Friday, June 28, 2013

It's Name Change Friday!

HI-YO!  Let us return, as we must, to the rolls of those seeking to rebrand themselves with shiny new monikers.

First up we have one I like to call DOUBLE TROUBLE.

CASE NUMBER: CNC-13-549553
TO ALL INTERESTED PERSONS: 1. Petitioner: Amber R. Tyler filed a petition with this court for a decree changing names as follows: Present name: a. Tyler Audriana Dempsey to Proposed name: Tyler Audriana Tyler

Uh-oh.  Here we have a situation where obviously things didn't work out with Mr. or Ms. Dempsey and so we're apparently giving young Tyler our last name which, unfortunately, is also Tyler. Tyler Tyler, welcome to a world of confusion.  Unless, of course, we're calling you "Audriana" (lovely, BTW), in which case Audriana Tyler sounds great and carry on then.


Case No. CIV521327 Superior Court of California, County of San Mateo
Petition of: Rich Shapero for Change of Name
TO ALL INTERESTED PERSONS: Petitioner Rich Shapero filed a petition with this court for a decree changing names as follows:
Richard Wallace Shapero to Rich Shapero
Ransom Saltmarch to Rich Shapero
Richard Shapero to Rich Shapero
Richard W. Shapero to Rich Shapero

Apparently not content to change his own name, Rich Shapero wants to change EVERYBODY'S NAME!  ONE DAY SOON WE WILL ALL BE RICH SHAPERO. RESISTANCE IS FUTILE.

No, I'm just kidding, you guys.  Obviously Rich has been using a bunch of variations and wants to clean house.  So Richard W. and all its permutations will be just plain Rich.  Let's see, we've got Richard Wallace Shapero, fine, got that, Ransom Saltmarch, OK, fair enough. Richard Shapero, sure -

HOLD ON WAIT A SECOND.  Where did YOU come from, Ransom Saltmarch, besides probably a Thomas Pynchon novel?  How did you get mixed up with the Many Richard Shaperos?  Perhaps Rich has a secret life as the dashing Ransom Saltmarch, raising an eyebrow at you from the end of the bar as he lifts a perfectly made martini to his moustachioed lips.  "Surprised to find you here, Saltmarch," you'll say, joining him.  "Really?  I shouldn't think so," Ransom replies.  "Anyway, I was just leaving.  Here, let me get your drink.  Oh, all I have is baht.  Next time, perhaps."  Ransom puts on an exquisite overcoat and leaves, getting into an X-Type parked right in front of the entrance.  You crane your neck to watch but he's already gone.  Ransom Saltmarch.

Have a great weekend, everybody.  Especially you, Ransom.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

The Bachelorette: I guess being a total asshole really does work

I suppose it's ironic or something that the Supreme Court is going to decide about the gays getting married tomorrow and here we are watching the single best argument for abolishing the institution of marriage.  Enough serious stuff!  Let's get to Germany and see if I can make it through this without doing a Nazi joke.  It's gonna be close!

We are in Munich.  Des has never been to Europe!  She starts out on a Solo Date with Chris who still looks like the Shins' James Mercer and knows how to say a thing in German!  I'm not sure what it was.  We're barely underway when ZOOP back to the hotel where Bryden, the Most Emo War Vet Ever, is feeling sad like a raincloud.  "Feelings aren't progressing the way they need to be," he mopes, listening to Dashboard Confessional on his brightly colored earbuds.  Later he will post a GIF of a sad puppy on his Tumblr.  Anyway, he's decided to go home and instead of just, you know, GOING HOME, he decides to stalk Chris and Des and ruin their day too, so to find them he goes up to random Germans and asks them if they've seen TV cameras, you know, other than the ones behind me.  FINALLY HE SPOTS THEM.

If you were Iraqis, you'd be dead by now, Chris and Des!  Anyway, he tells her he's taking off and, like the rest of us (and ABC for that matter) she wants to know why the fuck he flew from California to Germany just to turn around and leave.  Whatever dude.

Night finds us at Residenz, which is not the dance club at Sandals Negril, but is apparently some palace thing (and is administered by the charmingly named Bavarian Palace Department) that also hosts vapid Americans for candlelight dinners.  D bitches about how cold her ex was like Chris is her BFF or something.  "Girl, I know," Chris says. "Boys are the WORST."  Oh God, no, here comes some more of his awful, awful poetry.  This time it's AA BB CC couplets, which is even more 5th grade than his previous efforts.  "While I sit and look at you / I know that what I feel is true / Despite my lack of personality / Thanks for taking me to Germany."  Then she gives him a rose and there's some guy playing emo piano music and it's a shame Bryden's not here so he could cry and cry and put this guy on his Pinterest.

Group Date on Mt. Douchenkanzer.  There's a Yodeling Guy and all the jerks yodel and that's supposedly "embracing the culture" but it seems more like the Fisherman's Wharf of Germany.  There's a sledding thing.  Oh, Des says "It's been such a great day!  It brings me back to my childhood."  Like when they had to live outside and eat snow for dinner!  After some other boring shit, Human Skull appears with two glasses of yellow fluid and a strange tale.  Ten years ago, it seems, Human Skull "was here and made a big life decision."  Turns out he was traveling around Europe after graduation and I think decided not to be a priest?  Well, on behalf of your would-be parishoners, THANK YOU FOR THAT, HUMAN SKULL.  Last thing we need is you grinning maniacally through the confessional.  "THAT'LL BE SEVENTY MILLION HAIL MARYS HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!"

Then there's the Cage Match Date with Michael the Asshole and Ben.  MTA is committed to getting up in Ben's grille and calling him out and whatever and usually this ends badly for the caller-outer but LET'S SEE DUN DUN DUN. Oddly, they will spend the first portion of this date in a floating hot tub type contrivance that also is a boat and I guess the Sky Mall catalog actually sells something once in a while.  Asshole is getting all confrontational about Ben being an absent father and it's a good thing Bryden isn't here because his tears would fill and sink the Hot Tub Boat.  Then there's a supes awkward log cabin dinner and Asshole wants to know why Ben hasn't made more friends like this is fucking summer camp or Semester at Sea and also why he didn't go to church on Easter and what a fucking tool this prick is.  Anyway, blah blah blah, amazingly enough, Des keeps Asshole and boots Ben who, admittedly does seem hella shady but come on, you can't reward asshole behavior.

In a disturbing postscript, we see Ben in a limo where he says - honest to God - "You guys really missed out. The single dad from Texas. Hi Hollywood!"  These are the rantings of a deranged man.  "Where are we getting drunk? Let's have some fun tonight," he says.  FINALLY SOMEBODY GETS IT.

Oh, I guess I have to mention one other subplot that frankly I couldn't give a shit about but it seems somebody overheard 1920's Wanted Poster James bragging about how being on the show will get him mad tail back in Chicago.  NO FUCKING SHIT.  That's not a bug, it's a feature.  Anyway, a couple of these nimrods can't wait to run to Mommy and tell her what the bad man said but since we're skipping the cocktail party they don't get a chance yet.  Who fucking cares.  Let's give out the roses.  Juan Pablo gets one because Juan Pablo.  Wait, what did he say when he accepted it?  "Con Frito"?  Everybody loves Fritos.  MIKEY gets the boot.  We all continue to suffer. 

Friday, June 21, 2013

Muni bus plows into Yeezus and the Christian Post or something

SO MUCH TODAY. Well, some.  I don't know about "so much."  Never mind.

FIRST: Muni passenger stops out of control bus!

Seriously, watch the video in that link.  It's got it all.  Muni!  A hero passenger named Frank Primus!  Bicyclists jumping out of the way! A girl with vocal fry saying she was scared out of her mind! How this was not the most Twittered about event in the history of SF, I don't know.  Because it didn't happen in the Mission, I guess?

SF Appeal says the bus hit an illegally U-Turning car. GOOD. 

SECOND: The #1 album in the country today is by Black Sabbath.  Just let that sink in for a second. [UPDATE: You know what just occurred to me?  It's probably the #1 album because Black Sabbath fans are the only people old enough to go to a store and buy a physical CD. Fuck, they might even buy vinyl without realizing it's hipster to buy vinyl.  They buy vinyl because they still have the record player they had in 1977.]

THIRD: Next week's #1 album will surely be Kanye's "Yeezus."  Sure, any dorky white guy at Pitchfork can give Yeezus a 9.5 (and I apologize in advance if Ryan Dombal, who "creates GIFs for Pitchfork's Tumblr" and "lives in Fort Greene, Brooklyn," isn't a white guy, although come the fuck on), but what we want to know is what the Christian Post thinks!

ANSWER: Not bad

Yeezus never lacks passion or direction which is an aspect of the album that can be respected. It certainly is a cohesive work at just 10 tracks clocking in at around 40mins. It is also the first of Kanye's albums to feature more than one beat from a producer other than himself. Daft Punk, a group Kanye once sampled for crafting hit records such as 'Stronger' is behind the boards for the first three songs on Yeezus. The electro pop dance group energizes the rapper bringing out a side of him that was missing from MBDTF.

That's actually not a bad take on it, Christian Post!  Color me surprised!
 There are a few blasphemous lines here and there, but the self proclaimed man of God sticks to his usual dabbling in Christianity mentality recognizing that Jesus is still the Most High while spitting some of his most over-sexed lyrics to date throughout the rest of the project. He functions as an unashamed walking contradiction which is something he has been for most of his career.

OK then, Christian Post!  If you're willing to let a "few blasphemous lines here and there" slide, I guess it's cool.

(BTW, Christian Post isn't kidding about over-sexed lyrics. Don't know if Christian Post was specifically thinking of "Put my fist in her like a civil rights sign" or not, but maybe!)

Anyway, I'm not sure how I feel about this album, but I can't stop listening to it. It's actually kind of brilliant, I think.


Napa, you sly dog.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Bachelorette: It's a disaster! No, really.

So after Chris Harrison patiently explains the rules AGAIN to the remaining, and clearly puzzled, idiots, we're off to Atlantic City which was kind of a fucking dump when I went there like 20 years ago but maybe they've cleaned shit up or whatnot.  We're kicking off with a Solo Date with Brad, the one with the shameful secret child MADDOX and the fun-lovin ex.  Brad is as bland and featureless as a field of gently waving wheat but Dez tries to kick him into high gear with her k-razy hijinx like some rides on the boardwalk and invading a chocolate production facility and plucking food off the fucking line like Jesus where is the fucking health inspector and now some of you may be pulling long Desiree hair from your chocopretzels or whatever. 

For dinner we decamp to some lighthouse thing where Brad mumbles quietly about nothing until some stimuli triggers a rudimentary memory of the events earlier that day.  "I keep thinking about our..." he begins.  USE YOUR WORDS BRAD. OUR WHAT? But the best he can do is a "whoosh" sound and a hand gesture. I think he's talking about some ride they went on.  Our maybe the time he took an airplane up into the sky.

Perhaps sensing that spending any more time with Brad would be like teaching Mandarin to a pug, Des wisely ditches him and he cries and gets in a cab.  "I don't think she rejected me," he says. I don't think Brad knows what "rejected" means.

The Group Date thing was just painful and I'm not going to go into a lot of details but essentially it featured a bunch of them competing in some faux beauty pageant.  This sorry affair was only redeemed by the presence of "world famous pageant coach Mr. Christopher Dean" who was there purely to turn the FABULOUS up to 1000 but can do little to help out.  Somehow they drugged/paid a number of hapless citizens to attend this shit tornado.  It's all about as awful as it sounds WAIT DID JUAN PABLO JUST SAY HE HAD A DAUGHTER? Did we know that already? Is there any contestant who doesn't have kids? What the fuck? Somebody "won," I guess.  I was kinda zoned out at this point.

Post, yet another pool party.  The guy who looks like James Mercer from the Shins writes poetry! Look, he's reading a poem! It's from the roses-are-red school of ABAB rhyme scheme poetry like you'd expect. Later, Drilling Fluid Engineer busts out the guitar to bore Des with a song that is a cross between "She Talks to Angels" by the Black Crowes and a My Feelings Mad Libs. At least he doesn't appear to be hopped up on the amphetamines and grinning like a Human Skull like he usually is.

Solo date with 1920's Wanted Poster James. Oh Jesus, they're off to survey the damage done by Hurricane Sandy.  The first helicopter ride of the season is kind of a drag, I have to tell you.  Off we go over the destroyed homes and stuff.  THINK OF ALL THE NEW JERSEYANS WHO CAN'T GET BODY PIERCED NOW.

The Bummercopter lands in Seaside Heights where we meet an oddly accented older couple who lived through the hurricane and tour their gutted home.  YOU'RE THE ONLY ONE WHO CAN SAVE US NOW BACHELORETTE.  Instead of fixing their house, Dez dipatches them to dinner at the House of Blues in Atlantic City.  James' heart is broken and also he would like some spaghetti.  Oh good, now we have to follow the Olds on their date.  They actually have way more personality than anyone on this show.  Back at spaghetti, James has a dark secret to confess!  He did something terrible once!  Holy shit, what is it gonna be? Wait, what? You CHEATED ON YOUR GIRLFRIEND FRESHMAN YEAR OF COLLEGE?  Really?  Who didn't?  That's the best you can do?  Wait a minute, you were with her for 5 years before college?  I think your secret is "I had sex with a 14-year-old girl."  There, fixed it for you.

James and Des are reunited with the Olds, who now have one more trial to endure - a solo show by Darius Rucker.  The Olds look panicked but will make it through this together.  Oh, Darius Rucker got coke-skinny at some point!  He plays some "music" and whatever.

Pre Rose Ceremony party.  That doofus Michael has some kind of manual PowerPoint presentation with scraps of paper and a Sharpie.  There's some issue with Bryden but I couldn't really follow.  He wants to get off the show?  He's not sure Des is here for the right reasons?  I don't really know.  Nobody cares.  Go, leave if you want to.

Oh fuck only one getting the boot tonight.  Comes down to MIKEY and Some Guy and duh since MIKEY is obviously a Drama Source you know he's not going anywhere so hasta la vista, Some Guy.  He's shocked and doesn't know how this happened.  You should watch the show sometime. It'll help you decode this awful mystery.

NEXT WEEK D tells us we are going where "the men wear lederhosen."  OH GOOD WE'RE GOING TO THE IT'S A SMALL WORLD RIDE AT DISNEYLAND. Oh, we're going to Munich. OK then.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Let's all get in on the Gentrification Article Pool

Articles/Think Pieces/Blog Posts/Scrawled Ravings about How Tech Shitheads Are Ruining San Francisco Forever are the new hotness, no doubt!

It's just a matter of time before the next one appears, makes everyone super angry, spawns a 100-comment stream, and then recedes into memory. I thought I'd crowdsource when and where it's going to go down!


The Next Gentrification Piece is going to appear in:

[1] Bold Italic
[2] Mission Local
[3] Bay Guardian
[4] That hippie expo paper thing next to the Bay Guardian in the newsrack

The author used to live in

[1] an "apartment in the Mission that rented for $300"
[2] a "performance community in China Basin"
[3] an "artist's cottage on the slope of Telegraph Hill"
[4] Evanston, Illinois

Someone just Ellis Acted the author's neighbor, a

[1] Kindly grandmother and her parrots
[2] Hardworking immigrant and his four kids
[3] Radical queer arts collective
[4] Guy who rented his place for $250 a night on Airbnb

This neighborhood used to be a real community until it was ruined by

[1] $48 fried chicken
[2] $50 haircuts
[3] Google glass
[4] Apps
[5] Fleece vests

You can tell the new residents don't respect the community because they

[1] Work on computers
[2] Buy expensive produce
[3] Don't speak Spanish
[4] Moved in after the author did

We are losing the things that made San Francisco special, like

[1] Spoken word/bondage caf├ęs
[2] Marginally employed recent college graduate potheads
[3] Abandoned warehouses
[4] The capacity to be free of rage

That's it; the author is giving up and moving

[1] To Oakland
[2] To Bozeman, Montana
[3] To LA
[4] Back to his/her parents' place in Evanston, Illinois

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

You guys, I have some Game of Thrones questions

So we just watched the Season Finale last night and I gotta tell you I watched the whole series starting in January and I'm still not sure what the fuck is going on.  I mean, I think I have the broad plot strokes (but maybe not) but half the time I have no idea who the people on the screen are or why they're doing what they're doing.  Maybe you can help clear some stuff up for me.


1. The big ice wall thing, who built that?  How long ago?  And is it just to keep the ice zombies out? 

2. Why did that one guy cut off that other guy's dick and send it to that third guy in a box?

3. Why did the Head Lannister make the midget marry that young chick?

4. Roughly speaking, how many different guys are fighting to be in charge right now?  Is the Blonde Dragon Chick trying to get in on that and take over everything too?

5. Why is the young disabled kid kind of wandering around aimlessly with the kid from "Love Actually" and the retarded giant?  What's the point?

Thanks.  I'll take my answers off the air.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The Bachelorette: Finger of Blame

This week, we're going to kick off with a Group Date featuring a selection of idiots getting matched up against the National Dodgeball League All-Stars, I guess, who have the steely-eyed glare of Navy SEALS although they're wearing ballerina tights and playing a game most people quit pre-puberty.  These roided-out Dodgeballers try to excise the pain and humiliation they felt as children by whipping balls at the hapless contestants until Chris Harrison mercifully steps in and stops the madness and divides the monkey-brained males into two dodgeball teams for some good old-fashioned dodgeball in a cage off the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica.  The winners will, presumably, get something like more time with Des or something.  This is as boring as it sounds until the third and final game when BOOM Brooks goes down with a broken finger.  He is led away and put down, hopefully.  Oh no, wait.  We have hospital footage.  Brooks is in the Finger ICU apparently.  There is a team of doctors surrounding him. Brooks may not make it.

Go to the light, Brooks.  Let go of the pain.  You were too good for this world.

Cut to the Intercontinental Century City for the Dodgeball Victors Party.  Sadly, Brooks' finger death has cast a pall over the proceedings.  But Brad has the resolve to soldier on.  He has, it seems, a secret from his past that "has really haunted him."  IF IT'S JUST YOUR DAD LEAVING YOU, BRAD, WE'VE HEARD IT.  YAWN CITY.  No, wait, he has a three-year-old named "Maddox."  Why would that haunt you?  Is Maddox a ghost?  Not an actual three-year-old?  Is it a plastic baby dressed up to look like the Pitt-Jolie Maddox?  That would be haunting.  Wait, there's more.  Maddox's Mommy likes the booze and Brad didn't like that.  Why you gotta be stepping on her good time, Brad?  It's always Unhappy Hour around Brad.

Wait, is that James Mercer from the Shins? What's he doing on this show?

He whisks D. away to the rooftop helipad.  He was "glad to see her in her own skin today."  Not like the women he keeps in the basement at home!

HERE COMES BROOKS.  He has made it.  He will live, as it turns out.  He gets some makeout time for this, but the Shins' James Mercer gets the rose.  Then they get treated to a private concert by a dead-eyed chanteuse named Kate Earl or something, who slurs her way through a few horrible proto-songs while they dance listlessly, lulled into a near-hypnotic state by her monotone mumbling.

INT. BACHELORETTE HOUSE. THE NEXT DAY. Des is writing in a journal or something when the phone rings and WOULD YOU BELIEVE IT it's Chris Harrison.  He has some "bizarre news" and you better get over to the Monkey House pronto.  We learn that there's apparently a guy on this show named Brian or something who has a girlfriend named Stephanie and WHOOPS HERE SHE COMES and Brian forgot to break up with her apparently.  Stephanie seems a little shrill and has the overall mien of a Marina Girl who's been told they lost her reservation at Tipsy Pig.  Anyway, Brian or whoever the fuck he is is swiftly escorted out by the crew and the whole thing is so distressing it makes BRANDON cry.  Brandon is a fucking basket case who really should not have been cleared by the psych staff to be on this show.

Anyway, the whole thing just ruins the Solo Date with Kasey that day.  There's some kind of hanging on ropes on the side of a building and then rooftop windy pool situation, who cares.  Hey, what is up with the name "Kasey" with a "K"?  At some point in the late 80's was there some famous person named Kasey with a K that I missed?

Group Date slash Lone Ranger movie embedded advertising.  One of these stupid let's-do-movie-stunts things they do almost every season, sprinkled with advertising for the Armie Hammer-Johnny Depp BLOCKBUSTER that's coming this summer.  I'm sure it'll make a bazillion dollars or whatever, but really, Gore Verbinski, doing a tie-in with the Bachelorette reeks of desperation.  This is the territory of third-string J Anniston romantic comedies, not epic thrill-bores.  Anyway, Joan Pablo wins whatever kind of contest they're running here which is no surprise because he is JUAN PABLO and has a Spanish accent and is a former professional soccer player.  I bet JUAN PABLO is on this show because he has now had sex with every single woman in America and needs something else to do with his time.  They watch a screening of the movie with "the popcorns" and FUCKING TALK THROUGH THE WHOLE THING.

That night, by the campfire, Drilling Fluid Engineer must have tripled up on the Adderall because he is tweaked out of his skull and is licking his lips like a monitor lizard.  He begins hopping from rock to rock making guttural, screeching noises.  His brain is a fever storm of electrical activity.  Meanwhile, James' dad has a "cancer spot" and he wants to make sure Des is here for the right reasons!  WHOA MAN!  THAT'S NOT HOW WE DO!

Cut to the following day where we're having some kind of pool party for some reason and Ben goes off alone with her for a minute because he's a contestant on a dating show and is trying to advance his position on the show but this unaccountably makes the grown man named MIKEY enraged again.  MIKEY then riles up Michael G., who solemnly informs Ben that they will not be friends!  Mikey gathers up his GI Joes and his Star Wars action figures and makes sure Ben knows he will not be playing with them again.  Brandon starts crying.

Rose Ceremony!  Brooks looks moist and narcotized.  Cut this week are Brandon the Decompensater and Some Guy Named Dan.  Bradon awesomely says he got his "heart smashed by a hammer" and "once again, someone left me."  LINE FORMS RIGHT HERE, LADIES.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Ask an 11-Week-Old Baby

Dear 11-Week-Old Baby,

My wife and I share one car.  Usually this is no problem because she takes the bus to work and I drive.  But now she says she wants to start driving to work.  If I have to take the bus, it will take me about an hour each way, instead of the 20 to 30 minutes it takes to drive.  We can't afford another car.  How can we resolve this?

Commuting Couple

Dear Commuting Couple,

Oh my fucking God are you fucking kidding me.  This is the kind of shit you can't work out on your own?  Try not having any gross motor control and get back to me.  Say, tell me something, can you get in your one car and go drive and get anything you want?  Guess what?  I am totally dependent on these two supergeniuses in my house to provide everything.  I can't even order fucking Chinese because I can't use a phone or speak or even use GrubHub or Eat24 or whatever works best today.

Here's an idea that works around my place.  Strap your wife into a six-point restraint and then put her in the backseat facing backwards and drive around for a while and then take her out when you're somewhere else.  That usually about does it for me.

"Can't afford another car."  Holy hell.

New topic, is your wife lactating, by any chance?

11-Week-Old Baby

Friday, June 7, 2013

True Tales of the Tenderloin

I've got a friend who's in her early 60's (but looks a lot younger) and works in the Tenderloin.  She told me she was walking to go work out down there and she passed what looked like a guy hassling this kind of scared-looking woman.  She's a do-gooder at heart, so she did what most of us would never do and stopped to ask the woman if she needed any help.  The woman, who was clearly shaken, said she was looking for the YMCA.  "Oh, that's where I'm going," my friend said.  "I'm going to the gym to work out."

The guy who was hassling the woman looked at her and said "Bitch, you don't need to work out!"

She said it was the best compliment she's ever gotten.

No real point to this story except I think it's hilarious.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The Bachelorette: It's a nightmare. Absolute nightmare.

I feel ya, Al.  You only had to run an organized crime family.  I have to watch a group of low-functioning primates compete for the chance to enter a faux TV engagement.  You're the lucky one.

So here we are.  Chris Harrison has gathered this barrel of monkeys to explain the rules.  Date cards, roses, you know the drill.  From their expressions, it looks like he's explaining DNA's double helix structure to a manatee, but they'll figure it out.

The first Solo Date is with BROOKS, who looks exactly like the guy who hits on you at the craps table at the Bellagio and calls his friends "my boys."  Dezzie has a "desire and a passion to design wedding dresses," ok then, so it's off to some mid-LA dress boutique to put on funny outfits whatever whatever and then there's a breaking-the-fourth-wall problem when they hit up a cupcake truck and get mobbed by fans.  Cupcake trucks.  Ugh.  Then they drive up into the Hollywood Hills and hang out on the 2nd "L" in the Hollywood sign, no joke.  Brooks is already thinking big picture and he opines that one day he'd like their relationship to be "as idolized as this Hollywood sign."  The fuck does that mean, like some cult of personality shit or something.  I just wish someday I could be like Brooks and Desiree's relationship, little girls will write in their diaries.  This is giving me the creeps.

The shit gets SCARY because they're driving through an area with some graffiti!  Don't worry, Brooks, if some poors appear you'll be good.  Dez speaks poor, she totally used to be one.  Anyway, Brooks needn't have shit his pants upon leaving Westwood because it's all a setup for an Outdoor Dinner on some bridge.  Over dinner, Brooks confuses Dez with a therapist and starts spilling his guts about how his Dad bailed on him from 13 to 19 and made Brooks REAL MAD.  I have some bad news for Brooks, because once Dad sees this, he'll probably pull the plug again.  Anyway, D is moved by this tragic tale of paternal abandonment and gives him a rose and then they are treated to a concert by some fifth-level Maroon 5 knockoff and if you're wondering if there's any way you could make Maroon 5 worse we sadly now have an answer.

SIDE NOTE.  One thing that's new this season is that they're projecting people's Twitter posts about the show along the bottom of the screen throughout the episode, so yay, if you were wondering what the Mouth Breathers and the Partially Chromosomed of America were thinking you are no longer in suspense.

The Wife: "Melfosterrr is surrounded by cats with a cat sweater on eating Duncan Hines frosting from the can."  I suggest you recalibrate your Crying Threshold, Melfosterrr, because if this shit makes you cry you are going to need hospitalization after that commercial with the dogs greeting their owners coming back from the war.

OK, let's get to the worst thing that happened on the show tonight, and I realize that is a fairly low bar.  On this group date, 14 or so idiots are transported to a winery in Malibu where, instead of trying wine or being buried alive or some other suitable activity, they will be making a RAP VIDEO with SOULJA BOY who is either drunk or has gotten some colossally bad advice from his handlers.  So we are treated to the spectacle of 14 white people and Soulja Boy - wait, I think Traumatic Brain Injury Will might be black but it's hard to tell in this light - jumping around "dancing" and doing whatever it is white people do when they try to rap.  Oh, TBI Will says he can't dance, so that clears that up.

At night we have the Drinks Portion of the date.  Hey, what would be a creepy gift?  A creaky, old-timey wooden wheelchair? An old stuffed animal with one eye missing?  Sure, yeah, but none of those are even REMOTELY  as creepy as the gift Drilling Fluid Engineer presents to Dez - an ANTIQUE JOURNAL he bought somewhere WITH AN INSCRIPTION TO A GIRL NAMED CARA FROM DADDY and THE JOURNAL IS ENTIRELY BLANK.  Ohmyfuckingshit, DON'T TOUCH IT DESIREE!!!  Cara obviously never got a chance to write in it because MOMMY DROWNED HER IN THE RIVER THAT NIGHT. If you take that home, Dez, I guarantee you Cara will crawl out of it one night and pluck your eyes from your head.

Meanwhile, in Meatheadville, a Grown Man named MIKEY has decided that Ben is up to no good and is Not Here For The Right Reasons and so confronts him with his suspicions and what the fuck show does he think he's on?  Maybe he IS here to make friends.  Back with Dez, Brandon is trying to woo her by explaining "I was born and I had a Mom and Dad like you did."  Very good, Brandon!  "I'm also a biped and process oxygen in my bloodstream, so I think we have a lot in common."  Oh wait, Brandon's got a sob story with an absent Dad too.  ANYONE WHOSE DAD DID NOT LEAVE THEM, PLEASE QUEUE HERE.  THANK YOU.

Solo Date with Bryden, the Iraq War vet.  They go on a road trip to such places as "El Matador Beach" and "Orange Grove" and "Convenience Store Falls" and end up in Ojai which is actually a real place.  Oh good, Bryden has a Damaged Goods story too.  Amazingly enough, his trauma is not from being shot at in Iraq or being named "Bryden," it has to do with some bad car accident he was in.  Luckily for us, he carries around some snaps of his charred skin and broken face, which Dez dutifully looks at like they're HS graduation photos.  Then it's off for a dip in the pool and some face sucking.  Gross.

OK, Cocktail Party.  Michael G. valiantly tries to come up with a suitable Personal Trauma story but I guess his Dad stuck around because the best he can manage is that he has Type I diabetes.  NICE TRY, DUDE.  You need at LEAST Type III to be in the running here.  Anyway, Ben cuts off his tale, mid-diabetes, and this enrages the villagers because he already has a rose and Mikey arranges a bro-fontation with everyone else named Michael and Ben and then he calls everyone "kid" and it's over.

Rose Ceremony.  At this point, I don't even worry about learning their names, so a bunch of people I've never seen before are apparently sticking around.  Who's leaving?  TBI Will and some Generic White Guy who says "It's a nightmare.  Absolute nightmare."  You think this is bad? Try being named "Bryden," dude.