TSI Episode 1: Nice Guys Finish Last
Welcome to the CSI, I mean, CBS network’s summer season. We TAR fans are delighted to see our favorite set of manboobs guiding us and a bunch of misfits around the world for The Amazing Race. And was I the only one who cheered when Mr. Exposition Hands made his first appearance in way too long? I don’t think so.
And what would TAR be without TSI? For the uninformed, TSI stands for TAR Stupidity Index, the measuring stick used to poke fun at the foul-ups on our favorite reality series. Last season’s TSI winners were Reichen & Chip…who also happened to win TAR. Coincidence? I don’t think so.
Even though I am now a sleep-deprived new mom, I couldn’t resist getting this column back up and running to skewer reality show contestants. It’s just too good of an opportunity to pass up, especially given the teams running this season’s Race:
Brandon & Nicole – They’re dating. They’re models. She’s a pageant queen. Too.much.fodder.
Kami & Karli – Identical twins with dorky identical twin names.
Linda & Karen – They bowl. And unlike the svelte twins, these moms look like they spend almost as much time at the bowling alley’s snack bar as they do battling the pins. I know, I know…I shouldn’t poke fun, especially given how overinflated my bod was just a few short weeks ago.
Marshall & Lance – They’re brothers. They make pizza. And they quickly remind us all why we loved the Festers. They’re no Festers.
Charla & Myrna – Charla’s a little person. And unlike most reality show contestants, this time I’m referring to her stature, instead of her IQ.
Dennis & Erika – They used to be engaged, and they’re doing the Race to get closer. Most of us run quickly from the ones we’ve dumped, but not these Einsteins. Oh, between them and the models, I’m already in content heaven.
Bob & Joyce – They met over the Internet. No wonder my family worries about how much time I spend online.
Colin & Christie – They’re dating, and they confess to being stubborn control freaks in the first 5 minutes of the show. Yeah, we all know what a lovely combination that can be (Need examples from previous seasons? How ‘bout Wil? Or Flo? Oh, I already hate them for reminding me of those two, um, people.)
Chip & Kim – Married people who have their own computer company and spend WAY TOO MUCH time together. Look, I love Mr. Bebo, but spending all that time together is just wrong.
Jim & Marsha – Military dad and his little girl. He still sees her as a little girl. Time will tell if his view is justified. I figure we’ll have an answer before the end of the first episode.
Alison & Donny – AGH! My eyes! My eyes! It’s her again! For those of you who didn’t watch Big Brother last year, let me give you a brief overview of Alison: she’s a skank. And Donny is the devoted boyfriend who watched her skank all over another guy and treat everyone like dirt on her way to runner-up status on BB…and he’s still with her.
After seeing skanky Alison on yet another reality show, I feel an overwhelming urge to shower. I need to cleanse.
Post-Cleansing Scoring Summary
For those of you scoring at home…just remember, I am a sleep-deprived new mom. We don’t like to be contradicted. And besides, I think I said it well last season – this is my column, start your own if you really think I’m off base. And while the points for a particular week may not reflect the team most likely to win, over the course of the entire Race, it worked out quite nicely last season. You’ll see that our early TSI leader is one of the middle of the pack teams. Time will tell whether their position in the race improves or their TSI standing declines.
Last season’s scoring system awarded Dicques to those teams that made a smart decision that helped them in the game. More often, teams were awarded Ryans for stupidity, and the number of Ryans was a subjective statement on how stupid the move appeared to be. These names were from the granddaddy of reality shows, Survivor. This season’s points will be named in dishonor of the hottest reality show, The Apprentice. Reward points will be called Trumps, in dishonor of the biggest media whore of all, The Donald himself. Love him, or hate him, you have to appreciate the fact that he has more money than God. And penalty points? Why, those are Omarosas, of course, in dishonor of the reality show contestant who believed it is better to be reviled than forgotten. What’s the ratio of Trumps to Omarosas? There is no equivalent between the two, since an Omarosa could never, ever become a Trump. We all know that, even if she couldn’t figure it out.
So how did our teams fare in Episode 1?
1. Colin & Christie (7th in Race) – They couldn’t find the flags at the airport and earned 5 Omarosas.
Scoring Summary: 5 Omarosas
T-2. Linda & Karen (3rd in Race) – Those ridiculous T-shirts earned fashion deductions, first just for having them, and then for getting the white one wet during the Zips or Chips Detour. White t-shirt + swimming pool = 10 Omarosas.
Scoring Summary: 10 Omarosas
T-2. Bob & Joyce (4th in Race) – In a Race where teams are expected to find things, it’s a bad sign that they can’t even find the trunk release on the car, so they earn 10 Omarosas.
Scoring Summary: 10 Omarosas
4. Marshall & Lance (2nd in Race) – Take the lead in the obnoxious American contest when one of the doughboys comments that “they’ve got women driving back there”. That earns 10 Omarosas from me, along with the speculation that they’ll make the most insulting comments about foreigners as the Race progresses, if they last long enough to meet many foreigners. When one also comments on “picking up the paste”, I add 5 more, since I now know I can count on these guys to make inappropriate comments for as long as they last. Tack on 5 more for their inability to find the flags at the airport.
Scoring Summary: 20 Omarosas
5. Alison & Donny (1st in Race) – She gets 20 Omarosas just for being Alison, while he gets 20 more for still being with her after she skanked on national TV once. He even admits in the beginning that it’s stupid, when he says “for some reason, we stay together”. He does earn the first Trump of the day, when he has the presence of mind to ask the United ticket agent to check and see if that flight lands before the American flight, since this insures that his team ends up on the quicker flight.
- Donny on why he’s still with Alison: “God’s playing a weird joke on me.”
- Alison’s comment on their team after explaining to Donny that a ferry is a boat: “I’m the brains, he’s the brawn.” And I’m nauseous.
- When they went for the flag instead of the clue box at the Detour: “Yes, there’s a clue. We’re missing it.”
Scoring Summary: 1 Trump, 40 Omarosas
6. Brandon & Nicole (6th in Race) – They get 10 Omarosas simply for being models. Not fair? Hey, life’s not fair. It’s about time y’all learned that lesson. And speaking of lessons, Brandon…saving money can be helpful, but not if you end up being much slower than the other teams, so I’m deducting 10 Omarosas for your decision to save money and walk instead of hailing a cab. Nicole also earns 10 more for whining and making him carry her bag. That may work in the pageant world, but you need to carry your load here, sister. But the big point deduction comes when Brandon refuses to let Nicole help make the decisions, because she needs to trust the Lord. So, how long have you been under the delusion that you are the only person on the planet connected so intimately to the Big Guy? 40 Omarosas for adding to the negative portrayal of Christians on reality shows.
Scoring Summary: 70 Omarosas
T-7. Charla & Myrna (5th in Race) – Getting lost on the way to the first airport does not bode well, and it also results in 20 Omarosas. But they earned a Trump when they were able to vault into second place after the morning boat rides, even though they were on the second boat. They obviously picked the right moment to grab a cab instead of a bus. However, Myrna’s whining and their overshooting the butcher shop by 4 blocks gives them 40 more Omarosas. During the Detour, Myrna insisted they do Chips, thinking it was “a sign” since they like to gamble. Then after they completed the Detour, she wanted to play one-armed blackjack to win some money. Um, hello, you’re in a Race, so I’m giving you 20 Omarosas for getting distracted.
Scoring Summary: 1 Trump, 80 Omarosas
T-7. Jim & Marsha (10th in Race) – Within the first 10 steps of the Race, he has fallen and seriously injured himself. Not a good sign of future success, so they earn 30 Omarosas. Marsha earns a Trump for her team by befriending the Thrifty rental van guy, which allows her dad to get the medical attention he needs and still not miss the flight. I’m sure Thrifty appreciated the free advertising too. They earned 30 more Omarosas for letting the 9:00 boat people catch up to them, since they couldn’t find the flag after the boat ride. And it sure didn’t help Jim’s injured leg to take the stairs during the Detour, especially since they ended up getting locked in the stairwell and had to backtrack, so they get 20 more Omarosas.
Scoring Summary: 1 Trump, 80 Omarosas
9. Chip & Kim (8th in Race) – They missed the clue box at the Detour. They get 100 Omarosas for the blunder, since it cost them first place…and a trip to Hawaii. Even worse, Alison & Donny got the trip instead. Am I the only one who thinks they’ll fight the whole time they’re there?
Priceless quote – at the pit stop: “We’ve done everything you could possibly do wrong, and we’re still here.”
Scoring Summary: 100 Omarosas
10. Kami & Karli (9th in Race) – 10 Omarosas are given to their parents for giving them such sickening twin names (with sickening twin spellings). Since their parents are not in the Race, the girls will take them on by default. I’m tempted to award more Os for Kami’s (or was it Karli’s? Who can tell?) statement that she “doesn’t know whether it would be better to be on first or last flight”, but when it’s later revealed that the second flight gets in earlier, I erase those points. But they still earn another 5 Omarosas for back-seat driving and swearing. While it may not affect their standing in the Race, that behavior makes me want to hit the mute button and wish that they would hurry up and get eliminated so I don’t have to feel like I’m watching Flo-squared. Add another 30 Omarosas for having a hard time finding the flag after the 8:30 boat ride, since they gave the teams on the final boat a chance to catch up. But their biggest blunder was missing the clue box at the Detour, which dropped them from second place to ninth and resulted in 75 Omarosas. (They got less than Chip & Kim since they didn't lose a Hawaii trip in the deal.)
Scoring Summary: 120 Omarosas
11. Dennis & Erika (Eliminated) – Anyone think that formerly engaged people will be able to work together well enough to win the Race? Anyone think they’d want to go through this sort of close experience with an ex-fiance? Me neither, which is why they start off with 20 Omarosas. Dennis brings up further questions to his intelligence by buying tickets for three teams (even though 2 of those teams are researching another flight…why have them research it if you plan to get them tickets? Hello?) and then alienates the other teams in line by claiming that he was just holding tickets for the other teams while they’re in the bathroom. Since none of the other teams check their passports to see if they were born yesterday, Dennis earns another 30 Omarosas for generating such ill will, especially since his team ends up on the slower flight. This also leads to the pivotal moment when Dennis gives up the taxi to Colin & Christie in an attempt to improve his image. Too bad that image improvement doesn’t keep them in the Race, since giving up the cab put them far enough behind the other teams to guarantee their elimination. It also resulted in 100 Omarosas.
Key quote – at the ticket counter: “We should have known. We’re stupid." Yes, and you’re also out of the Race now. Buh bye.
Scoring Summary: 150 Omarosas
Marshall & Lance prove I’m right with a derogatory comment about foreigners.
Alison & Donny fight (surprise).
Chip & Kim fight with the twins…which makes me like them more and more.
Have whip, will travel.