Men — what are they good for? It's one of the great questions of our time. Babymaking, sure, but how many of them do you really need for that? One? Maybe five, for biological diversity? It's not quite clear why Jesus put as many of them as he did of people like me on this world, and that's what makes them such a delightful mystery.
I love men, even if all they are capable of loving is fishing and Legos and steak and automotive vehicles. Especially if that's all they're capable of loving — call me a masochist.
This week, our papery skinned Bachelor got to know the ladies he would later be having sex with, and it wasn't all roses and emotionally stable professionals. He got to know women with blond hair, women with vocal fry, women with babies, women with rooms and rooms of preserved dead animals, women who are not yet legally allowed to marry in 26 states, and women with traumatic childhood amusement park memories.
Arie first took out the elderly Becca. I do not know what they did because my computer was temporarily down, but I assume that was the universe protecting me from what She did not think I was ready to see. I can tell you that Arie did buy Becca fancy earrings and a necklace and probably another piece of jewelry that I'm forgetting and also, I think, a dress and shoes. Then, after dinner, he took all of it away except for the earrings.
Becca appears to be smitten anyway. She receives the first rose of the episode.
The next one-on-one date goes to Krystal, the yoga instructor (?????) who sounds like she's trying a little too hard not to be suspected of running an international underground hacking operation. Even when this woman is not actively speaking, she emits little noises that sound like those my dog makes when I tell her we are going on a walk 20 minutes before we actually leave so I can enjoy her adorable suffering.
Arie takes this woman to his home, the ultimate adrenaline rush. He shows her his kitchen and his bedroom and then they watch several hours of home videos, which is, in my opinion, the perfect activity to do with someone who only knows 200 words of English. She meets his mom and dad and brother and sister-in-law, and they show her enormous amounts of respect by not talking shit about her in Dutch, when they absolutely could.
The power in the hands of bilingual families could bring electricity to a tiny country for a full year.
Sadly, Krystal is not close with her family, and she admits this to Arie through tears at dinner, fearful that he will cast her upon the streets in a rage. Exhibiting the courage, strength, and elegance I am beginning to suspect comes naturally to this man, he does not. Instead, he keeps her around, presumably to break up with her just when she starts to believe that maybe this whole show really is about finding your soulmate and not about selling Olay facial scrub.
Back at the mansion, 15 lucky women get an invitation to smash cars into each other until the engines fail. They all accept and the next day finds them at a demolition derby ground. Unfortunately, not all of them are excited to simulate automotive manslaughter. Annalise, a dental hygienist (?????), begins to cry because she lost at bumper cars once as a toddler and has never been able to get over it. In the end, she reaches into reserves of courage she never imagined lived within her and smashes some of her competitors with an old car.
Seinne, a Yale graduate who won't even come close to winning because Arie "barely graduated from high school and worked at a Pizza Hut for several years," smashes the most women and takes the prize.
The cocktail party preceding the second rose ceremony is largely uneventful. Krystal gets called out for violating the unofficial girl’s code that says women who already have a rose may not look at or speak to Arie during the cocktail party. Bibiana, the litigator on this point, is not to be crossed. Despite having spent a cumulative 45 seconds with Ari since having entered the mansion, he keeps her around, promising us at least one more week of unadulterated drama.
Meanwhile, Arie gets cozy with the other Bekah, a nine-year-old nanny and the future protagonist of "Gone Girl 2.” Arie tells Bekah he likes her energy and Bekah confirms she is "simple, no drama, and easy to please." Bekah reminds me of many women who attended Pitzer College, my alma mater. She is pretty, loves nature, laughs loudly, is nice to everyone, and I would hide behind a tree or throw myself into a trashcan rather than risk a five-minute conversation if I saw her coming. Her energy makes me extremely nervous.
We will see who is right about Bekah in the end. Until next week, B.