Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Why I'm Loyal to The Bachelor


Today I avoided Facebook like the plague and it had nothing to do with Lent. I got a text from my friend Heather and didn't open it for hours because I was afraid it was a spoiler. (Sorry, Heather!) Honest to goodness, I was slightly terrified to go to the network website and watch what I missed last night because I had a feeling "she" would be splashed all over the place. So I went to Hulu, instead. (Love you forever, Hulu.)

I love the Bachelor franchise. I love every minute of every episode. (Except for the minutes when there's kissing because that's just extremely uncomfortable and I think you all agree.) Fate works against me in the form of a defunct TV antenna and I have to watch it the day after it airs, but I always watch it.

I love Chris Harrison and I love that he can say the same exact lines every. single. season with a straight face. I love the dresses and the helicopters and at least some of the drama. I love it when a girl lights the room and I watch through my hands when she cries her eyes out in the limo.

If this sounds like a confession, it is one.

It's so popular to denounce The Bachelor as the irrefutable source of all that is regrettable about modern society. It's fake. It's staged. Everyone is there for the wrong reasons. The guys are all cads. The girls all want their own cable talk shows. I get it. We want to believe that our own stories are the gold standard and everything different is a sham. The way we did things was best, even though come on, we did plenty wrong, right?

All I know is, I believe in love.

All day long, every dang time.

I believe it almost never happens on a reality show, but I also believe that it can. 

I believe that much of the show is staged, but I believe you can't manufacture the spark that lights up the eyes of the falling-in-love.

I believe in your love story and in Kelly Ripa's and yes, I believe in the great love of Jennifer Lopez, whoever he may be.

I believe love can find us in Psych 101 or at the mall or online or in front of a camera crew.

Why not?

I dare to believe that the final final rose means something. I choose possibility over cynicism.

True, they usually don't last and they sure don't last long.
I'm always sort of sad.
Even with Jake and Vienna, I'm sorry to say.

But while they're there, I'm rooting for them to move away, pull the plug and do what the rest of us do - struggle and laugh and kiss through the fun and boring and hard parts of life. It's totally worth trying.

So today I had 90 minutes while Silas was in school and I watched the finale while I washed dishes, cleaned my kitchen and bathroom and folded laundry. It made me inexplicably happy. I caught myself smiling at the screen.

Haters, go on ahead and hate, but this season there was some icing on the cake and it went like this, "I stayed in a constant state of prayer.... I was begging God for direction.... God always speaks in due time... I knew that you were the one God had for me."

I mean, ABC? I'm way impressed. Thank you for not editing all of that out and I'm totally curious about what you did edit out, because you left in the part where his teary-eyed dad told the girl, "We have been praying since the day he was born for his future wife" and that's something big.

Call me naive or unholy, but I plan to keep watching and I don't care who knows it.

I'm the opposite of trending.
The antonym of cool.
The gig is up.

ps - I don't like coffee, beer, or sushi. This seemed like the appropriate time and place to share.