Beauty & The Geek, Episode 4

Oh crap, it's Tuesday night, and I still never wrote last week's B&G recap. Well, I'd better get on it, if I want to be able to go to bed tonight... But this one will have to be quick, I'm tired.

Last week on Beauty and the Geek...

Can I just say that the "social experiment" thing bothers me? I don't know why, but they just keep saying it over and over, and it annoys the crap out of me.

Now 4 teams remain. Richard and Mindi, Lauren and Bill, Chuck and Caitalin (pronounced "kite-a-lin"), and Shawn and Scarlet.

Richard & Mindi return to say "We didn't get eliminated," and Richard probably acts a little too boastful, thus annoying Chuck yet again. The boyfriend and I wonder if it could possibly be random that Richard, who was kind of the "star," and posterchild geek in many of the commercials is still around and getting so much attention. (Let it be known, though, that the boyfriend thinks all reality shows are fixed.) On the other hand, I suppose you could argue that he made it into all of the ads because he made it so far in the competition. Whichever.

They go to find out what this episode's challenges will be, where the host tells them, "Congratulations, you are half of the way through, and have a one-in-four chance at winning a quarter of a million dollars." Chuck says, in a voice over interview, "I resisted the temptation to point out that we were 4/7th, not 1/2 way through, and having a one-in-four chance of winning the prize was contingent on everybody's chances of winning being roughly equal." Yes! Right on. I like that.

This week's topic? The women's challenge will involve "finance," the guy's challenge will also involve numbers... phone numbers. How freakin' cheesey is this, the way they phrase these every week? No, wait, it gets worse. "You're going to learn how to be a man, and get a woman's phone number." Um... ok. Also, this week we learn that only one team will win, as the challenges will be somehow combined.

The men learn that they will have to invite one of the women to a romantic dinner. Chuck immediately asks Scarlett, thus building on last week's blooming romance. Richard spends some time deliberating who he should ask (ever heard of "beggars can't be choosers?") and, meanwhile, most of the women agree to dates with the other men. When Richard finally gets around to asking the women, he has the worst pick up line of all time. He repeats, over and over (first to Scarlet, then to Caitalin, then to Lauren - keep in mind, there were only 4 women left, and I don't think the men were allowed to ask their own partners.)

"I'm a little ill."
"You're feeling ill? Why?"
"Because I'm about to ask you out."

Gee, wow, what a way to get on a woman's good side. Just thinking about going out with you makes me ill! Men, take note - this is not a line you should learn from! Well, except in the instance of learning from the mistakes of others.

That night, the men go on their "dates" with the women of the house (not their partners.) It's a little unclear what they think the purposes of the dates are. For Chuck and Scarlet, I think that it's almost a "real" romantic date. And, Chuck bores the crap out of Scarlet. And I don't think it's because she wasn't bright enough to understand what he's talking about - I think it's because he's just boring. For Mindi and Caitalin (in their dates with Shawn and Bill, although possibly in the opposite order), it seems as if their dates are friends hanging out, maybe female-friend-giving-male-friend-some-romantic-advice. Not in terms of critiquing the "date," but just in terms of giving pointers for future dates or for the upcoming phone number challenge. Finally, for Richard (in his date with Lauren), the date is an opportunity to show off his absolute worst possible behavior and table manners. Or, alternatively, as I'm beginning to suspect, to establish himself as a "TV Personality" by continuing to play the nerd role and not possibly taking this "social experiment" seriously at all.

(Hey, totally off subject, but labeling someone a "tv personality" just reminded me of that guy that N.D.C. was talking about - you know... Miles Kendall, the douche. Ok, back to the show...)

Challenge Time: The women go shopping and are challenged to pick out new clothes for their men. The challenge part? They have to buy them a new wardrobe, sticking to a $1000 budget by adding the clothing costs, plus sales tax, all in their heads. It was a little confusing at first, but it comes down to the fact that they all got to keep the clothes (at first I thought maybe only the winner - the one that came the closest to $1K? - would win and give the clothes to their man.) Also, the new clothing is part of an overall makeover that will presumably help your man be able to get more phone numbers in his challenge. In the end, Lauren wins, with a total of $972 or something. She also wins "an advantage" for her team in the next part of the challenge.

The women bring the clothes back to the men. Chuck comments on the $200 pricetag on a pair of jeans, which makes me think that maybe, Caitalin, his partner, has read this list of things single men must own.

The makeover continues as the men also get their hair done, then do a dramatic coming-through-the-curtain-to-reveal-their-new-look. Some of the men have pretty drastic changes including haircuts and color. Shawn and Bill, for instance, look very different, and certainly more "metro." I think I might even go so far as to say that Bill looks less "hetero." Not in a bad way. In fact, I think he now may be a better looking guy than the host (who, himself, needs a makeover, in my opinion.) Chuck looks a little better - not drastically different, but a little nicer, and a little more confident. Richard? I don't really see the difference. Maybe he was beyond help? Or maybe he didn't want to ruin his "tv personality" as a geek.

Next round: The men go out to some kind of city plaza, with the goal of getting as many women's phone numbers as possible in 30 minutes. The men wear earpieces that their partners can use to give them help. We also learn that the advantage that Lauren won the previous day was a one phone number advantage, so that Bill started out one phone number ahead in the count.

I can't believe the lame attempts some of these guys make! I can't believe the lame things these women fall for!

Shawn (referring to the earpiece), while speaking to two ladies: "Ugh, I got this gooey thing in my ear." Eeeww!

Chuck develops this whole role that he's a gay man working on a film project. The women hand over their numbers at alarming rates - but if this were reality, what would they say if he called later? Here's an example of Chuck not really using the project as a social experiment to learn something that will translate to the real world.

Most of the other men seem to do pretty well with a simple "Hi, I'm (insert name here) ... " approach. Nothing too gimmicky. And that seems to work.

I don't think we see a running tally as the time continues. With only 5 minutes remaining, Richard reverts back to his personality, approaching women with lines like "Hi, I'm in the FBI, can I have your phone number? Hi, do you like garlic? ANYBODY WANT TO GIVE ME THEIR PHONE NUMBER?" Meanwhile, Shawn appears to be giving up, and is just mulling around saying "Ugh! I can't do this! I just want to go home." And Chuck is still raking in the phone numbers with his gay man working on a film project story. (Who here thinks, "Hi, I'm going to be a doctor, can I call you sometime?" would have worked just as well, if not better? So do I.)

And the winner is... CHUCK, the gay film student, with 13 numbers! (Bill, with the one number advantage, finished 3 numbers behind.) Immediately, Richard fears that he will be sent back to the elimination room, given his history and tensions with Chuck.

So, Chuck and Caitalin get to pick both teams that will go to elimination room. Lauren comments that she's confident that she and Bill will be safe because she and Caitalin are very close friends. Meanwhile, we know that Chuck doesn't want to get rid Shawn and Scarlet, with his little romance abloom. In fact, back at the house, we see Chuck give Scarlet a hug and whisper "Don't pack your bags." So, Richard are Mindi are a definite for the elimination room. Richard continues his theatrics by showing up to the announcement with a cigarette and blindfold, as if he were in front of the firing squad.

In the end, Chuck won out somehow, and Shawn and Scarlet are spared. (Or, if you're in the "It's all rigged" camp, the producers would rather see where Chuck & Scarlet's romance will go, and don't care much about Caitalin & Lauren's friendship.)

In the elimination room... Lauren and Mindi are quizzed on math and finance (questions like "If a guy gives you five dozen roses, how many roses do you have?" and "What's a 15% tip on $50?"). Some of the questions get pretty tough. I mean, I could do them easily with a pencil and paper, but in your head, they're kind of hard. Well, for me. But I guess that's why they always joke that lawyers went to law school because they couldn't do math. Mindi gets all 3 of her questions correct, Lauren gets only 1 out of 3.

Bill (Lauren's partner) and Richard (Mindi's partner) are quizzed on dating. Again, these are kind of tough, if not outright unfair. For example, Bill is asked, "On a first date, who should pick up the check?" Bill responds, "The guy should pick up the check." "No, that's wrong, the person who asked for the date, that's incorrect." Now, wait, that's INCORRECT? It's incorrect for the man to pay? Or to offer to pay? Even if he was asked out? This is stupid. Who's going to say it's incorrect for a man to pay? Now I know this show is fixed...

Richard's question is, "On a date, what is the minimum percentage you should tip at dinner so your date can see you are generous?" He answers "20%" which I pretty much agree with, because you want to date a guy who is a good tipper. He's "right." (Although, couldn't you really argue that the minimum might be less than 20%? Couldn't you impress a girl with your generosity by leaving 19% and tipping the coatcheck guy especially well? I guess not.) And with that, Richard leads 4 to 1, making him uncatchable by Bill, so Richard and Mindi win yet again, and Bill and Lauren are kicked out.

Oh, so sad. Richard kisses Lauren goodbye, and now Richard has kissed 2 girls. When the host mentions to Richard that Mindi is 6-0 on the elimination questions, Richard responds, "I told her I'm going to give her all the money when we're done." And Mindi adds, "He has said that a few times." Well, Mindi, as your lawyer, I advise you to GO DO SOMETHING IN RELIANCE OF THAT PROMISE! IMMEDIATELY!

Goodbye Lauren and Bill. Bill, you were getting to cute to be a "geek" anyway. Maybe now you can get a role as one of the fab five or something.

Next time on Beauty and the Geek... Camping! Complete with carrying huge backpacks, lots of falling down, and Chuck shouting at Richard. Oooh, it's going to be good! And it's tomorrow! So, stay tuned!

Friday Spies

I like to do 'em on Saturday, or even almost Sunday, just to be different... or something like that.

1. What's your favorite season? Fall. I like September, October, and November the best. I don't really like summer heat. I like a cool crisp day, sun shining, maybe a little warm during the day, a little cool at night. I even like early winter, when a few snowflakes fall and it's like "Wow! Snow!" (unlike February, when you say "Snow? Not again!")
2. Do you have a green thumb? Nope. My plants in my office do ok, (I think the housekeeping people remember to water them, because I don't), but the plants in my home all look so sad and brown and mopey.
3. What is your favorite sport to watch? What is your favorite sport to play? Do you have a sports hero? I really only watch baseball. I like to swim, and I guess as far as a competitive team sport, I like kickball. That's fun. Sports hero? Well, Mary Lou Retton seemed pretty cool when I was a certain age.
4. Which would you rather be: Mayor, Governor, Senator, or President? I really have no political aspirations whatsoever (although, I'd consider being a Judge someday), so I think the best role for me would be Mayor, where I'd have the most hope of actually interacting with my constituents, and the least pressure to cater to private interests.
5. What are ten must-own items for single men and single women? Oh, good question, (and one which I sort of briefly touched on here), but not one I'm going to tackle in full right now. I just found out that my internet connection is going down for some service update in 18 minutes. And I cannot possibly begin to tell you single guys what you need in 18 minutes. But I can tell you that $150 jeans would not be on my list.

Soundtrack to my Life

Like all of the questions I end up answering, these are brought to you by BTQ (Milbarge, to be more specific).

1. What is the total volume of music you own? I would guess that I own about 100-150 CDs. I also probably have 3-4K MP3s on my old computer (that someday I will transfer to an external harddrive), which I downloaded when I was in college and law school. Finally, I probably have 100-200 songs that I've downloaded in the past year or two.

2. What's the last CD you bought? Actually I don't buy CDs that often now, but I was at a little flea market just last weekend and I bought Chill:Brazil, vol. 2. It was only a buck for the 2-disc set and I haven't listened to the whole thing yet, but I think it'll be good as background music as I'm straightening up around the house or working or something. I got into the Brazilian music thing last summer when I first heard Bebel Gilberto, who I am now a big fan of. (And who has a song on Chill:Brazil, vol. 2.)

3. What song is playing right now? I don't have any music on right now, but I just watched Napoleon Dynamite and have Jamiroquai's Canned Heat stuck in my head.

4. What 5 songs do I listen to a lot? This is tough. Even my favorite songs, I don't necessarily listen to them every day. On the other hand, I listen to my cell phone ringtones every day. And the nation anthem just about every day (during baseball games and other events). I have a bunch of songs on my work computer, but they mostly just shuffle while I'm doing work - but there's a lot of Barenaked Ladies and Paul Simon (I like to keep things relatively tame at work), but there's not one particular song that plays a lot. It's not like I have "Take This Job and Shove It" on repeat or anything.

5. What 5 people will I pose these questions to? I'm not going to name any names (because then I'll just be disappointed when they don't all do it), but if you're name is over there ------->
(0r even if it's not), I want to hear what you're listening to.

Passing The Bar (and not stopping in for a drink)

I didn't mean to imply with this post that the bar is is easy, or that you have to be stupid to fail, but I think most people go into really well prepared and most people (statistically) pass.

I've known a few very smart people who have failed, and I can't be sure exactly why, but I feel like most of them might have let nerves (and the hype) take over.

On the other hand, like I tell most of my friends who are studying for the bar: Let's figure that 80-90 percent of your school is passing the bar on the first try. Have you ever in your life not been in the top 80-90 percent of your class or any group of your peers in your life? Most likely not.

So, for those of you studying for the bar this summer, or who will be doing it soon, do what I did: You'll either have a regular study area (mine was the dining room table), or a few regular things that you'll be carrying back and forth to the library or wheve you're studying. You need to pick one person - one lawyer, actually - who you just think is a total dumbass, or a total tool. You know, maybe that 3L who was in a class with you, and always raised their hand to ask the stupidest questions? Or some asshole partner at the firm you were at last summer? Get their picture (Didn't your law school have a face book? If he didn't go to your law school, try the internet, or just draw a funny picture) and tape it up in your regular study area or to the binder that you carry back and forth to the library. Any time you're feeling like "I CAN'T DO THIS ANYMORE!" just look at that picture and say, "It's ok. If he can pass on this stupid thing, so can I." I found it to be a confidence booster.

And, yes, if you want to use my photo, that's ok too. It's in the upper right corner. =)

On Professionalism

The scene: A little get together. A "party," if you will. Music in the background, not too loud. Drinks in hard.

The characters: An elementary school art teacher, a college sociology professor, and a young lawyer.

Art teacher (to lawyer): So, are you, like, officially an actual lawyer now?
Lawyer (a little confused): Um, yeah. Officially, I guess.
Art teacher: No, I mean, did you pass the bar and everything?
Lawyer: Oh yeah, I did that a few years ago, actually.
Art teacher: Really? A few years ago? When did you graduate from law school?
Lawyer: A few years ago. I took the bar that summer.
Art teacher: Really? And you passed it the first time?
(Around this time, another lawyer wanders into the conversation.)
Lawyer: Yes. I passed and got admitted that year.
Art teacher: But isn't that rare? I mean, it's hard, right? Didn't J.F.K., Jr. fail the bar like... six times or something?
Lawyer: Nah. I mean, it's tough, but depending on where you went to law school, something like 80-90 percent pass on the first try.
Second Lawyer (somewhat jokingly): Hey, don't say that. It's hard. It's really hard. Don't make it sound too easy.
Lawyer: Oh, yeah. Well, I mean, I guess it is hard. Yeah, really hard.
Sociology professor: And, there you have it. The history of professionalism, right there.

And, those of you studying for the bar exam, keep this in mind. A lot of it is just hype. And someday you'll be guilty of creating hype to make it sound like you too accomplished something that was practically impossible.

What Do Blonde Justice and Saddam Hussein Have In Common?

No, there is no punch line. I'm just going to tell you.

Saddam likes Doritos. I like Doritos, and prefer Cool Ranch. (Although, I heard Saddam actually sprinkles his with water to make them soggy. This sounds disgusting to me.)

Saddam likes Raisin Bran but doesn't like Froot Loops. I, too, like Raisin Bran and don't care for Froot Loops. And, Saddam, may I suggest Cap'n Crunch and Cinnamon Life? Seeing as how we have similar taste in cereal, you may also enjoy these favorites of mine.

Saddam is a "germophobe" and a "neat freak." I, too, sometimes straighten things up, if friends are coming to visit.

Saddam expresses a longing for the days when Ronald Reagan was still president. Me too. Because I was less than 10 years old, and the living was easy. I didn't pay rent, I didn't have to go to work, my mom made cookies for me... oh wait, where was I? Oh yeah, Saddam...

Saddam says that he never had an association with Osama bin Laden. I, too, deny ever having any association with Osama whatsoever.

Saddam says "The Bush father, son, no good." I've been saying that for years! I was practically born saying that!

Saddam says that Bush will never find weapons of mass destruction. I've been saying this for years too! Wow!

And, finally, Saddam offers this advice to young soldiers, on looking for a wife...

You gotta find a good woman. Not too smart, not too dumb. Not too old, not too young. In the middle. One that can cook and clean. Then you thank her, and you go... And Hussein smiled and made the gesture of bending a woman over and spanking her, as if to say, 'This is how you keep her in line,'

I agree that you've got to find a good woman. That's easy enough. "Not too smart, not too dumb?" Well, I take this to mean "Not too smart for you, Not too dumb for you." I mean, if a woman is too smart or too dumb for you, than you won't be able to hold a conversation and you'll lose interest. Likewise with "Not too old, not too young." If someone is too old or too young for you, well, then, it wouldn't work out, right? "One that can cook and clean?" I guess that can't hurt, but it shouldn't be a deal breaker. It might come in handy someday. But then again, it might come in handy if you could... I don't know... juggle... and I don't see that making this list. And the whole spanking thing? Well, I guess if she's into that.

For The Single Girls

My aunt is recently divorced. Well, maybe not so "recently," because I guess it's going on a few years now, but she's kind of just re-entering the "single and dating" thing. She had a shitty husband who treated her (and their kids) like crap and threatened her constantly about what would happen if she ever tried to leave him. She got nothing from her very wealthy husband in the divorce, but she's content to just have her freedom. Unfortunately, her kids are kind of at an awful age now. They're not quite over the divorce, not quite over the fighting and verbal abuse of their father, they throw "Dad" in her face every chance they get and they enjoy testing their mother's boundaries as much as possible.

Every chance I get, I like to remind her that she's an inspiration. That she is the image of an empowering woman. That it took a lot of strength for her to do the right thing and leave that asshole, even if her kids can't see it yet.

She lives far away, but my parents try to visit her at least once or twice a year. Usually, she has a few fix-it projects around the house that she asks my father to fix. (And, as you learned just last week, my father either likes doing these kinds of things, or he has us all fooled.)

Last year, my mother went out there to visit, and my aunt had some curtains or blinds that she wanted to hang, but didn't know how. (Don't even get me started on the fact that one of her sons should've figured it out and done it for her.) So, my mother, who has a fair amount of fix-it skills that she learned from my father, checked out the situation, and then asked my aunt, "Do you have a screwdriver?"

"No," my aunt responded.

"How can you not have a screwdriver?" my mother asked.

"Well, because I read this article. It said that all a single woman needs is a black lace bra and a hammer."

"Then, you'd better get that bra on, get outside, and flag down a guy with a screwdriver."

With that, I bring you MSN's list of 10 things every single woman must own, and E-Spat's much better list and ensuing comments.

Murder - Day by Day

I hope everyone is reading Indiana PD's blog, where she has been blogging about her ongoing murder trial. It's really great reading.

I hope a verdict comes in soon, the suspense is killing me.

We've all got our fingers crossed for you.

Beauty & The Geek - Episode 3

Last week on Beauty & The Geek... Wow, I can't believe how much time they spend on this show either re-capping what just happened or telling you what is about to happen. The good news is that if you haven't started watching Beauty & The Geek yet, you can catch up pretty quick.

Last week, Joe & Erika were eliminated. And if the other housemates are sad that Joe & Erika are gone, it's quickly brushed over. Where are the interviews of Brad crying, "Boo Hoo, I'm so sad, I almost had a shot at a 'beauty' and now it's over, I miss her so much?" Hmm... ok... time for the next challenge.

The men will need to learn about fashion, and the women will need to learn about rocket science to be successful in this week's challenge.

The study sessions about rocket science are rather uneventful. I mean, if you think rocket science is boring, think about how boring it would be to watch someone else learn about rocket science. Then, the women are trying to teach the men about fashion.

"See this bag? Who makes this bag?"
"I don't know. Who?"
"Louis Vuitton. See the LVs?"
"No. Where?"

"You're going to need a lot more... I should get out my Uggs, in case they ask a question about boots." Which leaves me thinking, "Yeah, as if they're really going to ask 'What brand of boots are so last season?'"

First up is the women's challenge, where they need to build a rocket that will launch up into the air. They're given what looks like a rocket kit, complete with instructions, and whoever gets their rocket up in the air first wins. Yes, that's right, they have instructions. Despite this, at least one of the girls (Lauren?) looks like she's not even trying. How can you cry out "I can't do this!" when you have instructions right in front of you? They know how to read, right?

Caitilin (Who the heck decided on this "kite-a-lin" pronunciation, anyway? It drives me crazy.) and Krystal were the only two who appeared to even be participating. Krystal got her rocket together but it only launched about as high as her head and then shot right back down. This gave Caitilin an extra moment to get her rocket going and it launched high up into the air.

Next up, the men's challenge. The plan is that the men will go out shopping for outfits that the women will wear in a fashion show. Have you noticed that in the women's challenges, the women do everything and the men just stand there, and during the men's challenges, the women are always somehow involved - usually wearing bikinis?

Alright, so the first stop for the men is a bathing suit store. Let me just say that I used to work in retail, and there are few things as icky as when a man comes in the store, looks you up and down, and then says, while staring at your chest, "I want to buy something for my girlfriend, she's about your size. What size are you?" But you have to give me credit. Never once did I look at their pants and say, "That's funny, because my boyfriend is a lot bigger than that."

Chuck is guilty of asking every sales clerk "What size are you?" Richard describes the swimsuit that he wants to buy as "butt floss" and eventually settles on a leopard print. Why, because he's seen his partner Mindi wearing so many animal prints? No, you know he's developed a hangup for animal prints based on a magazine he's had hidden under his mattress for years now.

When the guys get home, they ask the girls what size they are. Chuck asks Caitalin and she says she's a size six, which I guess is what all of the store clerks were, because Chuck responds, good, that's what he bought. Meanwhile, Richard asks Mindi the same thing, and Mindi responds that she's a size zero. Richard expresses the same confusion at this that I think most people would. "Zero? Zero? How can you be a zero? That's like... nothing."

That night, we see Chuck giving Scarlett a massage (remember that Chuck won the massage contest) and some flirting en espanol ensues. Scarlett asks Chuck if he's ever had a girlfriend and he responds, "Of course." I just picture all of the production staff watching the tapes and thinking, "Oh crap, there goes our portrayal of these guys as totally desperate. Is there any way we can edit this out and keep the massage?"

The next day, it's time for the fashion show, and some people we've never heard of are there to judge the women as they walk the runway in the clothes that the men have bought. First up was formal wear. Over all, most of the women looked cute. Two of the women have the same dresses, in different colors (it's obvious because they have the same big pin), but Lauren's fits her, and Mindi's is too big. (I also like the color of Lauren's better.) Other than those two (Lauren's was a goldish brown color, Mindi's was an aqua color), I think most guys went with the hard-to-fail little black dress. Overall, I think most of the women looked cute in their dresses.

Next up was casual wear. Again, I thought Lauren looked really cute in a turquoise and white striped top and a white skirt. Good job, Bill. The outfit that Chuck selected for Caitalin was really bizarre. It was this pink pouffy prom dress looking thing, with a black sequined sweater thing tied over it. This was particularly strange because during the shopping segment, there was a clip of Chuck saying something like, "Next we went shopping for the casualwear, and by then I knew exactly what I was looking for." I'm really hoping this wasn't exactly what he was looking for. And, it was also strange, because Caitalin kept telling the other girls, "Don't laugh. I don't want Chuck to feel bad." But then when she went out there in the clothes, she pouted the whole time and it was obvious that she hated the clothes.

Finally, it was time for the swimsuits. I think that most guys know (if they've ever lived with a women or seen some commercials or the cover of a women's magazine) that it's pretty difficult even for a woman to find a perfect bathing suit. So, that said, I think the men, walking into a store not even knowing what size they were buying, did alright. Mindi's bikini bottom was too big and she commented that she felt like she had "poop in her pants." Caitilin's bottom, on the other hand, was so small that it needed to be excavated from her butt after every step she took. Sorry, Chuck might be good at massage and have a little more people skills than some of the other guys, but it definitely does not carry over to fashion. Or, maybe he didn't check out the store clerks' asses enough to before he bought the swimsuit.

Overall, I thought Lauren looked really cute in all of her outfits, so I thought she (oh, I mean, her partner, Bill) was going to win. In the end it was announced that Shawn (Not Scott, sorry. He's so memorable, I couldn't remember his name) had won, but as in the massage competition, we're given no indication as to what the scores were or whether the competition was even close. In announcing their decisions, the fashion-judges commented that they wondered if Chuck even liked Caitilin based on the clothes he picked out. Caitilin says later that she thinks the judges were too hard on Chuck, although I think that this is at least partially Caitilin's fault for pouting her way through the fashion show.

So, again, we have the night where the winners think about who they will send to the elimination room. Again, Richard acts ridiculous, walking around with a dunce cap on that reads "I want an alliance." Mindi comments that she's afraid his behavior will put them at risk for elimination, and she's right.

Later the two winning teams announce who they will send to the elimination room and Richard and Mindi are sent to the elimination room along with Brad and Krystal. In announcing this, Caitilin remarks that the point of the "experiment" is to see everyone mature and learn new things and that Richard doesn't seem to be doing this.

In the elimination room, the women are asked questions about astronomy (keeping with the "rocket science" theme), such as "How many times a year does the earth rotate around the sun?" The men are asked questions about fashion, such as "What do the letters DKNY stand for?" I thought that Krystal seemed annoyed that she was in the elimination room again, and I thought it seemed that she was giving up.

In the end, Brad and Krystal were eliminated. As everyone hugged goodbye, Richard snuck in a kiss on Krystal. So, maybe he was breaking down some walls.

And now that's she gone, I think I can say this. Let me first say that I see a lot of transgender people in my work. A lot that I know of (mostly because their rap sheet says "male" on it), and there may even be some that completely passed for women and even their rap sheet says "female." I think that I've seen many different levels of "passability" (if you'll allow to me make up such a word) - from people that I would have believed were female had I not had their rap sheet in front of me, to those with a big Adam's apple and a 5 o'clock shadow. And at the risk of sounding catty, Krystal looks like a guy to me. I kind of thought there was a strong possibility that the "punkd" twist to the show would be that at least one, maybe more, of the women were men. If you don't believe me, next week when they do the intro and show you who was voted off last week, just pause it for a minute and take a good look. She also had the hairdo with the hair brushed across her face, which I thought was an attempt to feminize her otherwise male-looking face. But, with her gone, most of the other girls have me believing that they're really women, so it looks like this twist isn't going to happen.

Stay tuned for next week - when the men have to go to a club and get womens' phone numbers, and the women have to give makeovers to the guys. I am looking forward to the results of these makeovers. Oh, and they're looking for beauties and geeks for next season. Details here. (And if you make it, I promise not to write that you're a dude that looks like a lady. Or that you're a lady who looks like a dude. Or whatever.)

Friday Spies

(courtesy of BTQ)

1. Which relationship will last longer, Brad Pitt and AngelinaJolie ("Brangelina"), or Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes ("TomKat")? God, I am so freaked out by the TomKat. I was actually going to write a whole post about it. But, here goes... I figure that Katie Holmes and I are about the same age. (Almost exactly.) And I remember, as a kid, that my next door neighbor's older sister had a poster of Tom Cruise hanging in her room. Him and Kirk Cameron.

Now, it's not so much that I'm bothered about the age difference. Honestly, I think that if a 26-year-old met an almost-43-year-old on the street, or at the bar, on through a friend, and they seemed happy together, that'd be fine with me. Matter of fact, I have a cousin who is 40, and his girlfriend is a little younger than me (I think she's 23), and I was the first one to say "Hey, if they're both happy, who are we to judge?" And he's happier than I've ever seen him. That's not the point.

The point is that it's different because she knew him - or knew of him for so long. It'd be more like if you started dating... I don't know... your next door neighbor who was 17 years older than you. Or a friend of the family or something. It just seems weird.

I mean, I don't know... I had a big thing for Joey McIntyre at the age of 10. I dreamed I'd marry him. But if he came knocking on my door I wouldn't be interested. Maybe that's different because he's more of a has-been. But, still, I mean, she saw him go through a whole marriage to Nicole Kidman and everything.

Ok, that's all I have to say about that, is that it's weird. And, on that note, I think it will last longer than Bradgelina. (The relationships I always think will last, don't. And vice versa.)

2. Less importantly, which will have nuclear bombs first, North Korea or Iran? North Korea. Because we seem to be keeping less of an eye on them.

3. What is your dream car? A Saab convertible. Actually, I liked the 1990s style Saabs' design better than the new ones, but I'd gladly take a brand new Steel Grey Metallic Saab 9-3 convertible. If you'd like to buy me one, leave a comment and I'll get right back to you.

4. What book have you read the most times? The criminal procedure law. (I don't tend to re-read books that I love, unfortunately.)

5. Are you a matchmaker? Nope. Wish I could say I was. But I don't think I've ever matchmaked anyone.

But, I have one funny story. I had a friend that I met when she was single. Sometimes I would hang out with her just the two of us, sometimes we'd hang out with the boyfriend. Well, now, strangely, she has a boyfriend just like the boyfriend. Same name, same profession, same hair, same everything. I guess that's sort of like matchmaking, isn't it? Or, inspiration, at least.

Can The State Create Reasonable Suspicion?

This proposal would require special plates for repeat drunken drivers.

According to the article, Georgia, Minnesota, and Ohio require special license plates for convicted drunk drivers, and the plates in Ohio are bright orange.

Would driving with these special plates create enough reasonable suspicion to justify a stop? Or, even if they do not create reasonable suspicion per se, could they contribute enough to make even otherwise overlooked behavior, such as driving just slightly above the speed limit, grounds for a stop? The obvious slippery slope argument here is that we could have every kind of criminal labeled so that the police could keep a special eye on them, a la The Scarlet Letter.

"Hey, that guy with the 'M' on his shirt was previously convicted of marijuana possession. Let's go search him!"

And what in the world makes them think that this would be effective? It doesn't stop drunk drivers from driving rental cars. And, as the article points out, there's no guarantee that it's the convicted drunk driver driving at any particular time, and not a friend or family member.

Ostensibly, the purpose is to prevent deadly accidents. But how is this going to prevent accidents? People will jump out of the crosswalks when they see license plates beginning in "D" coming at them? Cars will pull over and let them pass? Parents will make their kids, who had been jumping around in the back seat, buckle their seatbelts? No, they'll just get pulled more over. I guess the concept is that this will cause less accidents because they'll spend more time pulled over, digging out their license and registration, and less time actually driving?

It just amazes me how much power MADD and similar organizations have over the legislature. I guess drunk driving is an easy issue to get tough on and not look bad to anyone. That and sex offenders. So sad that they can't spend their time doing something to actually help somebody.

Dad's Day Advice Sought

First, let me tell you a little about my Dad.

He does not work in an office. So, desk thingees, ties and cufflinks are out. He does not smoke cigars or drink wine or any kind of liquor or mixed drinks. He does not golf. So, basically everything on every single website that has "Father's Day Recommendations" is out. He's not impressed with things just because they're expensive or fancy - brand names mean nothing to him.

He does drink Budweiser. He watches football. He fishes. He likes to build things or fix things (ok, maybe as the daughter I just decided that he "liked" fixing things, not that he was "obligated" to fix things, but either way, he spends a lot of time fixing things.)

But I don't know enough about tools and fixing stuff to know what tools he has or what tools he would find useful. On a few occasions in the past I've gotten him cool tool gadget stuff (or, what I thought was cool), and never really saw him use it, so I'd rather try to find something he'll actually use. Same with fishing. I don't really know enough about fishing to guarantee that I'd get the right thing. (One time, I got him some kind of fishing pole, but later my mother told me he had to exchange it because it was a freshwater, not a saltwater pole.)

When not fixing things, he likes to hang out in a hammock, Homer Simpson style. Sometimes he reads books. He generally likes fiction or biographies of, for example, fisherpeople (He loved "The Perfect Storm" and books like that). He sometimes likes history, but generally local history. And military and war stories. For Christmas I got him a subscription to Smithsonian Magazine and Air & Space, and he loves both of them.

He likes to eat. He's got a sweet tooth and loves spicy food too. He likes to experiment with cooking and grilling. But I feel like I get him something to do with grilling or cooking every father's day and birthday.

There's the added element that I probably won't see him again for a few weeks, so something easily shippable seems like a good idea.

Right now I'm considering either something like these gift baskets or possibly a book by Linda Greenlaw (I think he read this one last summer and talked about it all year).

Since a case of Budweiser doesn't seem particularly shippable.

Anyone have any better suggestions?

Think quick, time is running out!

Jackson Beat It

So, just like I said, a California jury just cannot convict a celebrity.

My theory is that people move to, or live in, California because they're enchanted by celebrity. And this is reflected in the juries.

Or maybe it's just that celebrities get the best defense money can buy.

In addition, nearly 58% of the voters in my poll were correct (if we count both "Not Guilty" votes and "Guilty But Will Be Acquitted" votes.) I might have to call on you, the voters, to predict the outcome of my next trials.

Beauty &The Geek - Episode 2

The episode starts off with a little recap of last week's episode, in case you didn't see it the 2 times the WB aired it last week or read my recap.

Then we see the remaining housemates after last week's vote off and they're all so shocked that they didn't even get to say goodbye. (Um, didn't we all hear the host say to the 2 teams up for elimination "Pack your bags and say your goodbyes?" Did you think he was just kidding?) But, ok, I guess I know what they meant.

This week's challenges are auto mechanics for the ladies and massage for the men. Then the teams have a day to practice and study. It's funny to see the men try to give massages, and it's pretty obvious that they've never given or received a massage before. But you'd think that maybe they'd read about it somewhere or something...

In one hallway, Mindi sits Richard down to give him a massage. I think that's the right idea - once he's experienced a decent massage, he'll have something to imitate. Right away, though, he shouts out "Ouch!" and insists that Mindi "did something" to his shoulder. He can't even go on with the practice, he's so injured. I don't know whether Mindi is a really bad masseuse or what, but that's just a little weird. Has Richard just never been touched before ever?

In another part of the mansion, Bill is sure they'll win the automotive challenge because, after all, he's the vice-president of the Dukes of Hazard fan club! At first I thought that was crazy talk, I mean, just because you're the fan club of a tv show doesn't mean you know anything practical about a subject. But the boyfriend convinced me that maybe, since he was always into Dukes of Hazard, that inspired him to get into cars more. Or maybe even the fact that he was into cars led to an interest in Dukes of Hazard. I mean, look at me, I love Legally Blonde and I'm also a lawyer, so I guess that's similar. Bill's partner, Lauren, comments that she feels pressure to win the challenge because of Bill's status in the club.

And now it's time for the challenge and the teams are standing in front of 6 cars. And the girls are wearing little short shorts and and little pink shirts that tie in the front. Bill comments that his fantasy has come true because all of the girls are in Daisy Duke shorts. And that's when I start to think, hey, wait a minute, why did they make them wear these outfits? Well, we know the answer to that, but still... I mean, they didn't make the guys wear costumes for any of their challenges.

The girls have to check the oil in the car, change the air filter, and change a tire. And here's what I thought was so weird... it's not like this is a subject that most of the guys know a lot about. (Except for the Dukes of Hazard guy.) I just don't think this falls under the category of general nerd intelligence. So, for the most part, the guys are just standing there watching. In the end, Caitilin won.

Next up, it's time for the guys to give their massages. And who will be the lucky recipients? The ladies, of course. Now we see a few clips of ladies saying "eeew" and of the guys commenting that they've never touched a woman before. One clip shows Chuck, the med student, rubbing his hands together and saying that most of these guys weren't trained to listen to a body with their hands.

The women come down wearing robes and take them off to reveal their bikinis. And, it's not just like "Ok, they're wearing bikinis, what else should they wear?" But there's definitely some camera angles so that you can check out the women pretty closely. What does this have to do with massage?

Now we see the women getting their massages. They're blindfolded and wear earplugs, and every few minutes the men switch and the women rate them. Some of the women are moaning "Mmm... yeah... that's good... right there," which I'm sure is not going to help these guys, who have never touched a woman before, concentrate at all. And here's another thing - I can see why, if a friend were to give you a massage, you'd comment with "Yeah, that's good" because they're not a professional, they don't know how you want it. But when you're getting a professional massage, are you supposed to moan like that? Just wondering.

Just as predicted, Chuck the med student wins. They don't really give us the breakdown so we can see whether or not it was a close race. And, once again, a team has won both of the challenges.

Over the next day, Chuck and Caitalin have a tough decision to make about who they will eliminate. Richard decides that his best bet is to brown nose the winners. Quite literally. We see him rubbing some mud on his nose, walking around the house with signs on, it's kind of ridiculous. And Chuck is obviously annoyed by it, so you almost start to wonder if he'll send Richard home just because of it.

We also learn that while Caitilin is interested in winning the HUGE CASH PRIZE, Chuck doesn't really care at all about the strategy of winning.

In the end, they do what was probably the smartest thing, strategically, and put both Erica & Joe and Krystal & Brad up for elimination. This guarantees breaking up their little romance that could turn into a strategic alliance. Erica cries, she doesn't want to be separated from Brad. Brad looks kind of sad but doesn't seem to care all that much (or maybe he doesn't show emotion well). But, you'd sort of think it'd be the other way around - that this geek would be really upset to lose the prospect of a cute girl, and that a "life size Barbie" would figure that she could get any guy she wants and move on. Another thing is that Erica interviews that she used to be really shallow, and now she isn't anymore, because she has a thing for a geek... and I gotta ask - Isn't it a little shallow that she fell for the med student in the house? I mean, not that it's a bad thing, I'm just saying, couldn't there be an ulterior motive there? [Nevermind, I stand corrected. She fell for "the mensa member," not the med student. I kept getting them confused for some reason. Even as I wrote this, I kept interchanging "Brad" and "Chuck." But Mensa member? Probably no shallowness there.]

They go to the elimination room, where the men have to answer questions about massage (with answers like "shiatsu" and "aromatherapy") and the women have to answer questions about car repair ("odometer" and "spark plug"). Strangely, Joe gets a bunch of questions wrong and doesn't really seem to upset by it. In one particular moment, he looks almost happy. You've gotta wonder whether Joe was possibly throwing the competition and ready to get out of there. So, Joe and Erica get eliminated, Erica cries, and Joe looks like "Oh well, it was fun, but it's over."

And that's that. Tune in next week. Actually, I'm not sure I'll keep doing this. It took so long. (And yes, I could've left some things out and made it shorter, but I didn't. Whatever.)

And another thing, in doing some searches about Beauty and the Geek (in the tv-journalism sector, meaning people who write about tv, not people who give news on tv, we call this "fact checking"), I saw a lot of comments about Erica being a slut for jumping into bed with Brad the first night she met him. Yes, I thought it was a little strange too (but, on the other hand, everyone in the house was sleeping together, so what's the big deal, and I doubt it was actually much more than sleeping), but the point is... I didn't see a single comment that Brad was a slut for sleeping with her on the first night. People, we need to get over our double standards.

And, finally, speaking of television recaps, I'm still waiting to hear what Woman of the Law thought of the Red Sox Queer Eye.

Just a Quick Link

I'm working on a recap of Beauty and The Geek, Episode 2. In the meantime, you've got to read this life lesson over at Barely Legal. So true, so true.

The Size of The Fight In The Dog

Last month, when I went to visit my mother, I found myself near a K-Mart. Now, when you don't live near a K-Mart, it's kind of an amusing thing to check one out when you get a chance. So I did.

I had fun at K-Mart and got lots of things that I hadn't seen yet around here (not that I'd been looking): the new Domino magazine, some new type of Olay Daily Facials that smells pretty nice, and a bottle of the new Diet Coke sweetened with Splenda.

On the way out, they had a bunch of those machines where you can buy little toys in eggs for fifty cents. I decided to put in a few quarters to get these little dog toys, because I like dogs and they looked cute. Also, there was a display in the machine that showed the different dogs and said what their names were, and yes, I was that swayed that I should "Collect Them All!" In the end, I got two. I thought they were cute, I looked at their names (I remember one was "killer" but what was the other one?) and I stuck them in my bag.

I didn't really think of them again until today when I was getting something else out of my purse. I decided to break open the eggs and check out the dogs.

Here's the first one:

And here's the second one:

Maybe there's something wrong with me, but it only took me a few seconds to notice that the little dog had some really big business, if you know what I mean. This is supposed to be a toy! Here, check it out, you know you want to:

So I looked at the first dog a little more carefully to see if there was anything notable about his, um, business. There wasn't really (maybe it's a girl?), but I noticed, written on it's belly, "HoodHounds."

(I tried to take a picture, but you just couldn't see it.)

That made me put the dogs down on the table while I did a search for HoodHounds. Well, look what I noticed when I put the little dog down on the table"

That's right. He not only had some big... business... he's also doing his business!

As those crazy internet kids would say, "WTF?"

Update: Here's the website I found for HoodHounds. And here's one where you can buy a few of the HoodHounds ($3 each! Wow, maybe this must be the best K-Mart investment ever!), and you can see that there's another one (Slick) with a raised leg. I also learned from this that the other (girl?) dog is named "Capo." Whatever that means.

Beauty & The Geek - Episode 1

So, what did everyone think of Beauty & The Geek last night?

If you didn't see it, here's what you missed: (Yes, here is your very own TwoP-style recaplet. Except, much shorter, because I have to get ready for work.) They took 7 beautiful girls. I'd guess that they were all about 18-24, and they all have occupations like "Beer Spokesperson," "Life-Size Barbie Model" and "NBA Dancer" and aren't too bright. Ok, fine, let's not discriminate, "academically challenged."

They also took 7 intelligent guys. The guys are not so attractive, but have occupations like "Neuro-something-or-other" and "Boy Scout leader" and "Mensa member." Wait, mensa member is an occupation? Oh, and another guy's occupation was "President, Dukes of Hazard fan club." Whatever, you know these guys live in their moms' basements and play dungeons & dragons all day. One guy (the Dukes of Hazard guy) mentions being a 29-year-old virgin, and at least one other guy mentioned that he had never been kissed.

The boyfriend thought it was a little exaggerated or a little staged. (He thinks this with most reality shows.) But, let me tell you, the geekiest guy... Richard... is exactly like almost every guy in my high school. Although, I admit, it seems that he plays up his geekiness, but that could be defense mechanism - as in, hey, if I'm going to be a geek, I'm going to be the geekiest, and at least entertain people with it.

(The boyfriend, reading over my shoulder to make sure I didn't misquote him, warns me that I went to such a geeky high school that I may have just blown my anonymity. Yes, people all of the country will be writing in to say "I know where you went to school!")

Also, did it bother anyone else that they were all white? What, only white people can be beauties? Or geeks? C'mon, WB, where's the diversity?

The men and women are paired into teams (But why do they have to sleep in the same bed? "It's not a 'dating' show, it's a 'social experiment.'" What does bed sharing add to the experiment?) and engage in competitions. Basically, the womens' competition involved intelligence (this episode, they were asked 5th grade questions like "Spell 'tattoo,'" which I happen to think is a tough word to spell) and the mens' competition involved pop culture or general... I don't know... coolness (this episode, it was a dance competition). They each get to tutor their teammate a little bit before the competition.

One great exchange from a tutoring session:
"What was the date of D-Day?"
"I don't know."
"No, 1942 is when Columbus sailed the ocean blue."
You're both wrong anyway, D-Day was 6/6/1944. And Columbus sailed the ocean blue in 1492. Moving on...

One guy (Chuck) keeps getting nosebleeds whenever he's nervous (which is a lot). He says something like "I was getting a little hypertensive," and his partner just stands there, obviously thinking "What the heck did he just say?" He got another nosebleed during the dance competition (which I thought they should have won!) and he was amazed that his partner (Caitilin, pronounced kite-a-lyn) wiped the blood away with her hand. Yeah, so was I. Chuck said something to the camera like, "Being in the medical field, we usually try to avoid touching blood directly." Um, yeah, being in most fields we try to avoid touching other people's blood. Maybe she assumed that because he's such a geek there's no chance he'd have anything "catchy" in his blood? Or maybe she never learned too much about those risky blood-borne illnesses? Either way, I'd watch out for her. Who knows what kind of risky behaviors she's engaged in?

The winners of each competition (this week, they happened to be partners), pick 2 teams (the woman winner picks one, the male winner picks one) to go into the "elimination room." But, watch out, the one you pick to send into the elimination room that doesn't get eliminated may come back to haunt you.

The two teams sent to the elimination room engage in a quiz-off. The woman, again, are asked to answer questions like "Who is the prime minister of England?" and the men are asked questions like, "Who sings 'In Da Club?'"

Already, some of the women are developing sympathy for the geeks. Standing in front of an audience answering the "5th grade questions," one of the women commented that she felt really awkward or embarrassed and "This must be how Joe (her partner) feels everytime he goes into the mall." Actually, so far, I'd guess that Joe is the cutest and least geeky of them all. If that Clay Aiken guy could win American Idol, I don't see how this guy could be labeled a "geek," but we'll have to wait and see him a little more, I guess.

Although it's not a dating show, I'll be interested to see what romances develop. I wonder if part of the social experiment is how attractive the men around you start to look when there's been no one else around for a few weeks. (As far as I can tell, that's how the guys in my high school "got some," by the way.) Already, one romance may be developing between Erika and Brad. They're not partners, but she snuck into his room on the first night for some "company." And then, when she was sent to the elimination room, she mentioned that she wanted to avoid elimination just because she would "never see Brad again."

As if she was more concerned with that and less concerned with losing out on the big cash prize. That's right, ladies and gentlemen, the teams are also playing for a huge cash prize. How much, you ask? $250,000. Which I assume they're splitting, but maybe not. C'mon, Ashton, you couldn't put up a little of your own dough for this experiment?

So, that's the recap. (Oh, and in case you're wondering, Eric and Cheryl were eliminated.) Overall, I thought it was cute. And, since there isn't a whole lot on television over the summer, I'll probably "season pass" it. So, expect more recaps to come, and let me know what you thought.