I’m not quite sure what it is about 20-something women in Los Angeles, but they all seem to have tattoos on their forearms. These little black wisps of ink, blurring back and forth as they move their hands and express themselves and judge others about their married boyfriends, cheating boyfriends, or boyfriends with penises that may or may not be working correctly. The forearm is the worst place for a tattoo because it will constantly remind both the wearer and the looker of the folly of youth.
Look at Scheana and Kristen, who both sport treble-clef tattoos on their wrists that they invariably got when they were 18-year-old seniors on an overnight trip with their show choir when dreams of musical-theater fame still blossomed under their extension-dragged scalps. Kristen’s tattoo is worse because it’s not only a treble clef, but also a bass clef that’s reversed and backed up onto the treble clef so that they make a heart. It’s as if Kristen’s soul is made of music. We all know that is not true. Kristen’s heart is made of rotting kale salads and Champagne belches, which could make their own kind of music, I guess.
Speaking of judging women, the best part of this episode, by far, is the whole interlude between James Kennedy, the scream that you make when trapped in a car underwater, and SUR server Ellie. (I think we should officially start calling them all SURvers.) Ellie has been around for a while, but she doesn’t have a real place on the show. This is probably because she has an accent as mysterious and fatal as the identity of Jack the Ripper. When Ellie goes on a hike with Lala, we learn that she secretly dated James for a few months but didn’t tell anyone because she was ashamed. Then, after James got that long-distance girlfriend, she kept sleeping with him on the side.
There are so many things wrong with this whole scenario. When Ellie claims to be embarrassed about getting James’s bangers and mash, she’s either lying to us or lying to herself, because she went back to the full English-breakfast buffet multiple times. “We all make mistakes,” she giggles to Lala, to which Lala very appropriately replied, “Yeah, once.”
Also, it seems like sex with James is pretty awful. Apparently, his idea of bedroom talk is telling women they mean nothing to him and that if they tell anyone, he will deny it because he doesn’t want people to think that he’s sleeping around. If that is not enough to make you get up, throw on your ugly purple SUR dress, and drive back home in your leased Honda without even remembering to put your bra back on, then I don’t know what will. Because of this whole ordeal, when Ellie wakes up in the morning, she takes pictures of herself in James’s bed so that she can prove to everyone that she did, in fact, have sex with him.
As this scenario blossoms out from Ellie and Lala across the whole spectrum of current and former SUR staff members, isn’t it weird that no one else thinks this is odd behavior? No one stops to just ponder this whole thing and say, “Okay, that is really messed up.” No, they all think that this is totally normal, that this is the way the world works. It’s in the same vein as when Scheana asks Ellie if she’s met “Lala’s married boyfriend,” and she says, “No, I haven’t,” and then Scheana reports back to everyone that Ellie somehow confirmed that Lala has a married boyfriend. Um, didn’t she tell you the exact opposite? How exactly do these people’s brains work?
Speaking of people with brains that don’t work, Lala has to understand that by continuing to bring up her boyfriend without disclosing his identity, she is welcoming all sorts of rumor-mongering. If there is nothing to hide, she wouldn’t have to hide it, or at least she would need a reasonable explanation for why she is hiding it. Instead, she keeps acting like there is something to hide and then gets mad when people try to figure out what it is.
I loved when she was telling Lisa about her problems with the crew and Lisa asks, point-blank, “Are you dating a married man?” and Lala replies, “I’m not dating a married human being.” That is one of those perfectly calibrated responses so that, later, when everyone finds out that she’s lying, she can go back and parse it out. “Actually, my boyfriend is married, but he is also from the planet Neptune so I was not lying because, technically, he is not a human being.” This is how Lala’s beautiful mind works and, ugh, it makes me want to lie down in the gutter after a bottomless brunch with my skirt over my head and never get back up again.
The only people who have brains that actually seem to work are Tom and Ariana, and Tom is someone with hair-styling choices as questionable as a late-career Whitesnake video. These are people who ride a bike to dinner in L.A. and have the valet park it for them, which is simultaneously horrible and adorable. But at least they’re real. I used to think that Ariana was boring, but I realized that she’s just a little bit out of place. Ariana is a nice normal person who doesn’t feel the need to get married and wants to live life by her own rules. I respect and admire that. I think that Ariana is the first person on this entire show who I like unironically, so I’m glad we got some time with her and Tom together. However, as with most normal people on these shows, she really has no place here whatsoever.
While Tom and Ariana seem like a nice, happy couple, I don’t know what to make of Tom and Katie. Whenever they fight, I’m not sure exactly what is going on because Katie’s perceived grievance always eludes me. I see how it would be annoying that Tom keeps bringing up the fact that he doesn’t want a wedding, but why does Katie have to let it bother her so much? It’s not like he’s saying he doesn’t want to marry her, he just doesn’t want the cost or attention of a huge “rustic elegance” ceremony in the woods where real trees are welcome but wood on the centerpieces is not because we only want the woods to remind people that they are in the woods. Seriously, every time Katie starts screeching I have no clue what she is angry about, so I totally understand Tom’s predicament.
Speaking of my once and forever lover, it was really hard watching him work this week. Ostensibly, Tom is a model. Now, while he is physically perfect to me, he’s not really in abs-baring-underwear-model shape, which is why I was a little bit shocked when he was booked to model for a line of shorts that comes with matching socks. When he starts shooting, he leaves his shirt on, which is sort of like trying to give yourself an enema but forgetting to take the cap off. Not only does it not make any sense, it’s also not doing its job.
To make it even worse, he needed a whole lot of help in the bulge department to make the pictures believable. What, exactly, is going on with Tom’s dick? Katie accused it of not working and now, here it is, literally not doing the job that, professionally, it has been hired to do. Tom’s dick is a deadbeat. Tom’s dick is a taker. It is collecting welfare and on food stamps. It is exploiting loopholes in the workman’s comp laws so it can lay about watching The Price Is Right and not go back to work. What a lazy dick Tom has.
You know that makes me sad. It makes me very, very sad. It also makes me sad that no one did anything with that peach after the photo shoot. You know which one — the one they made Tom stuff in his drawers so it would make it look like he had an actual member of the working model’s union in his underwear. They let that prize peach just rot on the shelf. Oh, I would have loved to bite that peach, tasting the musk it had just picked up on its journey, the earthy scent of masculinity that oozes out of Tom’s knickers. I would have let the juice run down my chin, diverted into dozens of rivulets by the stubble, and then motioned at Tom to walk over to me. He would have stopped and grabbed me gently by the arms and sucked the juice right off my face with a passionate slurp. Then he would have moved up to my lips as we kissed passionately, letting our bodies fall into one another in a sloppy embrace, each taking turns to rip some more of the ripe flesh off of that peach’s dark, hard center. We would have continued this until it was all done and we were both satisfied, round after round of intimate consummation. We would do this all day. We would do this without ever taking our T-shirts off.