Naturally, as Marianna collects her clue, Ron begins to instruct Christina on every aspect of how to do this. She's very close on her first try, so she definitely has the basic idea of it. I mean, she's within three or four inches; there's nothing fundamentally wrong with her technique. Nick and Don are a bit ahead of Marianna and Julia as both teams leave on the bikes. Nick and Don, however, miss the sign for the drop-off. Marianna and Julia see it, so they're team seven. Don and Nick follow as team number eight. Phil says to Don, "There's been complaints from the locals, you got down to your underpants." As someone noted on the boards, you could watch a whole season just to hear Phil say "underpants," and it would be worth it. Don ominously says he wore less than that.
Sooo, here's Christina. Just as she's about to go, Ron stops her -- to an actual record-needle-scratch on the soundtrack -- to tell her that a girl is demonstrating how to do it down the ditch a bit. He lectures about the right technique, and placing the pole in the right place, and it's just not helpful at all. Again, she tries, and again, she's very close. Kate and Pat, meanwhile, are approaching the field in their Tiny Van Of Doom. Ron continues berating Christina for her technique, telling her she should have it more in the center, blah blah, and she finally says, "Daddy, I just need to concentrate." He says he hears her, but he ignores her and goes back to lecturing about the physics. She repeats, "Daddy, I just need to concentrate." This means: "Shut up." This time, she gets over. She gets her clue as her dad laughs and says, "I think I could have done it better." Well, of course you do.
They head for the exit. She sits in the little bike basket, and he's going to pedal. "How does that feel for you?" she asks. "It's okay," he says, adding, "You need to lose some weight." Wow, necessary. And smart! He bitches about the "crotchbuster" bike, making Christina feel more and more self-conscious the entire time. They land on the mat, and they are team number nine, and honestly, she doesn't look that happy that they're still in. I think part of her might have been ready to go home. She takes the best possible interpretation, saying that they both "want this so badly for each other" that it's making it hard. I don't really think that's what it is, honestly. He's kind of an overbearing prick, even if he's an overbearing prick who loves her. He tells us that he can be "crass" in how he treats her, calling himself "the Archie Bunker of the home," and unfortunately, I think he's a lot more prepared to address his conversational style, in terms of saying rude shit to her like "lose weight" and so forth, than he is to acknowledge that he's fundamentally unsupportive of her in a way that's really painful for her. He's chagrined, but I think he's chagrined about the wrong things, because if he knew enough to be chagrined about the right things, he'd stop doing them.