Life Update: “M-I-C See Ya Real Soon…”

21 Jun

A couple blog posts ago I mentioned I had gotten behind in my episode recaps due to some craziness going on in my personal life. The past month has been full of ups and downs, knowns and unknowns but last week I received some news that is bringing about one of the biggest changes in my life.

Since 2008 I have lived in Orlando, Florida and have loved it. I started off working at Sun Sports/FOX Sports Florida and after that made the switch over to Walt Disney World. For the past 3 years (minus the hiatus I took to go on The Bachelor) I have absolutely loved working for Disney. Whether I was working with an awesome team in our Sports PR department or sprinkling pixie dust all over various Disney Parks social media channels, Disney has without a doubt given me incredibly memories. I mean, can you really call it work when you are sent out to drive a NASCAR stock car, go on a shopping spree, soar over Disney, spend an afternoon bass fishing, spoil your dog at a pet resort or learn about other cultures? I didn’t think so :)

Moving to Florida without knowing a single soul was pretty scary but I quickly managed to make some of my best friends.

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So it’s with some tears but great excitement that I am finally able to let everyone know I will be leaving the great state of Florida and moving to Atlanta! I have been given a incredible opportunity to work for a PR agency and handle PR for some of the big movie studios. This is such an exciting and nerve wracking time of my life but I have needed a change of pace and scenery and I think Atlanta may be just the ticket!

While I’m ready to hit the road and start in a new place, there are definitely some things I will miss about Florida…

1 – my friends that I consider family and their families that willingly “adopted” me

2 – being close enough to drive to see my favorite baseball team, the Tampa Bay Rays

3 – going to Disney fo’ free

4 – running over to a theme park at a moments notice on a bad day just to turn my mood around (Disney has a way of making you smile)

5 – my amazing co-workers

6 – being less than an hour away from the beach

7 – Barre 54 and their fun and friendly staff (I think Atlanta has a Pure Barre so joining there will be on my to-do list!)

8 – living in a tourist destination where all my friends and family don’t need convincing to visit

9 – being able to make someone’s day without having to do much because of my connection to Disney (it is incredible to see how a little Disney magic can totally turn someone’s life around)

10 – living in a state where all the top concerts come (I have to miss Luke Bryan and I already bought a ticket. And he already performed and isn’t returning to Atlanta. FML.)

There are so many more things I will miss but I know there are plenty of new and exciting experiences waiting for me in Atlanta. I think I’m most excited to officially return to the “real South,” as a friend of mine put it. After going to college in North Carolina, I consider myself somewhat of a southerner and now I will be a short drive away from my college friends in Charlotte, my alma mater in Chapel Hill and others sprinkled throughout the south.

After the 4th of July I will be a Georgian…Atlantan…Atlantian??? I’m not sure what I’ll be but I’ll be in Georgia! I’m excited to rendezvous with friends that live in the area, be minutes away from a ballpark (no, I will NOT abandon my Rays but since the Braves are in the NL AND they spring train at Disney, I kind of already have a little liking towards them) and start a new journey! Until then, I will be making my way through all my favorite Florida places and enjoying them while I can. If anyone has Rays tickets just sittin’ around, waiting to be used feel free to let me know ;) I gotta see my boys before I depart!

If you are from the area, lived in the area or have visited and have tips for me, please share! I’m excited to explore and find my way through a new city. And please, friends and family, come visit!! Louis and I would love the company in our new home :)

And to my friends, family and co-workers…see ya real soon :)

The Bachelorette, Episode 6: Double Eliminations and Steamy Make-Outs

20 Jun Screen shot 2012-06-20 at 3.30.19 PM

I first want to thank everyone who read last week’s post and wrote to me about their minds being changed or opening their eyes to at least the possibility that Ryan isn’t really what is being portrayed on the show, rather than slamming me for sticking up for him. I think we all get caught up in the show sometimes ( I admit, I do, too) and forget that there is a ridiculous amount of editing that goes on. We don’t always see the whole picture and it’s hard to step back and see things for what they may really be when it seems like giant red flags are flying in our face. I have learned that this show can make anyone look like anything and to not judge based on this show, which is why I haven’t been as critical as in seasons past. I always knew it happened but it really hit home this season.  I would never stand by something – or someone – that I didn’t have full confidence in. I hope that the Men Tell All gives everyone a better picture of who he is and if you ever get the chance to meet him in person I challenge you to spend 5 minutes of your time with him. I’m pretty sure any doubts you may have will be washed away :)

Can we start off by adding “(insert name of location) is the best place to fall in love” to the list of cheesy and overused phrases on The Bachelor/Bachelorette?  It has definitely passed “I gave up a lot to be here” and is creeping up on “I’m here for the right reasons.”

Travis gets the first one-on-one and I’m excited because we finally get to know more about him. Although getting to know someone on the show at episode 6 usually doesn’t bode well for them in the long run. Travis and Em walk the streets and explore the city. Is it just me or has this season been underwhelming when it comes to the dates? I know we all roll our eyes at the over the top antics of some dates and make fun of the ever-present helicopter but, I feel like this season has been very blah. I know the guys need to get used to having a partner that is consumed with her daughter and can’t go on elaborate trips and activities but, c’mon! Let’s see the chick get to do some fun things!

The extent of “fun things” that Travis and Emily get to do is stand on a stone that looks like some creepy face.

1- why does this stone (that you’re supposed to stand on) have eyes?, 2- what is the purpose of the mouth being wide open? and 3- is that a mustache? Somehow being able to balance on this stone and remove a piece of clothing will mean you will be lucky in love. I say it means you were just conned into looking like a fool in public but knock yourself out! For fun, go back and listen to this part of the date with your eyes closed. “Do you want me to hold you? Hold my hand for a second. Wait, put one finger here. Try comin’ at it this way. Well, c’mon we aren’t leavin’ here until at least one of us in lucky at love. Good job. Nailed it. ” OK, I’m officially immature haha :)

If you ask me, this date would’ve been perfect for Wolf. He probably could’ve convinced this little man in an alley to trade shoes so his party pants would’ve had a matching pair.

In the middle of the date we head over to the hotel where the guys get the group date card. Ryan gets the first, second one-on-one so of course we get some commentary from him that will make him look like a jerk. All I know is that what was said about manipulating the situation to get the girl to fall in love was completely edited. What y’all didn’t hear was that he said he would never do that to Emily. Ah, the powers of editing.

Back to Travis and Emily. FINALLY someone realizes the elephant in the room and decides to call attention to it…the food that never gets eaten! Good job,Travis. Enjoy that food! Emily and Travis are so candid with one another, look like they’re having a great date, Emily picks up the rose, compliments him….and then sends him home. It has to be a very difficult position to be in for Emily to let someone go that is an amazing person and someone she clicks with. But romance is the key and, unfortunately, Travis doesn’t hold it.

Group date time and guess what elaborate date the guys get?! A DISNEY MOVIE! I’m sorry but this is hilarious. I mean, I love Disney. I work for Disney. Obviously I love the tie in. But for a date…on the Bachelorette?! Bleh.

But wait, that’s not all. Let’s throw the guys in kilts and make them compete in physical activities for Emily’s hand. I know most women were loving the shots of the guys getting changed but all I saw and remember from this part was this:

I imagine whoever this is is feeling exactly how I would feel if producers decided to surprise me with a trip to the pool without warning and time to shave my legs. I bet he is pretty glad they never showed his face. But since the hair is pretty grown out, I’m thinkin’ this is a guy who hasn’t had a date in a while and clearly didn’t think he’d need to be impressing Emily today. I totally got the heebie jeebies seeing this. Anyone else feel the same? Clearly I like my men smooth and non-prickly.

The guys have to throw their muscle around and compete against each other in archery, wood chuckin’ and stick tug o’ war. Poor Chris. Dude couldn’t catch a break. It was like watching coyote trying to catch road runner over and over again yet blowing himself up or getting crushed by his own anvil. But apparently Emily doesn’t want a strong, muscle-y man and Chris gets the trophy for being the bravest of the day. The competitor in me is screaming shenanigans!

At the after party the guys really have nothing interesting to say. Thank God for Arie and his Christian Grey tendencies or I would’ve passed out on the couch watching this. I mean, really. Is there anything left to say about this? Guys…take notes. This.is.steamy.

Emily says she’s going to give the rose to the guy according to how he makes her feel, how she feels around them and judges this by the butterflies in her stomach. And yet Mr.Brave gets the rose. Not Mc Steamy, not the strong dude that impressed her. The guy who couldn’t shoot a stinkin’ bow and arrow walks away the winner. W…..T…..F.

Final one-on-one kicks off and Ryan and Emily go driving through the city, oystering and to a dinner that will probably never get eaten. Throughout the date we see their playful nature with each other. I think that since Emily always seems to joke back with Ryan, Ryan doesn’t see his comments as negatively effecting her. If she really didn’t like certain things he said I think she could’ve made it more clear that it was bothering her. Joking back and being playful may have been sending mixed messages. During dinner we get to the core of what pushes Emily away from Ryan. She thinks she would have to be too perfect around him and she isn’t sure if that’s because of her own insecurities. See, ladies. Even gorgeous women like Emily have insecurities. I have known one too many relationships that end up crashing and burning because of insecurities. I’m not thinking that was the case here, though. It may have been the straw that broke the camels back but I think these two are just on totally different pages. Major props go to Ryan, though, for finishing off the wine before his walk of shame. Priorities, people.

In Ryan’s exit we see him talk about wanting to be portrayed in the correct light and for who he truly is. If he was the arrogant and cocky person so many believe him to be, I don’t think he would’ve said that. I don’t think he would’ve been bothered by his edit at that point. I also don’t think he would’ve taken the time to understand Emily’s point of view and reasoning for letting him go. I think if he was self-centered he would’ve just walked off and let that be that. Maybe flipped a table in the process.

After the date Arie gets some preferential treatment and goes to visit Emily to see how she is. Hate to break it to ya but I think seeing her and Arie sitting on the same bed, on top of the covers chatting is going to be this season’s version of the “hot tub make-out.” Which would you prefer, hmmmm?

vs

The rose ceremony is a big pile of get excited for nothing. We are led to think that Emily is hesitant about keeping a couple of guys but in reality she just wanted to keep them all. Her heart is so big and she doesn’t want to let any of them go. How sweet. When are we going to see fireworks?! The only passion so far has been in an alley in Croatia. In a couple of weeks we meet families! Why am I not over the moon about any of these relationships?!

Anyone else not feeling the passion and excitement yet?

The Bachelorette, Episode 5: Ryan ain’t that bad and a Hood Rat Bachelorette

14 Jun Screen shot 2012-06-14 at 3.44.04 PM

Holy cow I’m finally writing a blog! I haven’t done a Bachelorette blog the past couple week because  1) I got busy with life stuff, and 2) I had a lot of thoughts running through my head and wanted to give it a little bit of time before I came up with my stance on some of the guys. Obviously we have a couple of men on the show that have stood out (not for the best of reasons) and my position is one that you maybe haven’t heard much of. Hear me out on this one…

Two guys have made some comments that have definitely rubbed America wrong. Granted, they aren’t there for America, but still. It is a T.V. show and the public opinion will play a part. While they have both made questionable comments,I definitely see a difference between Kalon and Ryan. I’m going to take the chance of getting a lot of negative comments and defend Ryan.

From the very beginning we have known Ryan is someone who lives through his faith. I’m about to talk A LOT about faith and God so if you are someone who isn’t open to that or your don’t hold those same beliefs, you may just want to skip over this. I also want to say I have no idea if this is truly what Ryan is thinking and in no way do I mean to put words in his mouth. This is just how I am seeing things and think he mayyyyybe deserves a break.

Anyways, Ryan has said multiple things (quoting his preacher on the second episode, for instance) that have let us know he isn’t someone who takes this “journey” lightly and feels he is called for a higher purpose. Why the verbal diarrhea, then, you may ask? I’m pretty convinced Ryan has been completely worked over by producers and editing. We see it every season. Someone gets a bad edit. Sometimes they deserve it, sometimes it’s all crafted behind-the-scenes. In his case, I think it has been created behind-the-scenes with a little assistance from him. I will TOTALLY agree that he has said some things that let the manipulation and editing happen BUT I don’t think his words come from a bad place like most everyone is interpreting them to. Let’s break it down a little, starting with what America is hating about him.

1- Ryan is full of himself. I’ll kinda give you this one. The guy is his number one fan and has confidence we have never seen before on the show. If you asked him, I’m sure he’d admit that he thinks highly of himself. But his confidence isn’t something foreign to us and might be something we are guilty of, too. Look, I’ll be the first to tell you I’ll petition like heck that I’m a great catch and have qualities that make me a great person. Think of when you go into a job interview. It’s one of the most uncomfortable parts of an interview but you have to sell yourself. You have to brag and tell them why you are so amazing and better than anyone else. And that’s exactly what he’s doing in these interviews. PLUS, the commentary he is giving on himself isn’t just out of the blue. It’s prompted by questions and producers wanting him to explain why he is the best for Emily.

I bet many of us are not too far off from Ryan when it comes to self-confidence. The difference is that we have never seen it on this show and most of us keep that self-confidence on the DL. A lot of people will censor themselves when they walk through the mansion doors. I think Ryan is so trusting of producers and the show and has such a sense of trust in the journey that God is taking him on, that he doesn’t think twice. Not to mention, he is also an athlete (which usually equals a strong personality and a lot of confidence) AND he owns his own business which he has to sell all day, every day. The commentary he is giving about himself is something he is used to and accustomed to so he probably didn’t think twice about answering questions centered around his positive characteristics. Is his delivery the best in the world? Eh, I’m gonna say no. But the dude is honest. And I’d rather see someone be honest than full of lies.

2- Ryan is superficial. This idea of Ryan came about from either his comment about Emily being a trophy wife or her needing to work out. When it comes to the trophy wife comment, I think a lot of people missed his previous explanation of what a trophy wife is to him. He told Emily that in his mind a trophy wife is a woman who has the entire package. Looks, brains, caring nature, confidence. Someone that is the best she can be and makes him better for it. I think this all fell on deaf ears when he explained it to Emily…possibly because she is used to guys fawning over only her looks and when she hears “trophy” she thinks “game.” I don’t know about you ladies, but I want my husband to think I’m a trophy wife. I want my husband to show me off, be proud to be with me and think of me as a prize. Because, while love is not a game, I am a prize to be won. I won’t be with the man who simply strides up and shows me attention but rather with the man who puts in the work and shows me he deserves me and can hang with me. And, dang it, I want a trophy husband! A freakin’ hot, God-loving, caring, smart, funny, strong, trophy husband :).

The working out comment (while it may not have been the best way to bring up the topic) probably stems from his desire to want to be with someone who values being healthy, motivated and attractive to their significant other. Many didn’t catch that, as Emily was grilling him on loving her if she gets fat, he asked her if the weight gain would be because she got lazy. And in episode 4, when it came up again, she asked him what if she didn’t go to the gym and instead was getting a workout by chasing his kids around, to which he replied that would be totally attractive. And every time he brings it up he has a smile on his face and is laughing.  I’m sure most of it (while rooted in truth and honest feelings) is said in a joking way and to get her to lighten up. Ryan isn’t saying you better not get fat or I won’t love on you, he’s saying he wants to be with someone who has the same values he does when it comes to being healthy, motivated and wanting to look good for a partner. Um, I’m pretty sure if you asked anyone they would want the same things as him. He just has the courage to say it.

3- Ryan is on the show to be the next Bachelor.  I’m called for something bigger.” Some of you took this comment to mean he thinks he’s going to be the next Bachelor. I’m understanding it as him talking about being called for something bigger in the realm of life and with regards to his faith. I truly think Ryan is someone who believes his life is meant to serve God. I don’t think his focus is to find a wife at the end of this. I think his focus is to follow the calling he feels in his heart, be a good representation of the Lord and whatever he is supposed to have in life, he will be given. Which is another reason why I think he’s so confident. He trusts that the Lord will put him on the right path to be with Emily if he’s supposed to be with her and that it’s out of his hands. “I’m not here to impress you, I’m here to make an impression,” and “Isn’t it great when you can use a position like this?” Again, more comments I believe to be rooted in his faith. I think he is talking about making an impression in regards to who he is and the role faith has played in his life. I don’t think he’s meaning any harm or rudeness to Emily when he says he’s not there to impress her but rather meaning that he is who he is and his life has a greater purpose of sharing his faith and making that be his lasting impression. And he is also using the position of being on the show to relay his faith to others. “I know the media…I can go do Bachelor Augusta.” 1- we never see his face when he says this so we have no idea when this is really said or if that’s what’s said. 2- If you all think no other contestant has ever said they wouldn’t mind being the Bachelor or Bachelorette in the middle of trying to “win” the current show they’re on, you’re crazy. 3- If he really did say this, he’s saying this to Michael. A guy who is probably talking with him about feeling as if he’s going home. I can easily see Ryan pulling stuff out to try to cheer him up, talking about how this show isn’t the end of the world. We have seen (especially in this most recent episode) that Ryan has a joking nature. 4- WHO HONESTLY SAYS “I’M GOING TO DO BACHELOR AUGUSTA” and means it????? This is in no way shape or form meant to be taken seriously. I mean, c’mon guys. “I think if I were the Bachelor, it’d be a neat thing to see.”  Again, if you think contestants never talk about the possibility of being the lead while being a contestant, you are living in a dream world. Heck, we had girls pretty much petitioning to be on Bachelor Pad while still on my show. It happens. A lot. And I think he means it being neat as in the work he can do by being a Bachelor that isn’t afraid to profess his faith. Should Ryan have been more careful with what he said to producers? Absolutely. But these comments could have easily been pulled from him. Just because he is talking about being the Bachelor doesn’t mean he wants to be the Bachelor.

Lastly, there has been three examples that I could think of off the top of my head of Ryan chatting with and comforting other guys in the house: Tony, Michael and Doug. How is a guy that is supposedly self-centered, rude and arrogant, taking time to chat and comfort some guys? Why is it that no one is confronting him in front of everyone else and asking about his intentions to his face? I could be wrong, but have we heard anyone else say anything negative about his intentions other than Arie? And for the record, I think this whole Ryan vs Arie thing got blown out of proportion. When Ryan first talked to Emily about her kissing Arie, his beef was with her kissing him in front of everyone, not that she was kissing him in the first place. I think he had issue with that because in his mind it may cause him to question who she is. It’s one thing to kiss a bunch of guys, it’s another thing to kiss them in front of other guys you are trying to start a relationship with. Maybe it caused him to question Emily’s intentions…maybe this is where the whole “set an example” talk came from. In his eyes maybe that action caused him to really think about what she’s about. Again, I’m not meaning to put any words in Ryan’s mouth but, I have seen some things that I think conflict with how America is viewing him and just wanted to put a different light on the situation.

OK! Done with that…feel free to hate on me for stickin’ up for him but as someone who sees a lot of comments that trigger me thinking there is a strong faith-filled background, I’m defending him. On to episode 5!
First one-on-one goes to Sean. He seems genuinely excited to see her and I think Emily really likes him. While she may like him and he may like her, I can’t help but think they don’t mesh well because their kisses are SO awkward. Who kisses straight on, repeatedly?
I don’t know…maybe it’s just me but I think it looks a little weird. And another thing I may be on my own about was his little speakers corner bit. I think it’s one thing to profess your feelings or love for someone ONCE YOU HAVE LOVE TO TALK ABOUT. But seeing him up there made me feel really uncomfortable…kind of like how I feel watching people who have no honest friends audition for American Idol. Woof. I’m still waiting for him to show us something. Either we aren’t seeing the whole picture or he just hangs there. Like a Chloe handbag. Right, Jef?
Group date time and we get to see the guys make complete fools of themselves. Man dressed as a woman? Check. Man performing Shakespeare with a southern accent? Check. Man performing words he can barely pronounce in front of an audience? Triple check.
Kalon is taking this way too seriously.
Travis is doing exactly what everyone should be doing – having fun with it.
And Arie looks like he’s about to drop one.
He says this is his worst nightmare. I would think running his race car into a wall would be his worst nightmare but hey, what do I know?
And now the confrontation we all have been waiting for! Daddy Doug decides to rat out buck up and tell Emily about Kalon’s “baggage” comment. Em decides it’s time to go “all West Virginia hood rat backwoods on his a$$.” And you know how I know she means it? She takes off the jacket!
She had every right to go off on Kalon and respond the way she did but I really don’t agree with her getting upset about the other guys not saying anything. Personally, I think she has to go through all this on her own without guys ratting each other out. It was clear that Kalon wasn’t going far and captivating Emily’s heart so I wouldn’t have felt the need to come forward and say something if I was one of the guys. If there was a guy that was really getting her attention and he said something, maybe then they should step forward. But I don’t think it was fair of her to lay a guilt trip on the guys. The last thing I want to see is a line of guys waiting to talk to her at every rose ceremony with a list of things she should know just so they are in the clear if someone comes out as not being the best fit for her. And I’m pretty sure a guy did say something. Doug did. So why is she saying no one said something and no one deserves the rose? I’m confused.
After Emily cleaned house, it’s time for Jef to get his one-on-one date. Jef. Buddy. We need to talk. Emily wants babies. Lots and lots of babies. I’m concerned with your ability to give her that due to the tightness of your skinnies.
The two head off to have tea while an English woman interrupts every two seconds to correct their etiquette…the exact opposite of a romantic experience. Talk about getting the short end of the scone on this date.
Dessert in the London Eye is filled with Jef saying a lot of great things. When it comes to opening up and showing emotion, Jef hits it out of the park. While I see him as a great catch, something just isn’t clicking. I see a relationship between the two of them being easy or relaxed. But I don’t see any passion and I don’t hear the openness that he has for her, coming from Emily about him.

Jef can tell you 1 millllllllllion reasons why he should be with Emily. 
 Elimination time in London and everyone is going over the top. Ryan is re-enacting their Romeo and Juliet scene, sneaking in a real make out sesh. Ale ale jandro pulled out some mushrooms to show her what he can offer her back home (ok, maybe that didn’t happen but I have been hoping he would bring mushrooms into this from day 1 and he’s dropping the ball). Wolf even threw on his “business pants.”
Emily is on a witch hunt looking for someone who may be just like Kalon. The guys are feelin’ the heat but none like Arie. Maybe he’s taking it harder than the others because he had the opportunity to stand up and he didn’t or it could be because he’s one of the first to really fall for her and is so nervous about being sent home. I think his emotions are really growing and the last thing he wants to do is hurt her. So far I think it’s safe to say that Arie has pulled ahead of the pack and is running neck and neck with Sean. Sean managed to escape scrutiny because he wasn’t on the group date so it’s all roses for him. Emily is totally smitten but there’s just something that’s missing. Can’t put my finger on it but in my eyes Arie is the top dog.
Rose time and these guys are seriously freakin’ out! Arie’s all blotchy, lookin’ like he just got done with a crying session in the bathroom.
Ale ale jandro looks like someone just threw some poison on his mushroom farm. Wait, what kind of mushroom farmer is he? Poison on a “mushroom” farm may be a good thing. Poison on a mushroom farm would be bad.
Poor Ale ale jandro. Emily does not see a future on the farm with you and your mushrooms. Emily tells the guys they are headed to amazing Croatia. Guarantee none of them could point it out on a globe.
And then we get an amazing montage of the rest of the season…sans final rose ceremony. Boooo. But um…can someone explain the changes in Emily’s skin tone to me?
For the love of all things fabulous, will someone please lower the spray tan bottle before Em looks like this:

The Bachelorette, Episode 2: Frog Legs and Bacon

23 May Screen shot 2012-05-22 at 10.44.48 PM

Now that last week is out of our way, we have our bachelors and are ready for the “journey” to begin! I don’t know about you all but I get so excited for dates to start. Some spoiler sites out there would say no one cares about the journey…the public just wants to know who wins. For me it’s the exact opposite. I want to get to know all the guys (not the three or four that are most controversial) and see relationships go down in flames form. These recaps are the most fun to write, so here we go!

What would a season be without Chris Harrison coming in and breaking down the rules of the game for everyone. Chris, why are you doing this? What, do you think one of these guys went all “The Vow” on us, got a brain injury and doesn’t remember what he’s doing? Oh, wait…

Too soon? I kid, I kid. Chawwwwlie I adore you. The jokes are all in good fun :)

First one on one date card arrives. Drum rollllll……..RYAN!

Wooo! Ryan is one of my faves and I couldn’t be more excited for him. Why, you may ask. Well, when’s the last time the person with the first date was the last one standing? What’s that? Did you say never? Perfect ;)

“My pastor always said, if you treat a woman like a queen, she’ll treat you like a king.” Yup, that’s what Ryan says after reading the date card. He’s on The Bachelorette and he’s quoting his pastor. When Emily arrives to pick him up, he asks if he can take her hand. When they arrive at Emily’s house to have a casual day making cookies he asks if he is coming in. I mean, really? Where are guys like this kept? I’m convinced there is an island where men with manners are hoarded. Along with all the straight male models. And Channing Tatum.

Other major pluses for Ryan during this date:

He’s a man that can carry all the groceries in at one time. So crucial. 

He’s a man that knows the difference between a deep v and a perfect v and a man that knows how tight a shirt should be.

He’s a man that can pass the door test. What’s the door test? See below (possibly NSFW so watch with caution)…

Later on in the date Emily and Ryan zoom off to get all fancy for the red carpet treatment.

Emily says that when something goes on in Charlotte, everyone knows about it, hence the crowd. I say producers told everyone to be there. Tomato, tomahhhto.

Emily shows us this season is going to be polar opposite from every other one in that she comes out guns blazing with tough questions. Ryan is quick on his feet and has honest and great answers for each of her questions. I think what I like best about his approach is that every answer he gives is in the grand scheme of things. He says he wants Em to get what she wants and hopes that it may be him. He says she should be protective and cautious. Every answer he gives isn’t sugar coated and forcing himself as the man at the end. He puts her and her happiness first and hopes that he can be part of it. Being able to see her happiness as the main goal (and not selfishly wanting his own happiness) is really hard to do in this setting and he seems to have his head on straight. Emily approves and he gets the rose!

The only negative I have from this date in regards to Em and Ryan is the awkward dance scene. I don’t know about y’all but, when I’m dancing with a guy I’m into, or hanging out with a guy I’m into, I can’t stop looking in their eyes. Em almost avoids eye contact while dancing. Granted, this could be because of the crazy fans all around but this isn’t exactly a neon sign flashing “final one” either.

Group Date

The men arrive thinking they’re going to do some sort of performance. Emily says that if anyone knows how to put on a variety show, it’s these guys (referring to the Muppets). I say if anyone knows how to win a role in the new Broadway musical, Newsies, it’s Stevie:

What is with this hat?!

Honestly (and this says a lot since I work for Disney), I was totally bored by this date and normally I love bacon! The only glimmer of interest I showed during this date was when sweet, sweet Chawwwwwlie got nervous and insecure. This guy is running a close race to be my new fave guy. He’s not afraid (ok, maybe he’s a little afraid) to say what’s on his mind, show his insecurities and take a hit. Which is why I am TOTALLY ticked off when Jef gets the group date rose. Say what??? We didn’t hear Jef utter a single word, Emily has to confront him and he puts the whole state of Texas between them while talking, but HE gets the rose?

The only positive that comes out of Jef getting the group date rose now because of needing reassurance is that he has no excuse to be coy, to sit back or be insecure. Emily just gave him reassurance. She just took the reins, told him she’s trying to get his attention and took a stance in front of the entire group to say she’s interested. If he doesn’t take that hint, he should just pack his flowbee and hit the road.

Last one on one date of the epi goes to Joe. Em treats him to a private jet to her home state of West Virginia and they go to a place she has visited since she was a little girl. Emily has been visiting a royal palace since she was little?

Whelp, it’s safe to say we grew up in two different worlds. 

Hey, Em. You know how you know you’re the lead and not simply one of the random chicks on The Bachelor? You jump in the water and they never show your make-up all drippy, smudged and wet dog hair. Lucky girl.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Kalon gets in it with Doug. Kalon thinks he put being a dad on hold by coming on the show, all Doug can say is “check it” and all I can think of is Kasey and “kick rocks.” I’m not even going to touch this subject because you can’t win with either side. I can see what Kalon is saying but you never critique the parenting skills of someone you don’t know.

Joe and Emily move on to the never eaten dinner portion of the date and, again, Em is shooting lasers. I mean, maybe the guys didn’t really think too hard about the situations they would be put in, and maybe it’s my nature to be over prepared, but how did he NOT think about all the possible hard questions he could get before going on the show? How is he not prepped for these? Joe looked like a deer in headlights when he couldn’t seem to give Emily the answers she was looking for and eventually gets sent home at the end of the night. My heart definitely breaks for him because he didn’t see it coming. Emily is pretty heartbroken about it too which just goes to show how serious she is about only keeping men around that she can see a future with…no matter how “nice” or “sweet” they may be. PS: we thought departures from past seasons were harsh? Imagine being Joe, leaving his date after not getting the rose, seeing fireworks as if Emily is rejoicing that he is gone. Rough, producers, rough.

Rose Ceremony

Time to send two dudes home. Emily takes time to chat with everyone but of course there has to be some drama and this comes with Ryan taking time with Emily. Yes, he has a rose. Yes, his letter is 7 pages long. BUT, Emily could’ve read it at another time. Emily could’ve told Tony to come back later. Tony could’ve had a brain and left. All that situation was missing was creepy music and The Mask to come up and wait alongside him. Before you guys go all judge-y on Ryan you have to realize this is a show. Certain aspects are produced because the audience needs to see something. Was this all a work of producers? I don’t know. Is it possible, definitely.  Plus, think of it this way. After an amazing date with someone you are excited, you can’t wait to see them again and you want to talk to them to let them know exactly how much you enjoyed your time. Well, on this show you can’t exactly text the person and you can’t pick up a phone. Ryan did the one thing he could to relay how he felt. While on this show the last thing you want to be is reserved. You need to open up, you need to say what you feel. So what if it took 7 pages. He was open and for that I’m sure Emily was grateful for the reassurance.

Somehow, someway Alejandro (does anyone else think of the Lady Gaga song every time you hear his name?), Alessandro, ponytail dude and the Newsies backup dancer made it to next week. Oy vey. Next week will be interesting to say the least!

It’s Not Hard to Test Negative-The Braun Case

17 May
If you follow sports it’s hard to ignore the swirl of media attention on MLB and their drug program. From Roger Clemens to Ryan Braun, MLB can’t seem to catch a break when it comes to media scrutiny. Seeing all of this has frustrated me enough to write this because the game of baseball is one I love and I hate seeing it dragged through the mud. But this isn’t a blog analyzing the program. This is a blog about testing negative. As a former college athlete that was tortured with a yearly multi-hour long presentation on drug testing, I know the crazy risks that even an over-the-counter cold medicine can cause. It’s because of my 4 year experience with testing and drug warnings that I find it very, very hard to side with Ryan Braun during this debacle.
 

I’ll admit, I don’t know every detail of Braun’s case. I’ll also admit that nothing is ever black and white. But what I do know is that Braun went to the University of Miami to play baseball at the same time I was at fellow ACC school UNC Chapel Hill playing softball. I do know that he had to sit through the same torturous drug meetings I did each year or, at the very least, read through the epic stack of documents describing the NCAA drug program and sign his life away saying he agreed and understood. I do know he knew plenty about drug testing before entering MLB.

I can’t imagine MLB’s drug program being more lenient than the NCAA’s. I can’t imagine MLB doesn’t put their players through the same type of meetings or documents each year. Testing negative is pretty simple. Don’t use performance enhancing drugs. If there is a vitamin, supplement, medication you even consider taking, ask your athletic trainer or team doctor to make sure it won’t flag your test. Boom. That simple. If I was raking in millions of dollars playing a sport in which even a vitamin could take away my career or tarnish my achievements, you better believe I’d be getting it checked out before I put it in my body. If there is a private medical issue that requires me to take medication, I’d file for a therapeutic use exemption which notifies MLB about a necessary substance that may flag a test. As long as they know about it before I take it and test positive, I’m in the clear.

Pretty simple, right?

So how is it that Braun tested positive? That’s where things get interesting.

According to reports, after Braun took his test (on a Saturday), the test administrator couldn’t get to a shipping office in time to overnight the sample to a testing facility. Instead, the administrator took it to his home and stored it until Monday when he could ship it out, a procedure both MLB and the administrator have argued is established protocol in storing a sample until a drop-off center is open. So, naturally, you would think Braun would argue the administrator must have tampered with the sample…adding something to it ruining the integrity of the test which turned it positive. Well, that would prove pretty difficult. I don’t know the procedure MLB has when it comes to sealing a sample but, in college a sample had a seal placed over the lid that the testee signed. If the sample was opened, the seal would break making it obvious to anyone it had been jeopardized. Not only was the cup holding the sample tape sealed but, the sample was also placed in a bag that was sealed with the signature of the testee. The testee is present for all of this and signs off at the end of packaging everything up saying that it was packaged properly and in front of them. If someone wanted to meddle with a sample, they would have to break the signed seal on the bag and a signed seal on the cup holding the sample, then retape both and forge the signature of the testee twice.

In Braun’s case, it was decided that there was zero evidence that the test was tampered with. So, if the sample wasn’t tampered with, what legs does Braun have to stand on to refute the positive test?

None. Braun’s team successfully won an appeal of his suspension and positive test because it was decided the 48-hour delay was enough time to raise question in the test. Even though the actions the test administrator took were established protocol. Even though the test showed zero signs of being tampered with.

Confused? Yeah, me too. Braun’s team never argued that the test was tampered with. In my mind, that would imply that his team thinks that because the sample sat in an administrator’s refrigerator for 48 hours before shipping, it somehow magically sprouted testosterone. Say what?

If you ask me, Braun’s stance is a joke. If the test wasn’t tampered with, how did the unusually high levels of testosterone get there? His test was shown to not test positive for a steroid which could mean one of many possible vitamins, substances, medications he was taking may have flagged his test. Instead of coming after the system based on a loophole, Braun should be searching for what substance flagged his test and encouraging doctors and trainers to be more aware of drugs they are okaying for him and other professional athletes. If you didn’t file the proper paperwork for something you were taking, take your suspension and realize that unfiled paperwork did you in. If you were told by a doctor or trainer that a substance was totally fine to take without filing paperwork and you blindly followed, work to make those in power of okaying substances better aware and educated.

No testing procedure is going to be perfect. But for a suspension to be overturned based on a technicality rather than on the science and the clear facts of a case casts doubt on a program that has proved successful. Every situation in life has a lesson to be learned from it. The lesson Braun should take is that you can never be too careful. Careful with what you put in your body, careful with what you authorize, careful with the actions you take. While I understand Braun may want to avoid a suspension and keep his name clean, he could do more to benefit his name, the game and the system by fighting the test and suspension with a reason we all can get behind and support. Whether the dreaded “*” is in the official record books or not, it’s in the minds of the fans and that’s something only credibility and a sensical appeal can erase.

The Bachelorette, Episode 1: Grannies, Grand Gestures and Goobers

16 May Screen shot 2012-05-15 at 9.54.23 PM

The night finally arrived! I know many of you were dying to see Emily get her own show and were on pins and needles leading up to last night. But I was too busy relaxing in Mexico with 6 of my lovely girlfriends from my season of The Bachelor to worry about the premiere. Aren’t you jealous? :)

But of COURSE I was/am excited for Emily’s season. My recap of the first episode will be different than all others. This one is basically me analyzing the guys rather than recapping. Every guy pretty much landed in one of two categories. Heck yes or heck no. Let’s get the heck no’s out of the way so we can end this recap on a good note :)

Heck No’s (in no specific order)

Kalon aka Helicopter Guy

If it wasn’t your ridiculous intro video describing your past self as a womanizer that put you in this category, it definitely was your arrival by helicopter. And, I’m sorry if I don’t understand but you described yourself by saying you “used to be loud and obnoxious.” Used to be? So you’re saying arrival by chopper (“chopper style, chop, chop, chopper style”)ISN’T loud and obnoxious? Right…..

Lerone

I don’t really want to put him in this category because the dude sounds like a really, really nice guy. But the second I saw him walking down the street with a dog the size of his iPhone I almost lost it. I mean, a dude with a dog is totally attractive to me. But not one that I could punt. MY dog is bigger than his dog. The only way he gets a pass is if he inherited this dog from his ill grandmother.

Tony

Again…sounds like a good dude but honestly I think the only reason Tony came on the show was to get the following amazing line from Em, ” I believe in love and fabulous shoes.” His shoe was not fabulous. And neither were his two thumbs.

GRandy

Oh, Randy. Aye, aye, aye. Dressed as a grandma? Bless his heart…

Leprechaun Guy

First, it was the dancing with a boom box. Then it was the green shirt. And finally it was the blabbering that you did allll night lonnnnnng. The only reason I’m glad you are still around is so that you and helicopter dude can go at it.

Travis

Ok, I’m not putting HIM in this category (because I think he’s super sweet and really cute) but I am putting his egg act there. After rewatching the interaction I get what he was trying to say (just don’t ask me explain it). BUT if it took me (and America) multiple times of watching his introduction to get what he’s saying, there is NO WAY Emily got it.

Heck Yes’s (in no specific order)

Ryan

I mean, what more do you need? Hot, works with kids, is athletic, has an adorable dog (that’s bigger than my dog). For me…game.over.

Arie

So, wow, my first impression was wrong based on his profile photo. Dude is hot! His eyes are gorgeous and has a totally down to earth personality. It’ll be interesting to see if his racing past ends up being a hurdle.

Charlie

All I can think of when I hear his name is this:

Chawlie bit meeee. hahahaha! Charlie is super cute. Has an adorable dog (are you sensing a pattern here?). Plus, plus plus!

Jef

Ok, yes, I totally ripped him and his 80s hair in my first post. He gained a little more points when I saw the show profile him talking about all his great work his company does. And then he won me over with this:

I’m guessing this is the “bad boy” side of my brain kicking in. This move was hot. There is something about this rough around the edges, sweet natured guy that totally got me in his corner. I can’t explain it but I like him! Biggest surprise of the night for sure.

Doug

Nice moves, buddy. Breakin’ out the single dad angle. I like your style…although I have to question whether it was you or your son Austin that truly won the first impression rose.

Well, there you have it. My picks for best and worst of the evening. Did you guys catch some of the great lines Emily and the guys gave us?

Emily: “Put on your big girl panties and move on with it.”

Emily: To Alessandro after speaking in a foreign language : “Where ya from?” Alessandro: “Brazil.” Emily: “Well, I’m going to say ‘Gracias.'” Ahem, Em…they speak Portuguese in Brazil.

The Bachelorette: Meet (my) Emily’s Men

2 May

It’s that time again! I was super pumped when I found out on Twitter that the profiles of all the men were being posted today. The season is right around the corner which means I get to lose my Monday night’s and I finally have consistent blog content!

I’m assuming some of the guys from this season have stumbled upon my blog because they set up Google Alerts and a link to this popped up in their inbox. For the guys, and all new readers, welcome! This blog will be completely sarcastic, an attempt at humorous, and not meant to be taken too seriously. Try to laugh along and relax while reading…nothing is meant to offend anyone. Also, I may make extreme declarative statements throughout the season about the men being made for me, perfect for me, needing to be with me, etc, etc. I am completely joking with these statements…unless one wants to reciprocate. And then I’m 100% serious. I’m joking. Maybe. I’m totally harmless, I swear.

The release of the profiles is like a double-edged sword for us viewers. On one hand, we’ve been DYING to find out what guys are vying for Em. Who’s going to be the next guy we swoon for, the drama king and who is going to make a complete fool out of themselves. But on the other hand, these profile pictures have a HORRIBLE way of making the guys look nothing like they really do and the answers to the ridiculous questions are never a good preview to their true nature. But, without fail, we all pick our faves from this list and hope they don’t disappoint come night one.

I’ve tried to narrow down some top picks based on the sketch artist compositions photos and survey questions. Let’s get real…the below analysis has absolutely zero to do with their compatibility with Emily but more like how I’m sizing them up…for me. Because we all know only one ends up with the girl (if they’re lucky) and the rest are s.i.n.g.l.e.

Aaron
I can see the cuteness and potential radiating behind this photo. I like the fact that he admits to being shy but at the same time dude needs to know how to approach a woman. He’s how old again? Oh yeah, 36! C’mon bud, time to sack up.
Arie
I think I may like this guy because he strongly resembles my college teeny bopper crush, Teddy Geiger.
Am I right?! All this guy needs to do is start singing “For You I Will” and game.over. I do have a weird thing about accents, though. He’s from the Netherlands and I have NO idea what that accent sounds like (or if he even has one) so that may be a deal breaker. If you have an accent and it’s not Southern or Australian, you’re not making it far with me.
Charlie
One of the few guys that actually looks cute in his pic! I only hope this translates to real life. And he has a dog…bonus! AND his idea of perfect happiness is “every dog fed and every child with a roof over his head.”  ARE YOU SERIOUS?! Just take my heart. Take my heart right…stinkin’…now.
Ryan
Again…another guy that has cuteness slightly radiating from the photo but didn’t take the best pic…I hope. I have a feeling he’s much more attractive than what this photo leads on. Either that or my radar for athletic men is in overdrive and won’t let me ignore him. We all know my sports/athletic obsession. Dude is an athletic trainer. He believes “athleticism is the “Art” of movement. Michael Jordan was an incredible Artist.” Um, helllooooo…I went to Carolina, the birthplace of MJ. We are meant to be. Not to mention his greatest regret is not sticking up for his brother. Family is huge for me so that’s a plus!
Sean
Sean’s a little cutie. Good smile, pretty eyes and whatdya know…played football in college! Can laugh at himself – good quality. But biggest date fear is forgetting his wallet? Out of ALL the possible things to go wrong forgetting your wallet is your biggest fear?? How about throwing up on your date, peeing your pants, running into an evil ex girlfriend, accidentally hitting your date in the face and breaking their nose? None of those popped into your head, buddy? No? Okay…maybe that’s just me. Moving on…
So the guys above are my top picks based off of these brutal photos and blah profile answers. Now…for those of you who plan on signing up for The Bachelorette in future seasons. Let’s take a look at what you should NEVER do, courtesy of this season’s contestants.
I’m sure this guy…let’s call him Roger, since I’m too lazy to go back to his profile to check his name…is a sweet and nice guy. But you are on a TV show…trying to find the person you are going to marry. Marriage equals a serious and mature commitment. You think the girl is going to think you are serious and mature with two earrings? I know there are some women out there that may go for that sort of thing but I’m going to say you probably shouldn’t make that gamble on this show. Lesson: When vying for love you will be picked over with a fine toothed comb. Don’t let even the slightest thing depict you aren’t ready for the end result. 
I know I said the survey answers don’t really give us a true and accurate depiction of the guys but here is a perfect example of how a wrong answer can totally ruin your standing. On first glance this guy might have been one of my “diamond in the rough” picks. After reading half way through his profile I was done and over him. Really, bud? The person you’d like to be for one day is Derek Jeter because he is like a God in NYC? And what exactly do you mean by “like a God?” That he can get any chick? That he gets things handed to him? Yes, you totally seem like a guy that is going on this show to find love and not fame. Lesson: Put at least a little thought into these answers. You are trying to win over a woman (and America) for life, not a night. 
Ok, so I know guys are manly and like to be rugged or not care about their looks. And I would never expect a guy to manscape, pluck, tweeze, wax, etc. BUT…when you are going on national tv it is totally acceptable and very much appreciated if you grab your sister, best girl friend, female co-worker, and ask what you could do to polish up your look. Tweezing/waxing the eyebrows do wonders for a guys face. Lesson: Don’t be afraid to “beautify” yourself. You’re going on national television…to impress and win over your future wife. If you put a little effort into your appearance it won’t be lost on a woman. I promise. 
Again…another cute guy that just missed the mark. I am definitely one to applaud diversity and uniqueness. Clearly this guy has that going with his “hair style.” BUT…if you are going to go different with hair or clothing, you have to step it up in another area. This photo looks like it’s straight out of an 80s high school yearbook (you can also thank the horrible blue tie-dye background for that). Have a unique hairstyle but be sure your fashion is on point to balance it out. Express your style through your wardrobe? Make sure the rest of your appearance (ie: hair) doesn’t scare the girl off. Lesson: Don’t be afraid to be bold but balance it out in another area. Keep your personal style but make sure it doesn’t isolate you in a negative way.
Whelp, there’s my breakdown of this year’s guys. I’m hopeful that any negative comment I made will be proven wrong and every positive comment reinforced come night one! As always, feel free to find me on Twitter @MarissaJustMay. Monday’s will be packed with live tweeting and on Tuesday or Wednesday this blog usually has my episode recap.
What are your thoughts on this year’s round of men? Are you thinking Emily has her man in this group??
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