<Author’s note: I originally wrote a summary for this show last week, but – just as I was finishing the last line before posting it – Microsoft’s bug-laden Internet Explorer browser software crashed, deleting the entire summary (partially my fault for using the one Windows computer I own instead of my stable Macs running Unix). Unfortunately, it was (at least in memory) the most brilliant summary that I had ever written, and I’m not sure if I’ll ever write that well again. If you would like to preserve such brilliance, you need to help persuade Microsoft to produce more reliable software in the future. Please send a letter to “Bill the Bugmeister” Gates or “Slipshod Steve” Ballmer, Microsoft Corporation, One Microsoft Way, Redmond, Washington 98052-6399 U.S.A. It’s probably safer to not use e-mail, since you never know what viruses might be preying on Microsoft bugs at the time.>
The Roadies are beside themselves with glee. They finally got another tattoo and are off to Tahiti! Everyone is excited, but Dave is the most excited of all. Why? Because Tina is plastered all over him like wallpaper, snuggling and cooing. Call her Velcrogirl. If this is how far Tina will go just to get Mary Beth’s goat, I’d hate to see what she’d do if she were really after Dave. Dave doesn’t appear to be feeling any reticence in Tina, but he’s feeling just about everything else. He says he’s falling for Tina’s “trap.” That’s the first time I’ve heard that euphemism in years. Meanwhile, Mary Beth stares daggers at the two of them. Dave should be glad that the producers don’t actually provide her with one.
I feel a little sorry for Mary Beth. Imagine, spending all that money to have your bOObs inflated and become Siliconegirl, and then you still get upstaged by Velcrogirl. And, if you’re not ready to take the chance of becoming Siliconemom, your options to fight back are limited.
Even if they are distracted by the soap opera in their midst, the Roadies know that the skills they were assigned in Fiji are probably going to be needed soon for a mission, and so they practice. Dave has orienteering, Mary Beth has lock-picking, Abram had native-fire-starting (with a flint, not by rubbing two sticks together) – and so Chris has to take it over, Christena has Morse coding, Cara had foreign language translation – and so Tina has to take it over, and Donell has logic-puzzle-solving. Yes, you read that right: the Roadies must depend upon DONELL to use his “brain” for something other than formulating bile and recognizing edible objects. The Roadies are doomed, and they know it. One of the sayings that Chris puts into Morse code for Christena to translate is: “WE ARE IN DEEP DOO DOO.”
Tina hates the pressure of studying the foreign languages (French, Spanish and German) after having just been with the Roadies for a week, and unleashes another fine whine. She’d rather be doing something she’s good at. Unfortunately, there isn’t a role for “hooker” in this challenge, and she wants her “handsome reward,” so she tries. But it’s tough, especially for someone like Tina who struggles with English words of more than four letters.
Mary Beth, meanwhile, is getting good at lock-picking. She’s grown to enjoy slowly, slowly slipping the steely pick into the opening in the firm lock body … sliding the pick back and forth until it’s positioned just so within the lock … and then jiggling the pick, slowly at first, slowly, then more insistently, faster, and with greater urgency, increasing the rhythm, until the body of the lock shudders as the pick makes contact with its “hot spots,” and the lock finally relaxes and opens … then the pick withdraws. Mary Beth wipes the sweat off her forehead and her upper lip when she finishes. Mary Beth has been in the South Pacific for too long.
Donell, though, is oblivious to it all. He wants to walk on the Tahiti beaches barefooted and munch chips, not do anything painful like think. He’s sure he can handle whatever the challenge throws at him, although he’d rather switch his skill to “pie-eating.” How about crow-eating? He’s probably never heard the word “hubris” in his life.
Tina decides to hone her French skills by going to dinner with an older local, Octave, who owns the restaurant near the Roadies’ place. She plays it safe by planning to meet the other Roadies after dinner, so that Octave can’t pressure her into “paying” for a dinner with a man in the way that she normally does. Octave, however, is more interested in Frenching than in French, and when she tries to escape, he goes along and invites all the Roadies to go dancing, which they accept.
Tina, now fueled by both her need to escape from Octave and her anti-Mary Beth fantasies, epoxies herself to Dave on the dance floor. Mary Beth, who doesn’t have any Superglue remover, decides to dance with Octave, in the hope that Tina will become jealous. Octave asks her to dinner the next night. She accepts. And Tina does get jealous! Tina manages to unglue her lips from Dave long enough to call Mary Beth “sleazy.” Pot, meet kettle. Chris warns Dave about the danger of two women fighting over him. We’ll return to “Junior High School Confidential” in a minute….
Mary Beth debates what to do about her dinner with Octave. The “meeting some friends” ploy is out, so she decides to wear a T-shirt instead, thinking that her lack of effort in dressing up will tell Octave that she’s only there for the food. However, it never occurs to her that, in Tahiti, a woman who wears a T-shirt on a date means, “I’m desperate! Take me!” Octave gives her a black pearl necklace with the Woolworth’s going-out-of-business-sale tag still attached to it. They dance. He gropes, but not too aggressively --- it’s hard to go too far out-of-bounds when you’re being filmed for use in possible future sexual assault prosecutions. Afterward, Mary Beth tells Dave that Tina called her sleazy. Dave furtively stares at her chest, almost as if he’d forgotten about Siliconegirl’s main attributes. Maybe he had.
Donell still eats and loafs. Everyone is worried. Tina offers to swap missions with him, saying that she doesn’t even know English very well. Hey, Tina, stop stealing my punchlines! Nope, Donell’s not interested in languages, either. Dave finally decides to help Donell study the book of word puzzles. No use. Donell just guesses. Donell’s interest in puzzle-solving is as limited as his interest in dieting. Dave says that Donell has the attention span of a barnyard hen and finally gives up.