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Top 5 Love Lessons from the Bachelor (Juan Pablo, Hometown Dates)

February 25, 2014

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photo courtesy of ABC/Guy D’Alema

  1. Dudes: No sleeveless tees over long-sleeved ones (even if they’re attached and it’s supposed to be a “look”). In fact, better yet: No sleeveless tees, period.
  2. If one of the parents of your date asks for either a private dance performance or a private dance lesson from you, quickly but tactfully get your date back by your side to immediately dilute the creepy factor (just as JP did with Andi’s mom).
  3. It’s 2014. You don’t need to ask anyone’s father’s permission to propose marriage. But if you insist on asking for a blessing (or the more confrontational “Would you welcome me into this family?”), then ask both parents, not just the dad. (This applies to any ladies considering proposing as well.)
  4. Renee’s mom said it best: “We can love our pets; but you need to be in love with the [person] you want to be with.” Make sure you don’t just have a “pet,” or that you are the “pet.”
  5. Don’t meet the child of your date unless you’re sure you see a future together. And certainly don’t meet the child of your date the day before you dump them!

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Top 5 Love Lessons from The Bachelor (Juan Pablo, Ep 7)

February 18, 2014

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photo courtesy of ABC/Michael Fullana

  1. If you’re looking for an “intellectual connection” with a potential mate (like Sharleen), don’t go on “The Bachelor.”
  2. If your date makes you wish you were a little dumber (like JP makes Sharleen wish she were), then that is a clear sign this relationship should be kept squarely in the booty call zone — a marriage of intellectual equals just ain’t in the cards. After all, the ideal relationships exist when both parties think the other one is by far the smarter of the two. (By the way, Sharleen, nice subtle dig on the brain capacity of all the other ladies vying for JP’s affections — zing!)
  3. If you’re going to check out someone’s rack, be subtle about it (see Juan Pablo at the very end his date with Sharleen — at minute 26 on TiVo — for what NOT to do).
  4. Calling someone your “boyfriend” doesn’t make it so (Nilki).
  5. If you dump someone, don’t let them make you feel better about it. You can outwardly feel bad about it, but don’t play the hurt victim who needs to be taken care of and told how wonderful you are by the person you just dumped (Chelsea). This is a time to be gentle with their feelings, buoy their spirits with compliments, be self-deprecating about what a jerk you are — don’t let the dumpee take on that role (even though it makes them seem — and probably feel — like a much better person than you). We originally wrote this rule with Chelsea (as the dumpee) in mind, but suppose it could apply to Sharleen (as the dumper) too.

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Top 5 Love Lessons from The Bachelor (Juan Pablo, Ep 6)

February 11, 2014

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screenshot from ABC’s The Bachelor

  1. Everyone has their patented move (e.g. gently curling your date’s hair behind their ear). Just make sure your move doesn’t become an automatic, robotic gesture when a) you’ve run out of things to say, b) you’re not interested in the words coming out of your date’s mouth, and/or c) you’ve taken a paternalistic view of your dates and are treating them like children whose hairdos — indeed whose whole beings! — need to be tamed.
  2. We said it once, we’ll say it again: If you’re going to explicitly lay down ground rules and set up boundaries about the way you date — which we are all for (yay, open and honest communication!) — then you’ve got to follow and respect them consistently. Don’t break the rules when it’s convenient for you. For example: there is NO moral difference (at least from where we’re watching) between getting all hot and heavy in your bathing suits in the ocean and getting all hot and heavy in your bathing suits in a waterfall. Same diff.
  3. If you’re going to dump someone, do it before a major event, like a holiday (Xmas, New Year’s, Valentine’s Day) or a 22nd birthday. Don’t wait until right after, and certainly don’t do it on the day of!
  4. Using the sad story of your abandonment issues (perhaps created by an alcoholic, absentee father, let’s say) as a thinly veiled plea for another date will always backfire.
  5. Don’t steal other people’s partners (or their column ideas: a week and a half after @BachelorTV liked our Tweet about one of our Top 5 Love Lesson columns, they penned their own 5 — count ‘em, five! — tips gleaned from watching called “Love Advice from the Bachelor,” including our tip about being honest about your desires. Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but payment would feel pretty good too).

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Top 5 Love Lessons from The Bachelor (Juan Pablo, Ep 5)

February 4, 2014

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screenshot from ABC’s The Bachelor

  1. Your date being interested in hearing about your career is not “AMAZING!”, it does not make him an extraordinary human being with mystical qualities that make him the perfect guy for you. Asking you about your job and him actually listening to the answer should be the bare minimum for any date. It’s not proof that you should immediately marry him, it’s just the foundation for possibly agreeing to a second date.
  2. Headbands (the kind that go across your forehead) = don’t.
  3. If you’re going to explicitly lay down ground rules and set up boundaries about the way you date — which we are all for (yay, open and honest communication!) — then you’ve got to follow and respect them consistently. Don’t break the rules when it’s convenient for you, while expecting your partners to follow them 24/7 to the letter. And while we’re at it, don’t paternalistically decide what’s best for your date, when you hypocritically turn around and do the opposite: your date is an adult, she can make her own decisions (like deciding when and where and with whom she’s ready to make out).
  4. If you do something on a date willingly and wholeheartedly that you later regret, don’t blame your date. You can gently admit that you think it might not have been a good idea to do whatever you did, that you think it was a mistake on your part, but remember that it takes two to tango: you could have used better judgment in the moment. Don’t make the other person feel like a predator, the lone gunman, a skanky ho, when in fact you couldn’t get your swimsuit on and your tongue out quickly enough.
  5. When you’ve hurt someone’s feelings and they are crying, please don’t tell them to stop crying. Especially not over and over and over again. Even though they may be acting like a child, they are not a child, so don’t talk to them like one (again with the paternalism). You must acknowledge their feelings and accept that this is the way they are expressing themselves. It may not be the way you express yourself, it may not make you feel comfortable, but you’ve made your water bed and now you’ve got to lie in it.

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Top 5 Love Lessons from The Bachelor (Juan Pablo, Ep 4)

January 28, 2014

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photo courtesy of ABC/Christopher Jue

  1. When your date confides in you about their terrible, deadbeat, alcoholic father who abandoned them, do NOT respond with, “Wow, that must have been so difficult for your father.” The appropriate response is, “Wow, that must have been so difficult for your YOU.”
  2. Don’t tell your date what you think they want to hear — be honest about your thoughts, opinions, desires, and doubts (like Opera Singer/Child-Hater Sharleen).
  3. Similarly, desperation and over-enthusiasm will not work in your favor. Be cool, calm, collected and — while we’re at it — cautious and maybe even a little coy (again, like Can-I-Even-Be-Bothered-To-Be-Here Sharleen).
  4. On a date, don’t be a narc and whine about your fellow human beings. Narcs never get the rose. (Ahn-nyoung, Elise.)
  5. If you’re interested in kissing your date, don’t lead with “Do you know what happened earlier? I threw up in my mouth a little, but then I swallowed it.” (Somehow this worked for Claire, but it will NOT work for you.)

Finally, not a tip, but an observation: Kelly the “Dog Lover” should get her own Bachelor spin-off show, maybe an online series doing post-show commentary, because that woman has the best one-liners and zingers of the season. (On Claire making a big deal about eating a little tiny piece of South Korean octopus: “I know she’s swallowed bigger than that”; while doing an impersonation of Claire eating said octopus: “Oh my god, this is the most I’ve eaten in two weeks!”) Seriously, she’s making “The Bachelor” bearable this year.

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Top 5 Love Lessons from The Bachelor (Juan Pablo, Ep 3)

January 21, 2014

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photo courtesy of ABC/Rick Rowell

  1. Date location don’ts: cold and dirty city harbors (that you intend to swim in), sport stadium hot dog kitchens (that you intend to make out in), and bungee-jumping bridges next to busy 8-lane freeways.
  2. If you put just the tip in, it doesn’t count. We’re of course talking about putting just the tip of your shoe into the air off the bungee-jumping platform. (Is this season one big metaphor for date rape or what?)
  3. Makeup is fun and glamorous and, often times, pure magic. But it is NOT a necessity. A relationship in which you cannot let your partner see you “without your face on” is not one built on honesty or openness.
  4. Don’t take dating advice from your mom. Even if she’s dead.
  5. If you are a single dad dating 25 women at the same time, making out with many of them in a single group date, and frolicking around with them in their skimpy bathing suits at a pool party — all on national television — then you probably shouldn’t judge the appropriateness of other adults’ love lives. Homophobia and hypocrisy ain’t sexy.

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Top 5 Love Lessons Learned from The Bachelor: Juan Pablo, Ep 2

January 14, 2014

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photo courtesy of ABC/Todd Wawrychuk

  1. Sensual massage and talk of the dearly departed do not mix.
  2. If someone on a date is pressuring you to do something that you don’t feel comfortable with, that goes against your values, and that you simply don’t want to do, then stand up for yourself and don’t do it! Knowing yourself and your boundaries is way sexier than being a wishy washy weakling. (Bonus tip: If you have a job that requires you to use debate skills — like, we don’t know, say, a trial lawyer? — then there’s no shame in employing some of those skills on a date to make your case. This does NOT, however, mean you should, under any circumstances, roleplay that you are actually doing your job — like, we don’t know, say, a local news reporter? – in the middle of a date in an attempt to be playful, especially if you have not yet mastered the skills of said job.)
  3. Don’t be Drunk Girl from SNL: KNOW YOUR ALCOHOL LIMITS! Always. But especially on a first date.
  4. When you’re going to dump someone, don’t string them along with extended kindness, concern, and sympathy — it will only give them false hope. Be nice and gentle, but get to the point quickly. It’s like taking off a Bandaid: the longer you take to remove yourself fully from the relationship, the more it’s gonna hurt.
  5. If you do something dumb on a first date, don’t dwell on it on the second date. In fact, don’t even bring it up. Forget about it and move on…to the totally normal and not-at-all awkward rose ceremony portion of your second date.

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How to Get Over a Breakup…with Breaking Bad

September 30, 2013

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In honor of the last episode ever of Breaking Bad (sniffle), we’ve reconnoitered our classic “How to Get Over a Breakup” article so Breaking Bad fans the world over can better deal with the loss of their loved one and try to fill the void left behind by the series ending. 

Come here, Baby Blue, and let us give you a big hug. It’s going to be alright. Really. However bad it is, someone else has lived through worse before you — okay, maybe not worse, but nearly as bad (think: The Sopranos, SATC) – and they didn’t lose their job or their marbles in the process. Sure, it might have been touch-and-go at first, but eventually they started watching TV again. Some of them even fell in love with a new show (think: Homeland, House of Cards). It’s the cycle of life! Remember, the end of a relationship with an excellent television show doesn’t make TV unwatchable, it just makes you feel that way for a while — unless, of course, you throw out your Panasonic and cancel your Netflix account. Our patented 8-step process below will keep you out of the john and in the human race.

  1. Numb the pain…for approximately seven days (two weeks max, in extreme circumstances). Everyone needs time to hit the wall. So give yourself permission to talk about nothing but BB at your next cocktail party, debate your friends on Facebook about the merits of the finale, try to convince the few people you know who haven’t watched BB to get on the freaking bus already. Don’t feel guilty for fantasizing about Jessie calling you “Bitch” or Walter White in his tighty-whities. We do, however, insist on you stopping short of trying meth to self-medicate.
  2. Cut the cord. Once you’ve spent a week or two on step 1, do something Walter White was never able to do: let things go and move on. As tempting as it may be to rewatch all 62 episodes to relive a fraction of the excitement you felt the first time around or try to catch hidden meanings you missed before, this is not the time to concern yourself with BB. In fact, as with crystal meth, going cold turkey is often best.
  3. Think negatively about BB, especially if it helps you manage step 2. Avoid looking back on your relationship with blue-colored glasses or beating yourself up about what ingenious subtleties you missed. Read Emily Nussbaum’s party-pooper New Yorker analysis of the finale as many times as you have to to feel better.
  4. Git ‘er done. After you’ve broken down, it’s time to rebuild yourself. You have it in you: start that political blog, dust off your bicycle, take that fiction writing class — after all, think of all the time you’ve wasted not only watching BB, but obsessively reading critics takes on it and posting your own amateur analysis/predictions in various comments sections. Haven’t you always wanted to write the next great teleplay? Never got around to taking that woodworking class because of all the time you wasted Tweeting things like “Can’t figure out which Walter White to be for Halloween: gas mask, pork pie hat, or on the lam”? Do it now!
  5. Give back to the community. Nothing like volunteering at the local rehab clinic to put your heartache in perspective.
  6. Give yourself a “breakover.” Get back at BB by shaving off that goatee, giving up fried chicken, stopping ironically calling all your friends “bitch”….
  7. Go on the rebound. We know you’re not here yet, but don’t underestimate the benefits of distracting yourself with other cinematic flings so that you won’t be tempted to indulge in any late-night re-screenings of the last three episodes of BB. Instead, try just the first episode of a whole slew of highly regarded series. You can go young: House of Cards, Orange Is the New Black, American Horror Story. Or play around with some classics you might have missed: Six Feet Under, Battlestar Galactica, Twin Peaks. You don’t even have to fully commit to another show right now, though by the time you’ve gotten to this step you might feel differently about a palette-cleansing half-hour comedy (i.e. “sorbet show”) like Brooklyn Nine-Nine.
  8. Think positively. This is not the death of quality television. This is the beginning. Say it again: This is the beginning! Now sing it: “I will survive!” Because you will survive. And you will watch again. Hey, maybe you should even turn your television on. Remember, channel surfing is your chance to one day find even better cinematography and even truer character development. BB was just a stepping stone on your way to self-improvement, personal growth, and true happiness with the next great pop culture-phenomenon. Take comfort in the fact that, with every passing day, as the pain subsides, you’re that much closer to your density (chemistry reference intended). We mean, your destiny.

 

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A Round-Up of Thoughtful Spankings Over the Miley Cyrus Spectacle

August 30, 2013

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There’s been a LOT of talk this week over Miley Cyrus’s performance at last week’s VMAs. Here’s some of our favorite analysis:

 

 



The 10 Best and Worst Moments from the 2013 VMAs

August 26, 2013

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photo via MTV.com

THE WORST

1. Lady Gaga’s 26 costume changes into smaller and smaller outfits, ending in a Little Mermaid-inspired seashell/thong number. She’s just fucking with us at this point, right?

2. Miley Cyrus’s self-demotion to porny arm candy during her Blurred Lines “duet” with Robin Thicke (or was it the simulated rimming during “We Can’t Stop?).

3. Kevin Hart’s improvised — and painfully unfunny — stand-up bits, amounting to nothing more than drooling over Lady Gaga’s butt cheeks (twice!) and calling *NSYNC fat and farty.

4. A$AP Rocky’s shameless plug for his new album in the middle of a serious statement about gay rights.

5. Katy Perry’s “ring girls” in string bikinis. Why not subvert the whole macho boxing genre with scantily clad ring boys?

 

THE BEST

1. Lady Gaga’s unitard-clad, average-physiqued backup dancers. She’s just fucking with us at this point, right?

2. Taylor Swift caught on camera saying “Shut the fuck up” while One Direction presented the Best Female Pop Video nominees.

3. Justin Timberlake’s classy & graceful greatest hits medley performance in honor of his Vanguard award (which he accepted with class & grace).

4. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’s Best Social Message Video win for “Same Love.”

5. Can’t believe we’re saying this: Kanye “Jesus” West’s subdued performance of “Blood to the Leaves,” which was simply his black-out silhouette in front of a nature still. Refreshing!

 

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