Category Archives: a taste for tv

Real Life on Reality TV: Ready for Love

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So, did anyone watch “Ready for Love”? It was an NBC matchmaking reality TV show that ended recently and was apparently canceled because only I am sappy enough to watch a series about three wildly successful and ridiculously handsome men who are each matched with twelve somewhat successful but still ridiculously good-looking women and have nine weeks to whittle down the group one-by-one to find the least-unfunny and least-unsmart of the group. Which is what love is.

I secretly thought it was a pretty great show. In that it’s teeeeerrifying to see grown people admit to what dating’s really like when you’re superficial. The matchmakers would meet with the women before their dates with the men every week and give them gems of advice such as:

• “Men don’t like humor. If you find yourself about to say something funny, keep your mouth shut and instead find a way to touch him.”

• “Never do anything to emasculate him. If he offers you his coat, take it whether you’re cold or not so he’ll feel like he’s taking care of you.

• “Flirt with your eyes. But also make him feel like he’s at home in them. But not an incestual home. Don’t become his sister.”

I strangely don’t remember a lot of “you’re perfect just the way you are, so if he doesn’t like that, screw him and his Honduran philanthropist self”, shockingly. And yet one of the guys–Tim Lopez, the frontman for the Plain White T’s (oh, god, the unnecessary apostrophe)–somehow ended up with the least-pretty girl there in his top 2. I guess he liked her personality somehow, even though her personality seemed to me like the classic Only Pretending to Care About Love to Get a Record Deal Out of Your Reality TV Appearance.

It was pretty clear from about episode 3 who each guy was going to choose, and then we had to sit through six more weeks of the guys “wrestling” with their “feelings” for the other women. And the moment the women didn’t reciprocate those somewhat shady feelings, they were sent home. So you’re vying with 11 other women for the affection of one dude who’s telling all of you that he’s feeling the exact same feelings for you each in turn, but if you hesitate to fall in love with him in the interest of preserving your heart, you’re not putting your back into it, and you’re out. Okay.

The one brilliant move of the show was made by said Honduran philanthropist, who recognized whom he ultimately wanted to end up with when he had three women left, sent two of them home one week, and rose from underneath the stage in his glass box (this is real life) alone. He then proceeded to awkwardly but all-the-same-impressively climb the 40-foot-high structure where they line the women up at the end of each show (also real life) to be with his lady. And then they spent the finale episode just, like, hanging out together and looking pretty bored while the other guys got to make grand gestures of love to their chosen women.

But anyway. It was OBVIOUS that Plain White Unnecessary Apostrophe was going to choose this woman Sara, who was certainly pretty enough but not even in the same league as the other women, who were genuinely Miss Americas and stuff. Her features were severe, and when she smiled, she looked like a cartoon rendering of a gargoyle. She was also one of those people who isn’t fat but somehow just carries her weight badly, youknowwhatImean?

But she had this great backstory about being engaged to a guy who fought cancer for three and a half years, and she stuck by him the entire time, and that means Plain White Unnecessary Apostrophe could really count on her to stick with him through the tough times. Like when his band only has that one semi-hit. Or when he cheats on her with his cutoff-shorts-wearing friends, who call themselves the Buffalo Club and are sooooo gay together.

Week after week, I thought he was going to send her home for her pug nose, but he kept keeping her and kept talking about how deep their connection was. The world didn’t make sense, but I of course wasn’t upset about it, and I finally gave in and decided to like them together. When it got down to the final 2, I was pretty appalled at how he was clearly in love with Sara but continued to make out with Jenna, who was younger and even blonder and just all-around hotter despite her taste in purple chiffon rhinestoned dresses.

I felt pretty bad for Sara, who would be married to Plain White Unnecessary Apostrophe soon and would have to look back at the show and watch her husband enjoy this one. last. chance. to more or less cheat on her with the better-looking, more-fun woman whom he liked enough to keep around until the final 2 and would therefore live in his mind as the one who could’ve been, the one he let get away, once he gets bored with all of the cancer-fiancé deep-feelings talk.

So Tim took Sara down to the underground garden (totally real life) in the finale to reveal whether she was his pick or not, and she accidentally said something about the rest of their life together before she realized that could be pretty embarrassing if he didn’t end up choosing her, but of COURSE he was going to choose her, because he’s a sensitive rockstar and she wrote a goddamned song for him.


The end.

The #1 Reason to Take Public Transportation

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In NYC, when you want car service, you usually stand at a streetcorner with your arm in the air and engage in physical warfare with anyone who attempts to steal your yellow cab. It’s certainly convenient to be able to step out the door and into a cab, but try to find one when your flight is actually on time or when you have fifteen minutes to make it to your dinner reservation and suddenly every cab in the city is off duty.

There are two main companies providing call-ahead car service: Dial 7 and Carmel. Dial 7 came out with this commercial featuring a way-too-friendly driver years ago:

And Carmel thought, “My, what a classy ad. Let’s strike back with this really creepy one in which these pathetic women replace male companionship with a car”:

People talked about it. People balked at it. But we all eventually moved on. And so they released this one next:

I tend to fast-forward through commercials on my DVR, so I hadn’t really seen this one when my boyfriend made me stop on it one day. “Watch the guy in the black tie,” he said. “Did they purposely hire the worst lip-syncers in the world for this?”

Read the exciting conclusion here!, and then tell me about your awful local commercials.

No “Game of Thrones” Spoilers Contained Within

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On Saturday morning, I took a cue from Han + Diana and invited Kamran and our friends Nik and Marco to The Dutch for herbed cocktails, fried chicken, and pie so tall you could use it for a baby’s highchair:

lemon meringue pie at The Dutch, NYC

Marko is the thoughtful brother, and Nik is the outrageous brother, and together, they’re a very good time. We spent most of the meal signing each other up for the Draw Something app on our various Apple products, and then I tried Kamran’s tripe and almost threw up in my mouth because it’s cow stomach lining, but then I stopped myself because it’s delicious. And it should be, because it’s made by the same chef who owns Locanda Verde with Robert De Niro. I tell you that so you’ll be dazzled by my brushes with celebrity.

Afterward, I went back to my own apartment and spent the next ten hours marathoning the entire first season of “Game of Thrones” with my friend/roommate/landlord/co-worker, Jack, and my friend Kim, whom I will always refer to as “Kim of Good Hair, Kim Luck”, even though her website has been defunct for almost a year now. As soon as I arrived, Jack handed me a save-the-date postcard for Beth‘s wedding, and Kim acted as if it’s weird that I actually want to attend the nuptials of a person I only know from the Internet, even though there was a time when I only knew Kim from the Internet, and now we’re NYCBFFs.

Game of Thrones Direwolf Collage

We ate direwolf cupcakes with grey sprinkles, looked at The Khaleesi’s boobs, and picked and re-picked our favourite characters from 6 p.m. to 4 a.m. and then had a sleepover for all of five hours before I had to get to Kamran’s and Kim had to get to the gym or something ridiculous, and then neither of us watched the premiere of season two. So don’t spoil it for us. A-holes.

Amar’e Stoudemire’s Battle of the Bulge

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My friend Nik* caught this little gaff live last night during the Knicks/Bucks game:

What commentator Al Trautwig meant to say:

It’s much more complicated for Amar’e Stoudemire. He did not finish Saturday’s game against Detroit. An MRI reveals a bulging disc in his lower back, and it will be treated non-surgically.

What commentator Al Trautwig actually said:

It’s much more complicated for Amar’e Stoudemire. He did not finish Saturday’s game against Detroit. An MRI reveals a bulging dick in his lower back, and it will be treated non-surgically.

The comments on the video are unstoppable:

“Hate it when my dick bulges after a long day of hooping.”

“Dunno about you guys but I’d hate to wake up with a bulging dick in my lower back.”

Thank you, sweet Internet, for the bountiful gifts you so selflessly provide.

*Nik can also be thanked for the brilliant title of this post.

“Survivor: One World”: Colton Goes Home with an Apendicitis and the World Rejoices

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Am I right in thinking that tonight’s “Survivor” ended in the only way it could in a perfect and just world? Colton Cumbie, the biggest jerk in “Survivor” history in my mind, went home with a suspected appendicitis after ensuring Christina all episode long that she was the next to go, that she had no friends, that she could wait out her sentence on the island or “jump in the fire” and end it for herself.

photo by CBS

I know that Russell Hantz is largely regarded as “Survivor”‘s most evil mastermind, but Colton was an even worse kind of awful: the kind who cried like the kid picked last on the playground when he was the only gay guy on a team full of macho men he assumed wouldn’t accept him and then became a snotty, snobby diva spewing hate the moment he didn’t have to fear being voted off every single week. At least Russell had the decency to be terrible all of the time. Watching Colton fall from grace—from a country club brat who laughed when he said the one black person he knows was the family’s servant to a wretch coiled up on the bare ground, hilariously thinking his stomach pain was constipation—felt so, so sweet.

And then he took the hidden immunity idol home with him to boot instead of passing it along to his closest ally (Alicia), the only person who took pity on him during his sickness (Christina, who is a princess among women), or one of his teammates for a future Tribal Council. I was amused by him for the first episode, I felt sorry for him for the second episode, and I wanted him full of gangrene by the third episode. If we see a future “Survivor: All Stars” with Colton in the cast, I’m out.