Camille cops to feeling attacked by her results, and I've got to say you would too if your words were "superior, relentless, headstrong, defiant, outspoken, cunning, aggressive, opinionated, demanding, and single-minded." And thus every blank in the Mad Lib "A Trip To Camille's was nobly filled in. And those words were certainly the worst of the bunch available, I'm sure. It makes you wonder why the designer of The Christensen Judgment Sheet would leave out such obvious designations as "Camille-loving," "elevator-not-holding," "Fisk-constantly-talking-about-ing," and "that'll do, pig."
But next! It's time for Santa Bear to take down the room a little bit. The next thing the girls will be doing is a series of exercises in which they speak in front of each other to...again, I'm not entirely sure. This is totally the one emotional-clearinghouse episode. It's very special. Lupus. Got it.
Mercedes has a great relationship with her mother. Shandi...well, doesn't. She's always been "the black sheep" of her family, and the only person she's ever had to talk to is her boyfriend. And now his girlfriend is a supermodel! Boy, did he luck out. He's almost as lucky as the guy who becomes Shandi's boyfriend next!
The next exercise they have is to answer the question, "The worst thing I've ever done was...." Sara starts to tear up when she says she's never been able to be honest with her father, adding without provocation that she loves her very supportive mother. Sara returns to her seat all weepy, which allows Santa Bear to return to the locus of his somewhat hazy point: "That is where charisma comes from. It comes from public self-acceptance." Or, in the case of stand-up comedians, writers with public personas, most actors, and I'm guessing one out of every one politicians: public self-acceptance is one thing, but private abject self-loathing is...the same thing. But wait, there's more: "The models that succeed do so not because of how they look." Uh-huh. "They do it because they let people see their individuality. Who they are." So, it was just Jenascia's soul that was too short, then?
"My mom always thought that I looked like a boy," Shandi says, spooning out the last of her Frozen Café Truth Serum-uccino from a near-empty Starbucks Cup. And, having referred to her as my long-lost fraternal twin brother, I have no leg on which to stand with the whole righteous-indignation- against-the-parents thing, have I? I have not.
J. Alexander comes pounding through the door, and we learn that he'll be staying for dinner and bringing along a "special guest." Said guest is a woman named "Suzannah Galland," a self-styled "intuitive advisor." Ooooh, a psychic! And while I never gave that much credence to the horoscopes or any other ostensibly spiritual art one could find broken down by star sign into blurbs appearing below "The Family Circus" on a page marked "FUN!" in my local Newsday, it'll be worth it for the "it's like you've known me all my life!" reaction the girls will give to her platitudes about being themselves no matter what happens. ["No matter what others might think, I'm sure that this gifted professional wasn't given dossiers on each of the girls in advance. Though others might consider that a distinct possibility. Which I do not." -- Wing Chun] I went to a Halloween party with a psychic at it once, and she took one look at my costume -- which included a significant amount of white paint and black lipstick, but no, I wasn't a mime -- and gathered, "You aren't like all of the other boys." I was like, "Gee, what gave it away?" It was no Sydney Omarr telling me to cultivate my desire for romance by wearing shades of green and mauve, but it was still pretty good. And so is the good and great Suzannah, who takes Mercedes's birthday (8/24/81) and immediately busts out, "Your body's tired. Your mind isn't. Sometimes you want to do more than you physically can." All this and without one word from the producers! ["Exactly!" -- Wing Chun] "Camille...you put people off." All this and without one word from the producers! ["I'm saying!" -- Wing Chun] Sara asks her how her father is going to react to her becoming a model, and Suzannah responds, "He's gonna hate it, but he's gonna secretly love it." When he figures out that the part of Muslim religious doctrine about which parts of the woman's body are never to be seen in public is...what, a typo? "April, you are determined to be a top model, no matter what. You will be a top model." Wow! The stars said that? I am looking at the wrong constellations. Xiomara: "I don't know how long you remain friends with people. It isn't shallow. It's self-protection." Also, if you're forced to pack quickly and abruptly leave a place, that would be an inhibitor to remaining close with people as well, and I don't know why but I just feel like that's on the cusp of happening, for some strange reason. And Shandi? Well, no one ever hugged Shandi. "I'm not close with pretty much anyone in my family," she confides in a confessional, and back at The Séance Of A Once Razor-Sharp Show About Careerist Bitches Who All Wanted One Very Good Job, Shandi is hugged by Yoanna (where you been, girl?) as the rest of the girls cry at Shandi's bad lot in life. Even J. becomes a human being and offers Shandi a big, manly hug. Or maybe he's just looking for her to show him to the aisle with the nude hose and lady fragrances.