Amazing Race
I'm Going To Jail

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Miss Alli: B- | Grade It Now!
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Officer, we're not with him

Elsewhere, Linda and Karen get into their new taxi.

Brandon and Nicole, apparently short on American money, try to pay their driver half in American currency and half in Kenyan. He only wants the dollars. I bet he just wants to see some of the new twenties with the pink on them. Weird-lookin', the new twenties. Brandon asks him if he's ever used Kenyan money, and the guy says he hasn't. At this point, Brandon finally tells Nicole he thinks they should just give the driver his hundred dollars, and they can exchange the other money at the airport. She's very unhappy, and the way she disbelievingly says, "A hundred dollars," going into the airport, it makes it sound like she was trying to give the driver less than a hundred bucks worth of value and save some money, which I hope isn't true, because trying to rip off your cabbie after you've made a deal is not cool. Oh, that's a theme, too. It's even worse if you consider the fact that Brandon and Nicole's driver did a pretty good job for them, and was pretty aggressive about passing other teams when they asked him to.

Inside, they get talking about the money with a very buttinsky-like Chip, who opines that a hundred dollars might be enough to change that driver's life. Which I doubt, particularly once he pays his expenses out of it, but...okay. Brandon asks Nicole to "chill out about the money." She protests, and Chip voices over that he agreed with Brandon, and that Nicole shouldn't "let money guide [her] emotions in a negative way." Uh...again, I agree with Chip in normal settings, but being thrifty does make a certain amount of sense in this situation. And I don't think Nicole is letting money guide her emotions in a negative way. I think Nicole is letting a severe lack of sleep and having worn the same clothes for three weeks guide her emotions in a negative way. She just needs a rainbow -- a symbol of God's promise, you know -- and she'll be right back on track.

Again, Chip preaches to Nicole his "Pay It Forward...On The Assumption That You'll Be Paid Back Later" theory that everything you give out is what you get in return from...the universe, I guess. Not missing the implication that she's ungenerous, Nicole disbelievingly asks if they think she's "not a giving person." She doesn't understand why Brandon doesn't see her point, and he assures her that he does. In a way that I think shows marked improvement from the way he used to talk to her, Brandon says very calmly, "I understand where you're coming from, but I disagree with you." Imagine something that mature coming out of the mouth of a reality show contestant -- and one who used to try to play the God card when he didn't win, too. You don't see that every day. He insists that he still thinks they were right to pay the driver in full, in dollars, as he wanted. Nicole makes some stupid comment about how they're being "raped for money," and seriously, shut up, Nicole. Countries where people have problems you never have to think about are good places to watch your hyperbole. And then she talks very suspiciously about how they wouldn't be charged so much if they weren't American, as we see a very telling shot of Kim off to the side, trying in vain not to notice the conversation at all, probably because no part of it is particularly flattering to anyone. Chip narrates unnecessarily that Nicole was upset with Brandon for agreeing with Chip's outlook, and he adds that she "needs to do a lot of maturing." I don't know. She says some stupid things, but I actually thought they handled that disagreement in a relatively healthy way. I like the way they had this discussion, for the most part, although it would have been better if Chip had stayed out of it. Nicole is allowed to have a different opinion of what to do about the driver than Brandon, and though I think she's overly suspicious of how she's being treated, she comes by it honestly, by way of last week's bus rip-off. And to the degree Nicole is perhaps too cynical about her situation, Chip is entirely too rosy about his. Brandon's got it about right, I think. He knows when he's being ripped off, but he also knows when to cut his losses and recognize that a certain amount of imperfect business behavior goes with the territory. You know, if you had told me in week one that the closest thing I would have to an imaginary boyfriend this season would be the Bible-spouting model with the Christopher Atkins hair, I would have said you were obviously smoking something. I don't even like blonds. But anyway. I think I like it when he yodels.

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Amazing Race

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