March/April 2018 Reading List

After quickly completing my January and February reading lists, once again I was on the hunt for some new reads. And so, what naturally follows? Heading to Barnes & Noble to browse through every single fiction aisle and shelf and see what strikes my fancy, naturally. And boy, did I find enough. Armed with a heavy bag of new books, I left the store ready to begin these new reading adventures.

“Bachelor Nation: Inside the World of America’s Favorite Guilty Pleasure” by Amy Kaufman

This nonfiction debut book from L.A. Times writer and self-proclaimed “Bachelor” fan, Amy Kaufman. Kaufman researched and interviewed experts to find out what really goes down in the Bachelor mansion while filming the hit reality franchise, and exploring why we all turn in week to week to watch it all unfold.

As an avid watcher of the franchise (lol could you tell from this blog??) and its fictional counterpart “UnREAL,” I was definitely as intrigued as I read the revelations from Kaufman’s original New York Post excerpt. I was curious, and so: reading list, here we go!

It wasn’t until Lifetime debuted “UnREAL,” that I even truly comprehended that something like “The Bachelor” or other reality shows were so produced. (I always knew they were scripted ala “Kardashians” but the dirty deeds of production? I was completely in the dark like most members of Bachelor Nation.) This book truly opened my eyes to how one of my ultimate guilty pleasures, so from now on (like Becca K’s ex showing up on this recent season? Come on.), in the name of media literacy, I can now comprehend what is actually going on and take the show as it is (a pleasure-filled dramatic television series) with a grain of salt. An interesting look at the psychology of a popular television franchise, how it gets made, and why we continue to enjoy watching such a trainwreck of drama.

“The Recipe Box” by Viola Shipman

The recently released novel explores the life of Sam, a busy sous chef for a hot New York bakery. Her life isn’t going as she planned, so she returns home to her small Michigan town to take inventory of her family’s orchard and pie shop. There, she discovers secrets and memories of her family, one recipe at a time in the heirloom recipe box. The inside cover continues, “As Sam discovers what matters most in her life, she opens her heart to a man she left behind but who now might be the key to her happiness.”

It seems intriguing, with a hint of cheesy romance often found in corny Hallmark romance movies. I’m in.

 

 

“Young Jane Young” by Gabrielle Zevin

The new novel by “The Storied Life of AJ Fikry” author illustrates the world of protagonist Aviva, a former congressional intern who was once the center of a political scandal that now may threaten her own bid for political office years later. The inside summary reads that this novel is a “smart, funny, serious, and moving novel about the myriad of ways in which roles are still circumscribed for women, whether they are young, ambitious interns; mothers attempting to steer their daughters through a male-dominated world; political wives facing an age-old knowledge that fidelity isn’t always honored; or young girls feeling bold about their many choices before they release the gender restrictions all around them.”

Seems interesting, especially as it tackles important issues that women still face everyday. Andddd… to page one we go.

“Hot Mess” by Emily Belden

In this installment of Miranda Reads Cheesy Millennial-Type Novels, Emily Belden’s “Hot Mess” seemed to intrigue me in such a way. The story centers around Allie, a twentysomething who is so infatuated by her love for sought-after, culinary genius Benji, despite storied past struggling with addiction and living an often-reckless lifestyle. When he is offered the job of a lifetime in creating a hot New York restaurant, Allie follows her love and takes a giant leap: investing her life savings in the establishment. What happens when Benji takes off on a relapse, leaving Allie alone with “nothing but a massive withdrawal slip” and an approaching opening day. She is suddenly thrust into the “world of luxury and greed, cutthroat business and sensory delight. Lost in the mess of it all, she can either crumble completely or fight like hell for the life she wants and the love she deserves.”

Seems promising and interesting to say the least, in a typical Millennial-centric novel, but let’s give it a shot.

“Needles and Pearls” by Gil McNeil

I was fascinated by Gil McNeil’s “Needles and Pearls” novel, which focuses on widow Jo, a year after her husband’s death, where she is finally getting used to being a single parent to her sons and her yarn shop is doing quite well to boot. But then, a man from her past arrives as well as a new romance with a local carpenter develops to “make life a whole lot more interesting.” The book tackles if Jo can “cope when things get complicated.”

Hm, tell me more… Guess I better read to find out?

 

 

 

Keep on reading! 💖

Judging This Year’s “Bachelor” Contestants, Part III

Guess what’s back, back again?? That’s right: my (now annual) Bachelor cast commentaries, because it’s my favorite part of the whole series. Have at my sarcasm and snark in all its glory…

First things first, ABC is promoting the hit reality show’s return as “Janu-Arie.” *cue the groans* I mean, are we really surprised? No. Who remembers how Ben H was a “perfect Ben” like a “perfect 10?” *eye roll here*

The Bachelor:

Arie Luyendyk Jr, some six years after his first appearance on the franchise (Emily Maynard’s season of the Bachelorette, 2012), returns to find love after having his heart broken on national television.

When ABC first announced their casting choice, while many had no clue who this older guy was (likely because they didn’t watch early seasons or that he’s not social media active, typically a staple of contestants these days). But, I did. I remember LOVING Emily’s season (and making my mom send me weekly recaps while I was at camp. True story.), and Arie’s buddy slash former Bachelor Sean Lowe.

Back in the day, I didn’t know how to feel about the “kissing bandit” Arie. I did like him and he seemed genuine, however, I was unsure if Emily could look past his occupation as a racer driver given her late fiance’s profession. Evidently, she did, until she couldn’t and chose Jef (with one F) instead, which we all know didn’t last long.

I do applaud ABC’s choice of Arie: getting back to the show’s roots that made it successful,getting away from these new faux-celebrities that the contenders all strive to be after the show ends (ugh.), and not choosing a Bachelor that wouldn’t give them the happy ending they crave for the show (cough cough, Peter.) Ok, rant over.

The Women:

The 27-year-old Oklahoma-based personal stylist seems normal, down-to-earth and sweet.

Ok first, the name “Amber” is like a red flag name for the mean popular blonde cheerleader girl everyone hated in high school (or high school centric movies).

Aside from that, the 29-year-old business owner (which idk if it’s real or “real” like Corinne who worked for Daddy’s business) seems basic. But her answer to “which fictional character would you be:” she said, “Ariel because she’s a beautiful mermaid that can sing and gets to marry Prince Eric, what a stud.” So, so she cares about looks and a handsome guy? Ughhhh. To compare, Ali (from above) said she’d be the empowering Wonder Woman. Ok, so I’m over Amber.

She’s 32! We got an age-appropriate one for Arie! That’s like a Bachelor unicorn! Anyway, the event planner seems normal.

The 25-year-old real estate agent also gives normal answers. Case in point: Her least favorite household chore: “LAUNDRY! Takes me a whole week from washing to folding and putting it all away.” I mean, relatable. *she types, staring at the laundry basket full of clean clothes sitting at the foot of her bed for at least a week.*

Becca K has some big eyes. Wowza. Ok moving on, the 27-year-old publicist really likes Sister Act 2. Not the first one, the sequel. As in she mentioned it twice. How the heck does Sister Act 2 come up twice naturally in conversation??? Legit curious.

Bekah M- NO AGE LISTED ON HER BIO- is a nanny. Ok, circling back: why didn’t she list her age? Like what? How did no one ask her? Or why didn’t she volunteer it when you volunteered to go on a nationally televised dating show? Apparently it’s a storyline for the show? Well, she did say she likes to be the center of attention. Well, huh. She does look SUPER young. Like if you are that young, are you really ready to marry a 36-year-old man?

First off, what type of name is Bibiana? One she says she enjoys popping her pimples. *throwing up in my mouth a little* And she gave this answer to the following question, Would you consider yourself a lover of art? “Yes, Wish I could be art.” WHAT THE HECK DOES THAT MEAN? You wish you could be art? That’s an answer to if you like art? Bibiana, can you please explain? I’m so confused. So, banking her as the crazy girl this season.

Bri looks like a model or pageant girl or something; think Courtney R the model-villain from Ben F’s season. Yuck. Ohhh, she’s a sports reporter AND won an Emmy. Ok, you shut me up. Keep doing your thing.

Meh, normal.

Brittany #2: normal. Also her answer to where she meets guys: “I don’t… jk. The past two I’ve met have been through dating apps and they’re terrible human beings.” Yea, that’s about right, lol.

She looks like a normal human! (I’m sorry, but The Bachelor has a low bar for people that are real humans with jobs, paychecks, health insurance, and real thoughts).

Why does she need to specify she’s a “real estate” executive assistant? Hint: the title is enough, we don’t really need the industry too.

COOL JOB ALERT: “I work for a psychiatry research lab. It’s important experience before getting a Ph.D. in chemical psychology. My career is very important to me.” Good for you, girl, good for you. *applause* And please for the love of all that is good in this world, please don’t quit your job post-show to hawk fit teas and hair vitamins on Instagram, please.

Beauty pageant girl? Wait, she looks like Emily Maynard!!! Ohhhh, how will Arie react to that? Hmmmm. Stay tuned.

Ok, how come legit every girl’s favorite movie is “Crazy Stupid Love????” I mean, I love a rom-com as much as the next girl, but come on, even I have to admit that one is far from an Oscar winner or a film classic.

Oh great, a bloody TV host. Like she’s really honestly here for the right reasons??

She’s the weird girl, remember that. Her best gift she’s received? ” My ex gave me an alligator hand holding an iron heart in a jar! I collect taxidermy so it was sweet to me.” What?!?! Um Arie, back away slowly…

She’s a fitness coach named Krystal? I’m gonna guess she’ll start some fights and cause some drama?

Oh no, what did we do to deserve another blonde Lauren B??? Noo, wasn’t it enough that Ben H picked the first blonde, boring Lauren B on his season? Now, we have to go through this all over again??

Normal, seems nice.

“Recent Masters Graduate,” soooo unemployed? I mean kudos on your degree, but let’s just call it what it is, shall we?

I repeat, there are FOUR Laurens! New record! There’s no way Arie can remember to keep these four straight; good luck Arie. This Lauren is super basic. Wow. Also in response to: How much do you enjoy the theater? She said, “Love it. If I got to see Hamilton, I’d die.” Because “Hamilton” is the only piece of theater out there. (Hey Lauren, need tips? Just check out this blog or my Instagram page and I’ll teach you all about theater.)

How is this pronounced? Is it like Raquel with an M or what? Also, she’s 23. How in the world are you ready to settle down and get married at 23. Like I’m around that age and that is utterly mind boggling, because there’s no way I’m ready to get married at this point in my life? Like really? Ok, rant over.

Meh, average.

30. Orthopedic nurse. Seems strong. Like this contestant.

Another 23-year-old! Is she really ready for marriage? Like seriously? Legit curious. Oh dear god, her favorite book. You guessed it folks, “50 Shades of Grey.” Dear god. This is for national TV, you couldn’t just say a classic or anything that resembles actual literature?

Seems normal, sweet-looking.

The Arkansas native is poised to be this season’s Raven. And I’m ok with that, since Raven was hilarious and so sweet.

Meh, no strong feelings here.

Well, ok I made it through the cast list. PHEW, that’s done! I’m sorry if that was a lot snarkier than in the past, these were my gut first reactions to their photos and bios. And hopefully these women prove me wrong come Janu-Arie (I know, I know. And I’m sorry about that.) 1st when the show returns.

10 “Bachelor” Nation Happily-Ever-Afters That Will Remind You That True Love Does Exist

Who says you can’t find love on camera?

In honor of “The Bachelorette” finale tonight, where #BachelorNation will finally learn the mystery identity of Rachel Lindsey’s fiance, I thought I’d run down the *cutest* moments where “The Bachelor,” “Bachelorette,” and “Bachelor in Paradise” stars actually found love (and said yes) on a reality show (seems crazy, no?).

Trista and Ryan Sutter

The OG Bachelorette and her chosen suitor are still going strong, most recently have celebrated over ten years of marriage and two children together, Max and Blakesley. Talk about Bachelor legends!

My family. My everything. ❤️ #justbecause #fbf

A post shared by Trista Sutter (@tristasutter) on

Jason and Molly Mesnick

While Molly wasn’t the recipient of the Final Rose, she did get a fantasy proposal on ATFR and they’ve lived as a happy family in Seattle with his son from a previous marriage and their daughter together Riley.

💙🏝🛥 #Cabo

A post shared by Molly Mesnick (@mollymesnick) on

A little #TeaParty to start the day😘🙃😉😄

A post shared by Jason Mesnick (@jasonmesnick) on

Ashley and J.P. Rosenbaum

Ashley was first seen on the train wreck that was Brad Womack’s second try as The Bachelor. But luckily for J.P., that didn’t work out for her and next season she was chosen as The Bachelorette where she finally got her happy ending with J.P. Completing their ABC journey with a televised wedding and a baby gender reveal on the Men Tell All, this family of four remains just as cute as when J.P. first greeted his now-wife outside the mansion, this time with little ones Ford and Essie.

Being a mother is the highlight of my every single day. ❤️ Ford & Essie ❤️

A post shared by Ashley Hebert Rosenbaum (@ashleylynnrosenbaum) on

Growing up so damn fast. #FacesofFord #memorialdayweekend

A post shared by J.P. Rosenbaum (@_jprosenbaum) on

Dancing is in her blooooooood! Look at those lines! #💅

A post shared by Ashley Hebert Rosenbaum (@ashleylynnrosenbaum) on

Sean and Catherine Lowe

Perhaps one of *the* best Bachelors in the history of the show, Sean and wife Catherine Giudici continue to be just as adorable as their ABC wedding special, as evidenced on their Instagram pages as a family of three, with cute baby Samuel.

Inseparable.

A post shared by Catherine (Giudici) Lowe (@catherinegiudici) on

If my heart was any fuller, it would burst.

A post shared by Catherine (Giudici) Lowe (@catherinegiudici) on

Mine.

A post shared by Sean Lowe (@seanloweksu) on

Desiree and Chris Siegfried

One of my personal favorite Bachelor couples would have to be Des and Chris. They just seemed so full of love during her season (once you look past all the Brooks drama) and it seems that hasn’t wavered a day, especially after welcoming their son Asher during the Bachelor Baby Boom a year back.

💙 I don't know what I would do without these two. 😍💙

A post shared by Desiree (Hartsock) Siegfried (@desireesiegfried) on

BabyBoss #YouTalkinToMe ?

A post shared by Chris Siegfried (@chrisrsiegfried) on

Kaitlyn Bristowe and Shawn Booth

I rooted for Shawn B from the get-go of the “two Bachelorettes” season! His connection with Kaitlyn just seemed so effortless. #RelationshipGoals While they have yet to tie the knot, the Nashville-based couple are still engaged(hey, the Neil Lane diamond is officially hers by now!), but my gosh, are they so adorable together.

Giving him pointers on how to get through a triathlon. #IronMan #IronDaddy

A post shared by Kaitlyn Bristowe (@kaitlynbristowe) on

I was hoping for Olive Garden but this place was pretty good too. #OG

A post shared by Kaitlyn Bristowe (@kaitlynbristowe) on

Jade and Tanner Tolbert

After a disastrous first season of “Paradise,” that didn’t boast any [real] marriages or relationships to come of the Mexican spinoff, Round 2 had much better luck. From episode one, it was evident there was something between Jade from Chris Soules’ season and Tanner from Kaitlyn’s season. Even without many official dates, these two coupled up pretty quickly, so it was only fitting that their season ended in an engagement. And now, this married couple continues to be just as adorable on social media as they prepare for their daughter’s birth soon.

 

JoJo Fletcher and Jordan Rodgers

During JoJo’s season, we saw her fall hard for the famous football player’s younger brother from night one. While they remain engaged, the couple is still cute and goofy together.

When we've given up on taking a good photo 🤷‍♀️ #howallourselfiesend

A post shared by JoJo Fletcher (@joelle_fletcher) on

Yellowfin tuna and a yellow brick wall #sushi #datenight

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Carly Waddell and Evan Bass

In “Paradise” last year, the singer from Chris Soules’ season unexpectedly found love with the “ED expert” Evan from JoJo’s season. Which, I know, WHAT. Carly went from literally throwing up after their hot pepper first kiss to “boarding the Evan train” once again after a brief trip to a Mexican hospital. We as audience members went from cringing at his failed attempts to woo the two-time Paradise contender. But somehow he did. And, so gosh darn cute together. And in a few weeks time, we’ll see their wedding play out on season four of “Paradise.”

Annnnddd… as of yesterday, Waddell and Bass just announced an exciting addition!

More next-gen Bachelor Nation playdates to come??

 

Rachel Lindsey + Fiance???

Obviously, we don’t know who the attorney accepted a proposal from (well, I have my hunches… And a Bachelor bracket I’d really like to get correct.), but in the meantime doing press, Rachel seems SO in love. Which is great for her, and I’m happy about. (I’ll be even happier if it means my Bachelor bracket is correct, just saying…)

3 More Days!!!! #afterthefinalrose #bachelornation #thebachelorette #whoisjerome

A post shared by Rachel Lindsay (@therachlindsay) on

I love seeing all these happy couples in love. It gives hope that, hey, maybe you can find love on a TV show??

Ravens and Roses: The Optimal Way to Watch This Season of “The Bachelorette”

Many members of #BachelorNation host premier viewing parties every Monday night (complete with roses, fantasy league brackets, and wine, lots of wine.), but one specific viewing party has to be THE best.

NFL players (these guys get paid to slam other people around for sport, mind you) are actually big ole softies. Case in point: The Baltimore Ravens players host a Bachelorette viewing party weekly, as they posted on Facebook.

Here’s the video in its entirety:

While watching the ultimate guilty pleasure reality show first was a joke, these men quickly were captivated by the programming and made watching a weekly thing.

We’d love to be a fly on the wall at their party every week! (Sure beats my bed and takeout for sure!)

[h/t Entertainment Weekly]

Analyzing This Year’s Crop of Bachelorette Contestants…

Because I enjoyed it so much during JoJo’s season, it’s that time of year again!

Once again, this post are my first impressions of the men only, straight from their ABC bio pages, exclusively. (And hopefully, some of these negative bios can prove me wrong next week when the show starts airing. (I DARE YOU.)

Without further ado, Rachel’s men…

OK, I thought this 27-year-old real estate agent seemed nice and friendly (i.e his most embarrassing moment was “when I told my mom I was going on the Bachelorette.”), then I kept reading.

Case in point:

  • Most romantic birthday present: “A threesome.”
  • Do you consider yourself a good cook: “Yes! I used to cook four-course meals in college and charge people. LOL” (So, he talks with ‘LOL,’ all caps??)

Reading very bro. Pass, Rachel, PASS.

Prediction: International.

He was the guy that won (sorry, spoiler) the group date hosted at the Ellen show. Initial reactions, like the Ellen audience, he is clearly attractive, looks-wise. Can his personality live up?

  • Do you consider yourself romantic: “Yes. I like to treat my significant other like a queen.” 😍 😍 😍
  • What is the most outrageous thing he’s done: “Ate a live salamander.” *goes to throw up*

Other than the salamander, WOW. I like this guy!

Well, Alex, you’ve got my vote (because that’s how this works, right?!?)

Prediction: Finale.

He’s done some awesome volunteer work globally! Good for you!

Prediction: See ya later after night 2 or 3.

Was he on the Ellen date too? Can’t recall.

First off, poor guy. He’s an aspiring drummer. Yikes. So, unemployed?

OH MY GOD his favorite flower is a red rose because he’s a “classic gentleman.” *rolling my eyes”

I DON’T LIKE HIM.

Prediction: U.S. travel dates.

So it seems like Blake is the “it” name this time around!

Did he copy his namesake’s answer on the roses thing? PASS.

Seems boring.

Prediction: He won’t go passed L.A.

My god, he looks like a human Ken doll. Little creepy. (Anddddd… he’s a male model. Got it now.)

I’m getting wrong reasons vibes here.

Prediction: Middle of the pack. See you in Paradise.

He looks like a country singer. Other than that, he looks very sweet. I like this guy.

Prediction: Final 5.

First thought: super wide jaw. OK, moving on.

  • Greatest achievement: “Making my parents proud and inspiring my little brother.” *swooning*

A few more adorable answers, and some general WTF moments as well.

Prediction: U.S. travel for sure.

Sad story alert. #MamasBoy *wiping my eyes*

He prefers “a woman who demands to be pursued,” good, because you’re on the right vehicle for that.

Prediction: A few group dates, at least.

He seems super sweet and friendly. Wait, did we meet him on After the Final Rose??? Can’t remember.

  • Ultimate date: “No cell phones, technology, just two people geeking out about life, love, goals, family, friends, music, movies, food, etc.” (That’s sweet.)
  • Greatest achievement: “Being a GREAT big brother. Since my kid sister was born, I have taken pride in not only loving her but teaching her about life.”

Yup, #TeamDeMario.

Prediction: Fantasy suites, baby!

One, “Devil Wears Prada” IS a great movie, points added. Nothing else special.

Prediction: Middle of the pack. He’ll find his best friends amongst his competitors.

Meh, not impressed.

Prediction: He won’t leave L.A.

He WAS on the Ellen date!

Which is perfect because….

  • If you could be someone else for just one day, who would it be: “Ellen DeGeneres because she seems to love what she does and people’s days are brightened when they are around her.”

Prediction: Final 6.

Frat guy, and still loving it. Red flag, Rachel.

Immature and dad jokes. Ughhhhhh.

Prediction: L.A., duuuude.

Weird, he has the same best and worst attributes? Huh.

Prediction: He’ll leave night one.

With that name, he’s gotta be a stripper, a singer, or a model. No ifs, ands, or buts. (Plus, he has a first and last name, when there are no other Jacks.)

What? He’s an attorney? OK, I’m surprised. Then why the two names, dude? BUT, doesn’t he look like old school Nick Viall??? (I can’t unsee it!!)

Prediction: Middle of the pack.

He seems sweet.

Spoke too soon: his ideal girl looks like a model. Anndddd, we’re done with him.

Prediction: U.S. trippin’

Country boy? Yup, called that one.

Meh to his answers.

Prediction: Pack your passport!

He was also on the Ellen date! And asked when it was his turn to kiss Rachel.

WTF his job is “tickle monster.” No joke. WHAT?!?

Don’t like him. Same from the Ellen show date!

Prediction: See ya after a few weeks.

They can bond about their legal passions? Meh.

Prediction: L.A.  dates only.

He’s a wrestler. For some reasons, I’m getting bad vibes.

Prediction: U.S. travels.

Pretty uneventful answer. Meh.

Prediction: Peace out after night one or two.

That is some high hairdo, wow. Getting some James Taylor vibes from JoJo’s season. But his hair is giving Jef vibes from Emily Maynard’s season.

Prediction: Grab your passport.

He looks like the character Lucas on Pretty Little Liars. Creepy.

WTF is an occupation of “whaboom??” Need clarification, please.

Preditction: Middle of the pack.

Looks like every other Bachelorette contestant. Meh, seems normal.

Prediction: Going abroad.

Couldn’t focus on this retired pro b-bballer. Other than he eats paleo. Yikes.

Prediction: Travel dates, maybe.

He seems sweet and nice. What? He thinks being romantic is weak? PASS.

Prediction: U.S. traveling. Then, hola Paradise!

Forgettable vibes here.

Side note: ABC, what type of question is “Gluten?” Could you clarify??

Prediction: See ya in the first night exit limo.

He looks like he knows he’s handsome.

Seems grounded, normal, a few WTF stories. Eh.

(Was he the guy that said they kissed on Ellen??)

Prediction: Oh, he’s going abroad.

Rob looks super plain and forgettable.

Prediction: Byeee after night one or two!

He was the runner-up on the Ellen game show. He seems nice and personable from that appearance and his official headshot.

Prediction: Fantasy suites, at least.

That was fun! What are your thoughts, #BachelorNation? See you next week for viewing parties! Excited for Rachel’s journey (oops, start the drinking game now.) to air.

Judging this year’s “Bachelor” contestants

Since, I enjoyed judging the first impressions of “The Bachelorette” cast last year, it’s time to do it again in time for Nick Viall’s season!

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-5-55-20-pm

Let’s go, first impressions only…

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-21-45-pm Alexis: Looks like a replica of Jade Tolbert from Paradise season 2. But lookalike factor aside, the aspiring dolphin trainer– I’m sorry, what? Is that code for unemployed? She seems average- very outdoorsy.

Prediction: She won’t make it past L.A. days, if past night one at all.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-25-49-pm Angela: Oh my gosh, it’s Britt 2.0! Wow, season of lookalikes, huh?… And she’s a model, sorry I’m getting Daniel flashbacks.

Prediction: Middle of the pack? I don’t see much substance from the girl who’d love to never have to drive anywhere herself again…

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-28-16-pm Astrid: aka a lookalike of Ashley I’s sister Lauren! Oh my gosh, producers what did you do??? Anyway, she’s now the third girl whose spirit animal is a dolphin!! Um, original thought much? She can’t live without “her mom, phone, lashes, yoga and red wine” aka she’s basic.

Prediction: International for sure, because she’s like every white American woman.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-32-24-pm Briana: Nurse– a good stable career. Seems very sweet, like she’ll make BFFs in the house. OH MY GOSH, SHE WOULD BE A DOLPHIN TOO???

Prediction: Final ten at least.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-34-46-pm Brittany: Seems normal. But, how is she the only one to get a “do you like camping” question? Where did that simplistic question come from? Was it Nick’s idea?

Prediction: Meh, middle of the pack.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-36-35-pm Christen: She’s from Oklahoma— does she know Chad??? Could Nick please ask her? Haha that could be a spinoff! Anyway, why did she say “dig it?” Weird. But, did she say “Wild Mustang” to try and be like Jade Tolbert?

Prediction: International dates.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-39-17-pm Corinne: Seems predictable. And did she say she loves Chicago, because that’s where Nick lives? Come on.

Prediction: I’m not quite sure how long she’ll last, because it seems like Nick likes brunettes (Andi, Kaitlyn, Jen…), but maybe she’ll stick around for a few dates in L.A.?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-41-47-pm Danielle L: She seems very basic as well.

Prediction: International dates maybe?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-43-11-pm Danielle M: Well, she’s age appropriate for Nick. Seems original in her responses… SAD STORY ALERT, she lost her fiance, I’m getting Juilia flashbacks– will I need tissues this season?

Prediction: Hometowns or final three? She seems original and deserving of love. #FortheRightReasons

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-46-05-pm Dominique: AND ANOTHER GIRL WHO WOULD BE OLIVIA POPE. Sorry, I’m getting tired of the repetitive, basic answers. Seems friendly though.

Prediction: A few L.A. dates. (cough cough, diversity quotient? I’m looking at you producers…)

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-48-34-pm Elizabeth “Liz”: Is this Jade Tolbert’s bestie/ maid of honor?? Answers so-so, meh. But she looks personable and nice. Looks like Nick’s type…

Prediction: Final three for sure.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-50-34-pm Elizabeth: She types with the “:)” emoji– is she a teenager? Seems super basic. But, WHY would you say your phobias that “would hinder certain dates??” Um, seems like the producers are planning to use those in deciding on dates, huh?

Prediction: International dates?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-53-30-pm Hailey: But, SHE LOOKS LIKE LACE! Unlike Lace, she seems to really be in tune with herself.

Prediction: L.A. dates?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-55-06-pm Ida Marie: Southern or country girl?? Yup, from Texas. Why does she have a tattoo of her dad’s birthday? Odd. Seems super young, like my age.

Prediction: Can’t get past night one.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-56-44-pm Jaimi: She’s catered the Oscars, that’s cool. For a chef, she’s a super picky eater with her diet plan… Seems normal, I’d root for her…

Prediction: A few weeks. See you in Paradise?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-2-58-57-pm Jasmine B: Seems friendly, normal. But, if she’s not willing to pursue a man (Nick), why is she here???

Prediction: First international date?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-00-29-pm Jasmine G: Seems basic. Meh, not impressed.

Prediction: Week two or three?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-01-44-pm Josephine: Poor girl, her bio says unemployed… I would never want it to say that, I’d sooner choose some fake hobby than advertise unemployment…

Prediction: She won’t make it past night one.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-03-36-pm Kristina: Well, she looks like Nick’s type…

Prediction: Final three.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-04-45-pm Lacey: OH GOD, if her limo exit is a pun on Lace from last season…. Anyway, watching Dancing With the Stars– good plug, ABC?

Prediction: U.S. travel date 1 or 2?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-14-12-pm Lauren: Looks Like Lauren B a tad. Seems predictable. AND SHE’D BE A DOLPHIN TOO???

Prediction: Hometowns.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-15-59-pm Michelle: Seems nice, personable. Looks very young.

Prediction: Middle of the pack?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-17-06-pm Olivia: SAD STORY ALERT (her ex was addicted to pills). Meh, kind of forgettable.

Prediction: L.A. dates? U.S. travel date?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-18-47-pm Rachel: Good stable career, age-appropriate. Seems like a Right Reasons girl, but IDK what Nick will think of her…

Prediction: International date 1?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-20-14-pm Raven: Getting a “wrong reasons” vibe from her photo alone…

Prediction: Middle of the pack?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-21-40-pm Sarah: Giving me Lauren H vibes, or is that just due to her being a teacher? Did she just quote “Annie” or did she really move to New York broke??? Sweet disposition.

Prediction: Um, international dates for sure.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-23-50-pm Susannah: Meh, average.

Prediction: International date 1?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-25-06-pm Taylor: One word answers, aka forgettable.

Prediction: Night two?

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-27-57-pm Vanessa: Seems normal. But, yet really interested in the idea of a promise ring…

Prediction: She’ll stay a few weeks in L.A.

screen-shot-2016-12-07-at-3-29-33-pm Whitney: I can’t tell if this pose is leaning more villain/model or really shy to me?? Generic answers.

Prediction: Final three, maybe?

Well, this was way more fun to do with JoJo’s guys. This was boring. Nick’s girls are forgettable. No clear standouts either way… I guess I’ll have to watch more in January for Nick’s redemption shot, and what will likely be a third time to pick out a ring with Neil Lane!

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Is this too judgmental?– Analyzing this year’s crop of Bachelorette contestants

As you may know about me by now, my guilty pleasure (if you can call it “guilty”) is all things reality TV, especially it’s holy grail The BachelorThe Bachelorette.

And recently, ABC has released photos and bios of the 26 men competing for the chance to date (and eventually propose to) this season’s Bachelorette JoJo Fletcher, who many will remember as the second woman Bachelor Ben Higgins said he loved and then promptly dumped to pick her competition, Lauren B.

And since #BachelorNation (me included) pretty much just watched the show to judge contestants and to see the insane drama, I thought I’d start with a post all about my first impressions of the men, straight from their ABC bio pages, exclusively.

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The obligatory group shot! Trying hard to figure out which outfit to judge harder: the santa suit or the guy that decided to steal JoJo’s look– and stand right next to her so they look like twins??

Let’s start analyzing her guys:

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.02.20 PM Alex: 25-year-old U.S. Marine (good, noble career), seems normal, like a good guy.

Prediction: should make it pretty far, but probably will tragically get cut for not getting his fair time, so Chris Harrison will likely ship him out to Mexico for the next installment of Bachelor in Paradise, much like Tanner (1/2 of Janner).

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.02.38 PMAli: 27-year-old bartender (so not a totally stable career), also how do you pronounce his name (is it Ah-lee? or Ali? Is he Prince Ali aka Aladdin??), AND if the first words that follow “I love it when my date” is “dresses sexy,” PLEASE move along– you don’t want a woman who’s firstly intelligent, humorous, sweet, kind, generous, or one of a million better descriptions?

Prediction: there a few solid weeks at least?

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.02.42 PM Brandon: the 28-year-old who listed his career as “hipster.” No joke. Well, he does have that vibe down…

Prediction: First or second night exit limo??

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.02.49 PM Chad: Right off the bat, I’m thinking this guy will be an uber-jerk and trouble. I mean, isn’t the name “Chad” such a red-flag name? Not mention the name of JoJo’s still-into-her ex-boyfriend from Ben’s season. Case in point from his bio, he answered THREE separate questions the exact same: Who do you admire most in the world and why? “Myself in 10 years, alright, alright, alright” and “If you could be someone else for just one day, who would it be and why? “Myself in 10 years, alright, alright, alright.”

Prediction: For some unknown, JoJo will probably keep him around through international dates, you know for ratings. But if he’s bugging me now with a photo, a name and answers to written questions- I’m over him.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.02.55 PM Chase: He just looks like a good guy. Like you can tell the 27-year-old sales rep respects women, is there for the right reasons and is ready to settle down. #TeamChase for the final rose.

Prediction: My ideal Bachelor bracket would probably have him at the end.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.03.01 PM Christian: Seems pretty cookie-cutter. His bucket list answer is sweet, though: ” 1) Build a relationship with Mark Cuban and earn his respect. 2) Take a trip to space to experience the process and snap some epic selfies! 3) Spoil my grandchildren.”

Prediction: He’s probably only there as the “diverse” contestant. Am I close, Bachelor producers?

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.03.07 PM First off, what type of name is “Coley??” And second, odd-shaped head. (Hey, I warned you this is all purely my first impressions!! Raw.) Meh, nothing really sticks out.

Prediction: Middle of the pack? Or third elimination?

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.03.13 PM Derek: Well, he looks like most every past Bachelorette contestant, right?!? Seems average, but one question: who has a deep fear of “fluffy kittens??” Red flag on that one, dude. #TeamDerek please.

Prediction: Should make it pretty far and will likely get eliminated for not having enough time, before being sent by Chris Harrison to meet Ben Higgins’ reject in Paradise in August…

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.03.19 PM Daniel: He looks like a male model or at least a bartender. Please tell me I’m right. –And yes I am. His answers make me take an immediate disliking to him. Case in point: Tattoos? “No, same reason you don’t put stickers on a lambo” AND Are you comfortable wearing swimwear in public? “Very comfortable. Why have a lamb if you park in the garage?” Cocky much, dude? Hard pass on this guy.

Prediction: He’ll make it at least halfway and cause all the drama for being “better looking than the rest,” similar to JJ from Kaitlyn’s season.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.03.26 PM Evan: Oh, his career is—- “Erectile Dysfunction Expert.” Ohhhhkayyyyyy…… How’d he explain on television? Just curious. Remember Kaitlyn’s “Amateur Sex Coach” didn’t advance past night one… Also, he said he’s want to be Trump for the day “to see what the heck is in that guy’s head.” Okay?? And his favorite type of dancing is “booty???” (As if I knew what that really was.) And how is “being in touch with [your] sexual energy” an answer to Are You a Romantic? *backing away slowly*

Prediction: Fifth guy to get the boot?

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.03.32 PM Grant: The firefighter at first glance is definitely physically attractive. Point one to him. His answers are sweet and cute… I mean his greatest achievement in life is “saving a life.” No, duh– he’s a fireman.

Prediction: Again, the diversity guy, but he’ll probably last the longest of all the diverse guys, TBH.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.03.37 PM Jake: He answered Where do you see yourself in five years? with “Married to the Bachelorette with our first child.” JoJo, run away fast! He’s already thinking marriage to YOU before you even meet– huge red flag.

Prediction: Another diversity candidate who probably won’t last long, TBH. (Not that I think diversity is bad, I’m basing my predictions based on the past seasons of the show.)

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.03.43 PM James #1 (fine, F.): Looks like a poor man’s Farmer Chris Soules. Right?? (Might just be the shirt, but I’m not quite sure.) Answers: meh.

Prediction: Middle of the pack?

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.03.49 PM James #2 (I mean, S.): His occupation is literally listed as “Bachelor Superfan!!” Literally. Which is code for unemployed, am I right? Also, JoJo– red flag alert! If he’s a superfan, how do you know he’s not here just for the sake of being here??

Prediction: Night 3 going home.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.03.54 PM James #3 (Oh, Taylor. Why does he get to go by both names?): If he’s not a singer-songwriter with that name… And shocker, of course he is.. And, for the love of God, his favorite flower is a “red rose…” Oh, please be kidding.

Prediction: Will make it the farthest of all the James. Middle of the pack? International Date 1?

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.04.03 PM Jonathan: Eh. Not standing out.

Prediction: Won’t make it out of L.A., if past the first night at all.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.04.08 PM Jordan: The most publicized contender as a former pro football player and the younger brother of a professional NFL’er. (Don’t you dare ask me who. You’re lucky I know quarterback is in football, which is the NFL.) Cutest answer of who he admires: “My grandparents. They broke the mold after their generation. They are the most loving people and best example of love and selflessness.” Bonus point for that.

Prediction: Oh, he’ll go international for those dates, for sure, perhaps even to hometowns…

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.04.12 PM Luke: If he’s not a male model…. Unclear, but he is a war veteran, so how could producers mess with his image? (EASILY. Just ask Jubilee from Ben’s season, which I’m still not over.) But his photo is giving him “villain” status… You know I’m right…

Prediction: Middle of the pack?

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.04.22 PM Nick #1: (Oh, I’m sorry B.): Seriously another one who’s favorite flowers are the “red roses [he’ll] received from the Bachelorette???” Over that.

Prediction: Middle of the pack, absolutely. Boring, so he’ll probably make it through L.A. and make the first U.S. destination?

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.04.28 PMNick #2 (Okay, S.): Reading very college frat boy in this picture to me. Has some sweet answers, and he’s obviously a decent person if he’s an Eagle Scout, but if that, a high school accomplishment, is the greatest achievement to date for a 26-year-old, that might be sad…

Prediction: He’ll make it abroad, but won’t make it to hometowns.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.04.34 PM Peter: Ehhhh…. Note for Peter: saying your greatest achievement is being “promoted at every job” makes you look a little cocky, in my opinion.

Prediction: He’ll at least stay through L.A. weeks.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.04.42 PM Robby: He’s a former competitive swimmer, so he’s unemployed now? But, yea, he definitely has the swimmer vibe, oh that’s just his hair. Seems very sweet, but looks almost too perfect/ too good to be reality?

Prediction: Hometowns at least.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.04.47 PM Sal: Nothing sticks out here. Totally an Average Joe.

Prediction: He can’t get passed night one.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.04.52 PM Vinny: If the first thing I thought of when reading your name is “Jersey Shore,” that’s not good, buddy. Seems like a “bro.” Pass.

Prediction: Leaves on one of the first two nights.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.04.57 PM Wells: First, what type of name is Wells? Is that a real name? Did his parents happen to like wells or they had one at home? I’m more interested in how he got that name… Oh, is it a DJ nickname? If that’s the case: red flag– nicknamed guys never fare well. And how do you not like pizza????

Prediction: Leaves on second or third night.

Screen Shot 2016-05-13 at 3.05.02 PM Lastly, Will: looks very average for a Bachelorette contestant. Answers fine.

Prediction: Middle of the pack?

So, there’s some keepers, some to toss out immediately and some middle-ground guys. What are your thoughts and this season’s crop of contenders? Will JoJo find her dream husband here? Should be an interesting season, you know I’ll be watching.

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