Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Blog Tour and my Bachelorette Recap: Sean Gone

Book Bug

For The Reality Check Blog Tour, Lexie at The Book Bug and I thought it would be fun to dish on The Bachelorette and Emily Maynard's search for love, a husband, and ready-made daddy for Ricki. (Notice that I didn't call her Little Ricki, since I don't want the I Love Lucy theme song stuck in your head all day long . . . oops . . . my bad.)

Three guys remain. This season has been different from the others for a big reason: Emily isn't a free-wheeling, single girl simply out looking for love. She's a single mom looking for a partner. Jason Mesnick is the only other single parent who has been in the lead spot besides Emily.

Emily is drop dead gorgeous and undeniably sweet, but she also has backbone. That girl's a bonafide Steel Magnolia. She also went through a huge public breakup with Bachelor Brad. As a result, she hasn't wasted any time getting rid of the guys who weren't for her or weren't there for the right reasons.

Usually by the time there are three remaining bachelors, there's a clear winner or the threat of a clear winner ("No, no, Jake, not Vienna!"). But in Emily's case she seems to have three great guys, which I think is largely due to the fact that they are guys who realize they're also dealing with the life of a child here, and have been willing to man up.

So off they head to Curacao. (By the way, Curacao is an island off the coast of Venezuela—I had to go to Wikipedia to find out. Didn't you love the colorful Dutch architecture? Somebody send me there on a cruise, please!!)

Sean: Mr. Perfect

Sean is perfect, but that might actually mean his doom. Sean himself doesn't believe he's perfect, but Emily uses that word around him a LOT. He looks like a Greek god, he tosses trees—cabers, technically—and breaks them, for Pete's sake, all while being the perfect Southern gentleman. Perfect.

But perfect doesn't necessarily work for Emily. All you have to do is refer back to Ryan, the guy who thought he was perfect despite having alien crop circles shaved into his beard, to know that, in Emily's mind, perfect is an ideal that is destined for failure.

There are a few other red flags during their magic date, which includes a true-to-Bachelorette-form helicopter ride around the island. First, he confesses that he treated the girls he dated like "buddies," specifically, the girlfriend he had for three years. "I loved her but I wasn't in love with her," he says.

Then he admits he skirted the M-word with said girlfriend for those three years. Three years of her trying to talk marriage, with him constantly changing the subject? Just aim that gun right at your foot and shoot it now, Sean. Because right now it isn't you Emily sees sitting in front of her, it's Brad Womack, Mr. Commitment Phobe himself. A girl who claims she wants babies yesterday doesn't want to hang around for three years to find out if her guy can figure out the difference between "love" and "in love" and whether he's willing to do anything about it once he does.

And then, in an awkward attempt to at least get the L-word out, Sean tells Emily that no one he's dated has ever "measured up" quite like she has. Oh, Sean, Sean, Sean. To his credit, after several false starts, he does manage to tell Emily he's in love with her, but it's a little late in the Bachelorette game at this point, I fear.

Clue from Emily: "You represent everything everyone looks for." 

Jef: Mr. One F

Jef is hip and quirky. Even his name tells you that about him. I'm willing to bet his birth certificate has two Fs. And you've gotta love a guy who can not only make a marionette moon-walk but can get Emily to boot scoot as if she were a kid. She's had to be a grownup ever since she found out she was pregnant at the age of eighteen. Being able to act like a kid on occasion when you have grownup responsibilities is a blessing.

But his youthful looks and crazy joie de vivre make some wonder if he's really responsible and ready to settle down and be a dad—even his brother questioned him on it. But the guy's a college grad and has a successful entrepreneurship. That means he's acted responsibly more than once in his life. He can probably figure out when he's ready to take the next step and settle down with someone he loves.

He's also a "non-practicing" Mormon, which seems to confuse a lot of people. One thing I can tell you that it does mean is that Jef was raised in a culture that promotes marriage commitments over long-term engagements with living arrangements. The conversation he and Emily had in the library in Prague seemed to show that they're on the same page (ha, no pun intended) there. And that might also mean he's more willing to take the marital plunge sooner, if he really is in love with Emily, than either Sean or Arie. And for a woman who's looking for a family for Ricki now, including all those babies, that could be a big plus in her eyes.

Clue from Emily: "It's perfect on paper but also things you can't put on paper."

Ah, Arie: Mr. Start Your Engines

What's not to like about Arie? The guy's handsome and charming, and he's an Indy car driver (as opposed to NASCAR), something Emily understands and relates to without it being the same as Ricki's dad. Plus, Emily and Arie have enough chemistry to blow an 8th Grade science lab to smithereens—AND he protects her from all those pesky dolphins swimming in the sea. Emily loves his protectiveness—almost as much as she loves his kissing.

But it's difficult for Emily to get to know a guy when his lips are busy not talking. She tells him she doesn't even know what he does on an average Tuesday morning. Of course, finding out Arie avoids living the sad bachelor life (when he's not on the road, racing) by sleeping in, heading for the shop, then eating and hanging out with friends may not be what Emily was hoping to hear. This Steel Magnolia gets up before six-thirty after all, y'all. It may not cost Arie the checkered flag at the finish line, but it at least earns him a cautionary yellow.

Emily also understands that chemistry has clouded her mind—and opts not to even offer Arie the fantasy suite card. It's just too, too much temptation. Hooray, Emily! Attagirl! All the moms of daughters across America salute you and simultaneously feel your pain.

Clue from Emily: "He's so good-looking. **Sigh** That's a problem. I wish I could just enjoy Arie." 

And then, suddenly—after nearly two hours, that is—it's rose ceremony time. Each guy has strengths Emily is looking for. Sean is handsome and strong, a real go-to gentleman. Jef is edgy and playful, yet somehow manages to stay down to earth. Arie is all smoldering romance. Emily has strong feelings for each man and realizes tearfully that she's going to be blindsiding and hurting someone. She can barely watch the videos the guys have made for her. She breaks down several times before going out to face them.

In the end, Sean is the one who doesn't receive a rose. And again he's absolutely perfect. He takes the news stoically, expresses his hurt without being spiteful, and doesn't break down in the limo. Ah, Sean, there are only about a million women in your home state of Texas alone who would be happy to  give you the time you need to get those tricky words out. Just don't lead the girl on for three years if you're really not feeling it. Promise me.

And then there were two.

The Bachelor/ette Historical Firsts:

First: There has never been a Bachelor/ette who has opted out of all three fantasy suite dates until Emily. (I am giving her credit for all three, even though Jef turned her down first, since she said she was going to turn him down in her ITM.)

First: Jef is the first guy ever to voluntarily turn down the fantasy suite card, although a few guys have played the gentleman and deferred to the bachelorette to make the call. (And for those LDS readers, did you catch his scriptural reference from the Book of Alma? The world could do with a few more bridled passions, frankly.) I only remember one woman ever turning down the fantasy suite card. The Bachelor "respected" her decision—and then sent her home at the next rose ceremony.

Another First: This is the first time I think I've heard or seen anyone on the show say this particular phrase, and I think it says a lot about Emily. Here is a quote from her blog on People.com this week (emphasis mine):

"I say it every week, but this was definitely the hardest rose ceremony yet. I went back and forth so many times, but I reminded myself that I couldn't make a mistake as long as I prayed about it and followed my heart." 

I hope, for Emily and Ricki's sake, her prayers are answered.

Next Monday is The Men Tell All, and I'll be blogging about it the following Wednesday. The finale and a live After The Final Rose will air on Sunday night July 22nd, instead of Monday night, as it's been in the past. Will you be watching? Add your comments (including your email address) below to be entered into our drawing for the grand prize (a copy of my novel Reality Check and a gorgeous charm bracelet)! And be sure to check The Book Bug for the other blogs participating in the tour so you can have as many chances of winning as possible.

Also, check out my other contest on the blog Lyrics Without the Chord Changes. I want to know where you had your Reality Check

And for more reality TV and romance fun, get yourself a copy of my novel Reality Check!



  1. I think Arie is a little too schmoozy and also he's gone A LOT. Does Emily really want to marry a guy who's on the road and used to living the crazy bachelor life all the time? Jef seems super sweet and fun. I think he has a better picture of what it's like to settle down and be a family. That being said, Emily is crazy about Arie and I think she might be too clouded by all the kissing. If it was just her I bet she'd choose Arie hands down. Cheese4mel@yahoo.com

  2. Fantastic post Karen! I love your take (and clever wit and humor. You must be a writer or something!) I was so sad to see Sean go. I LOVE SEAN!! However, I would absolutely LOVE to see him as the next Bachelor (if Roberto turns them down). Though I have to admit I would have been sad to see any of them go. Emily has done a great job in picking great guys. I've never liked all 3 at the end before. She's a lucky girl with a very hard decision to make.

  3. I am really enjoying this season of the Bachelorette. I love how much Emily makes references to prayer. She is so sweet and classy. I love that she turned down all the fantasy suites, and that Jef turnd her down first! Haha. I want Jef to win so badly! He is so sweet, and I loved the marionette sequence. He's very romantic. That note he wrote to Ricki was adorable. I liked Sean, but I knew he was going home after that last date. And her relationship with Arie is purely physical. All they do is kiss. They hardly talk about anything important.

    Anyway, I'd love to win Reality Check! Thanks for participating in such a fun blog tour!

    - Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl
    Jana Sparkles {at} yahoo {dot} com

  4. Interesting....this is my first time actually following the Bachelorette..

    I'd love to win Reality Check!

  5. This is the first season of the Bachelorette that I actually liked all of the last three. But I'm leaning toward Team Jef lol:)) But they are all so awesome. I am SO glad that Emily saw through Ryan and Chris and Doug.
    I would love to win a copy of Reality Check:) Thank you so much for the chance to win!

  6. Holy cow, this makes me want to watch this! What a breath of fresh air to hear they're all abstaining. Good luck, Emily!

    Thanks for the chance to win, I'd love to win Reality Check.


  7. hmmmmmm that is difficult for Emily to get to know a guy when his lips are busy not talking and then she tells that she doesn't even know what he does on the morning....

  8. Thanks a lot for the nice info its really awesome and great,..