The first thing you should know is that I watched this episode with the lovely folks who came to the New York City TARcon, which was frankly even crazier than last year. Racers, posters, and some kind of a kissing/glitter theme pretty much guaranteed that the thing is now officially an institution, for better or for worse. I'll have more to say about it on another day, but there aren't enough thanks in the world for the generosity, enthusiasm, and warmth of the people who made it a great event for everybody who showed up. My absolute, bottom-line, absolutely no-kidding thanks to all the TARflies, the Racers...eh, if I try to do this now, it will take twenty pages and it will be me at my most overwhelmed and girly, so we'll just say, "More to come."
Previously on Have Big Honkin' Issues, Will Travel: Phil launched the race in the Nevada desert with a relatively straightforward run across the sand to your backpack, but everything just got a heck of a lot more complicated from there. Deidre and Hillary got us off to a flying start with a highly emotional exit, and Norm and Hope followed by being just as appealing and just as bounced. The Grannies discovered that New York is not a good way to get from Rio to Johannesburg. Team Xerox tried not to look down, but sand is deep and hard to drive out of. Cyndi and Russell bungled the water taxis just when I was starting to get used to their earnest Midwestern charm. The Fruit was an appealing concoction, but she lost her cool in Hong Kong and choked on some herbal tea, and it was back to the hot rollers for her. Gary and Dave golfed themselves to death, and Danny and Oswald, fabulous as they were, couldn't quite ride their Zen into the finals. No one liked Wil. Boston was made up of That Guy and That Other Guy. Blake and Paige screwed up again and again (and again), and somehow managed to avoid elimination anyway. Meanwhile, Alex and Tara chicka-bamped across South Africa, and Boston and Taraweasel had an unsteady on-and-off alliance that seemed to involve plotting to screw each other more than actually offering each other help. Blake and Wil intermittently threatened and complained about each other like a couple of seventh-graders arguing about who butted into the lunch line. Wil thought Tara was stupid. Tara thought Wil was stupid. Everyone else thought they were both stupid. The Horns Of Perseverance got a real workout. Whose dream will be ful-Philled tonight?
Credits. One last time: "Note! To! Self! For sake of men-tal health! Don't start some tor-tured thing! Like writing words! To! Sing! You! Will! Find! It can't be left! Be-hind! You'll have to still...do it...and then...do it...again!...and so...no! More! Tricks! Next time the pro-mise sticks! No gimmicks! [BOMP.]"