my-boyfriend-of-four-years-cheated-on-me vulnerability card out but says on her last birthday she decided she could choose to be happy or to be a victim. She chose to be happy (homerun). Ben said he has seen a new side of her and is more attracted to her. He kisses her, gives her the rose, and they are serenaded by a street harpist—no big concert or romantic dancing–which makes us believe that, maybe, she was supposed to go home but Ben changed his mind.
We go pensively to what we think is going to be the rose ceremony.
The Oh-No-There-Isn’t-Going-to-be-a Rose Ceremony
The girls are scared. It’s over whelming. Oh-just-leave Olivia is relentless. The girls hate her. Ben comes in and the evening goes like this:
Nojo gets alone time and tells him she likes him a lot and does not want to be blindsided. Ben promises her she won’t be, so she knows she’s not going home. They kiss.
LB has time with him and reassures him she cares. They kiss. She’s in.
Oh-just-leave Olivia tells I’m-a-mommy Amanda that she feels like she’s watching an episode of teen mom. Mommy gets offended (rightly). Oleavia apologizes and tries to squeeze out a few tears. Twin Em gets so mad she does the throw-the-other-girl-under-the-bus thing with Oleavia. Ben starts asking the other girls about Oleavia. Mommy throws her under the bus, We-still-don’t-know-who-she-is Jen throws her under the bus, and Twin Em sobs on the phone to her sister Twin Hay, who was dumped by Ben last week, as if she’s going to get some sympathy.
Then, Ben says he wants to talk to Oh-just-leave Oleavia before he passes out roses. All the girls are giddy with hope he’s taking her rose away, but Oleavia redeems herself and then the absolute worst thing happens:
TO BE CONTINUED flashes across the screen, and we realize there isn’t going to be a rose ceremony. Revengefully, we click to watch Vanderpump Rules instead of The Bachelor Live.
Take that, producers, take that.
Cyndie Zahner is a freelance writer and a hopeless The Bachelor addict. Follow her on Instagram @athletchicz or Twitter @TweetyZ.
The Kardashian Keep Up
Is Kendall Jenner pregnant? Tonight, hear the Kardashian’s side of the Lamar Odom hospitalization. The girls plan Kris Jenner’s 60th birthday party. And Scott Disick checks himself into rehab. Get all the latest on last nights episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashian’s, here on the Kardashian Keep Up: