Back at The Moose Lodge (these nicknames are getting more and esoteric, aren't they? Can I maybe just stick with ManDaLay Bay for a while? It's kind of my favorite), Shannon, Original Bachelor Cast Member, makes a toast: "To screen time, and my having lots of it!" That, or something about getting to know new friends. Or wait, is that Missy? The remainder of the bachelors sit around the table with The Three Wise Women as Shannon, Original Bachelor Cast Member, tells us in an interview, "We're on a mission...It doesn't seem like there's anything wrong with any of them." Back at the table, Charlie treats us to a numbing table reading from The Big Book of Exceedingly Monotone Public Speaking, explaining what a "chiseler" is and how Russ is among their ranks. Charlie explains that Russ was "chiseling" his way in with Trista, being at the top of every staircase and lurking behind every doorway during their group date in Vegas and trying to get as much time with her as possible. And that's all he needed to say. But he talks and talks, all but pulling down a chalkboard with X's and O's all over it to explain how this "X" is Trista and this "Y" is Russ and this "Z" is the first letter of "zzzzzzzzzzz." The girls seem scandalized that Russ is so calculating, which is why they just sold their best friend up the river and are such excellent judges of character.
Over at the Gosford Park gazebo, Russ and Trista's limo pulls up, and they emerge to find a schmancy meal waiting for them. Over smacky meal consumption, Trista again chooses the conversational route of most resistance, filibustering, "Any guy that pushes too hard or tries too hard or is too anything in the beginning is a guy who turns me off." Okay. OKAY, already. We get it. We thought he sucked already. We wouldn't have asked him on the date. You don't have to convince us. Stop selling us your emotional Amway. We already hate him. God. But Russ again volleys what Trista serves up, retorting, "I just want you to know that I was sincere in how I was feeling and that kind of thing." In an interview, Russ tells us that Trista kissed him in Vegas, and that he "took it maybe a little further" than he should have. A flashback of Vegas shows Trista very slowly backing away after a kiss and holding up her hands in a gesture I think we're supposed to believe means "You keep your greasy mitts offa me, nasty nasty bad man," but which in reality was probably Trista noting, "Both of these hands are empty of liquor and I simply do not know what to do about it." Russ seems confused, telling us, "This is our date. This is our last time to be together before the next Rose Ceremony" (doubtless the most shocking one yet!), "and if I'm into her I want to let her know that." Here's one way, Russ: "Trista? I'm into you." Here's another way: [stage direction: Russ kicks back his fifth shot of Jäger and tongues Trista down like she's a mud-splashed feral tiger.] Outside of The Gazebo Of Repetitive Honesty, Russ confronts Trista head-on, telling her, "You kissed me out of the blue." She tries to defend herself and retorts that Russ was clearly the aggressor, but Russ does that I'm-such-a- good-guy-that- I-have-to-tell-you- what-a-good-guy-I-am- so-then-you'll-know thing where he'll drop some incendiary comment ("I don't think it's totally romantic sitting on one side of the table") and then discount it with his response to everything she says ("No no no no no") because her words have no value. And then? And then her words have no value: "I was feeling it. That was my way of telling you without being affectionate with you in front of other people." That makes not a lick of sense. Knowing this, Trista kisses him to escape further awkwardness, because when in doubt, physical intimacy. Russ feels better that they had their talk. I wish I were dead.