a disseration on a reality tv cast member

Another old post from the archives.  This one came about as a result of a gchat conversation.  As usual, I was breaking down Reality TV for a friend, who considers me an expert because I spend most of my conscious time watching or reading up on different reality personalities.  After season 3’s Bachelor Pad ended with this guy taking all the money for himself, ABC cancelled the show in what was THE MOST DRAMATIC CANCELLATION IN TELEVISION HISTORY.

Originally written: August 20, 2011

I got caught up in a conversation about TV because the person talking to me considers me a connoisseur of the television. After going off about how I missed my opportunity to be on Real World (damn you cut off age!) and about why I consider reality TV fantasy TV, I began to delve into the beauty that is The Bachelor franchise.

It started off innocently enough, with me explaining the premise of Bachelor Pad, the newest iteration of the Bachelor/ette franchise. It’s only in its second season, but this shit is establishing itself as pure gold. It takes the romance element of your standard dating show and twists it with the competitive, I’ll-do-anything-for-a-buck mentality of shows like Big Brother and Survivor. Throw in a ton of narcissism and a dash of crazy mental instability (not a whole lot, but just enough to make it interesting), and you’ve got yourself a winner.

The beauty of Bachelor Pad is that you don’t have to be a winner on some sappy show like the Bachelor/ette to compete. In fact, with the exception of the infamous Jake and Vienna, no one on Bachelor Pad’s two season has been a winner of one of the other shows. Usually, they were the token crazy or loveable loser or dramatically dumped or something to that effect. It’s the people that the viewer wants to see again, because you know they’re going to do or say something ridiculous.

The premise of the show is to make it to the end in order to win money, either as a couple of individually. The twist in the first season was the couple at the end had to decide independently if they would split the money or if they wanted to keep it all for his/her self. If they both chose split, they split it. If one chose keep it and one chose split, the person who chose keep it gets to keep it all. If they both chose keep it, the rest of the cast gets to split the money and they get none. OOOOOOOOH. Shockingly, they split it. Nothing dramatic there.

Anyway, who’s to say what this season will bring. And I’m digressing from my original intent of this post, which was to talk about one cast member in particular.

On this week’s episode, Jackie was eliminated in a not too shocking rose ceremony. The shocker (heh) came when Ames eliminated himself to follow love and be with Jackie, whom he met mere days earlier on the show. It was touching and heartfelt and romantic and, I admit it, I cried. Of course they aren’t together anymore, but still. It was sweet.

What I really want to dig into is this Ames character. He was just on The Bachelorette, and here’s a video montage of his elimination. See if there’s something you notice that’s a little… off… about him:

If you thought: WHY THE FUCK DOESN’T THIS GUY CLOSE HIS MOUTH EVER? Then you are right on track.

Here’s the thing. I really, really, REALLY want to be attracted to this guy. I mean, he’s kinda got a rockin’ bod:

Plus, he’s super educated. A quick google search on this dude turns up the information that he got his undergrad at Yale, his masters at Columbia and is working on his PHD at Harvard. Is this dude for real?

On top of all of that, he didn’t carry the usual machismo douche bagginess that guys on these types of shows usually sport. He was kind of artsy almost, and definitely a renaissance man.

Here’s his hometown date.

Skip to the end where he and Ashley are all alone, and he’s trying to romance her with a picnic. He says this shit about there being more magic in the ordinary and all kinds of bs that would normally turn my stomach, but the way he just so casually mentions it… it’s kind of nerdy and educational more than contrived. It seems like this is how he is. And it’s weird and kind of wonderful.


Just. Close. It. Up. When. You’re. Not. Talking.

I want to like this guy. But he always looks vacant. All herp-a-derp-a-doo. Maybe that’s part of what makes him appear genuine. But god damn it. Is he super hot or is he a dud? I CANNOT MAKE A SOUND JUDGEMENT.

During his entire time on the Bachelorette, I was always most conflicted about him. I’d hate him one second and then be like wow this dude is kind of interesting then right back to ugh. I’d go from thinking he’s a total bore to someone totally unique.

Fast forward to Bachelor Pad, where once again he looks all blank faced and dopey all the time but then he does something adorable by leaving with a chick he barely knows under the guise of potential love. And it seemed FUCKING REAL. I’m so confused.

What is up with this dude? Why is he such an enigma to me? Is he some kind of super genius who is tricking us all? Is he setting himself to be a reality juggernaut? Or is he really just this odd?

I need to sit this guy down in a room and figure out if it’s for real or not. Or I need to find a new hobby. One of those things.



A few years ago, I had a pretty terrible blog that I would occasionally post amazingly brilliant entries to.  While I will not link to the blog (too embarrassing!), I will post the original content for your reading enjoyment.

Originally written: June 8, 2011

Yesterday, Shanna and I proved to be at true athletes by taking a bike ride with a giant group of bicyclists.  In order to prepare for and recover from such athletic endeavors, I have a few tips.

1. Make sure your equipment is in tip top shape.
For reference, here is a photo of my sweet ride:

It is a Huffy three-speed from the 70s that I bought off some dude on Craigslist. It currently will not shift back into first. So I am forced to power through on second.

2. Make sure your body is in tip top shape.
To do this, you should participate in good eating habits. Earlier in the day, I housed down a delicious meal of chicken nuggets and waffle fries from Chick-Fil-A with a Gatorade as my beverage. To restore my electrolytes of course. You should also practice regular stretching by sprawling out on your couch for at least two hours every night.

3. Wear the right outfit.
You want everyone to know you’re burning up a sweat, so wear a shirt that will show it. A t-shirt in a light enough color should be good. Make sure it’s fitted enough to really soak up that perspiration. Jorts are also encouraged. Because they look cool.

4. Don’t plan ahead.
What started out as a casual bike ride to grab a few drinks and sit outside turned into a bike cruise when we ran into a couple of people we know. There was no time to be psyched out, allowing your body to just react without having to think too much. Also, you don’t have enough time to come up with a good excuse when someone is in front of your face.

5. Hydrate before hand.
After being roped into this bike ride, it was important that we get our insides perfectly hydrated. Obviously this meant quickly slamming a Miller High Life immediately before embarking.

6. Know your place.
As amateurs to the scene, we knew we should probably hang to the back and pace ourselves. That way, we could pant encouraging words to one another without having to shout and exert ourselves even more. Also, no one could see us struggling. Or looking really cool. It’s one of those two things.

7. Know when to quit.
We totally kicked ass at bike riding, until a gigantic hill proved to be too steep. We ditched the group and walked our bikes to the top of the hill, legs trembling. By then everyone was long gone, and we could breathe through our mouths without fear of looking like assholes.

8. Hydrate post athletic conquest.
Your body will be depleted post exercise, so it is important to stop at a bar on the way home. We indulged in waters and Modelo Especials to replenish ourselves and cool down.

9. Never stop talking about your athleticism
As you’re coming down from your exercise high, you should never stop talking about how you just rode your bike for 20 minutes and are sweating like a pig and are a total and complete athlete now. This will keep your endorphins up and help you burn just a little bit more. It will also remind everyone around you that they are inferior because they did not just participate in feats of athleticism like you did.

Shanna and I did this by posting this picture of me on Facebook to let everyone know that we had participated in sport and are awesome for it:

10. Take a few days off
You don’t want to over do it, so make sure you take a few days off after your quest to let your body bounce back. I will probably not take a bike ride until tomorrow, when I plan on going to Recovery Room to get wasted off of Gray Goose and pineapple juice and play naked lady Mega Touch.

Being an athlete is hard work, but it’s awesome. With these tips, you can live this amazing lifestyle. Good luck.

Darren Daulton

Originally posted at The Baseball Project blog for Yep Roc Records.


Darren Daulton was my favorite baseball player when I was 8 or 9 years old. Back then he was scruffy and buff yet kind of handsome (for a guy with a mullet) and an inspiration to the clubhouse and his fans.

Then he got old, got a DUI, beat his wife and “time traveled” (see here). He recently did a book signing at a place called the Chicken Coop. His book is about metaphysics, numerology and chatting with plants and animals. (buy it right here).

Isn’t it great when the people you used to look up to turn out to be total weirdos?

See also: Wikipedia