Backs Against The Wal-Mart

Episode Report Card
Jacob Clifton: B- | Grade It Now!
Lesson Twelve: Use Your Words

Come night, Team Gold Rush is eating ice cream and fries and gazing longingly at each other, making lists about what is most lovable and sexy about each other, them as a twosome, them as a team, their concept. They call each other "mates" and Lee tells us they're in their honeymoon period and that they are very much in love with each other. Maybe now that there's just two of them, they've become each other's alpha dog. That's sweet. If it were anybody else I would really enjoy it, I guess. It's Girl Power in the grapes, basically, but they're both so lost and childish that it's kind of hard to look at. Sean tells us they are very, very different, but also similar, and that he "actually" adores Lee. They adore each other for a billion years and take loving pictures of each other with their camera phones and giggle like chicks and then go look at hardware.

Synergy: Tammy asks Roxanne when the banners are coming, and Roxanne doesn't know, so Tammy takes off to do some more work. Roxanne and Allie talk about how uptight Tammy is, and how mean she's being, even though she isn't. Roxanne says that you can see how flustered and frustrated Tammy gets, that you can see it all over her face. They come upon Tammy in a pile of stuff, looking stressed, and she whispers, "What would you guys like to do?" Allie and Roxanne get very uppity about "why are you talking to us like that" like she's all of a sudden getting hardcore after letting their bullshit go on too long. Which she is, but that doesn't actually let them off the hook, since that's the game they're playing. Tammy explains that they're not respecting her, and she's not getting any support, and Roxanne says this is "unfair." She says that they keep rolling their eyes at each other, and we get an extended remix of one-on-ones from both of them about how they're not rolling their eyes, blah blah, but...they're totally rolling their eyes. It's funny, but I feel Tammy's pain. I mean, seven hours too late and it really does become your fault, in my opinion. And the fact that she didn't respond means she was either being (A) all timid and Pee Girl about it, which is horrible, especially as a PM, or (B) honestly didn't get the vibes until it was too late, which I can't really believe, and still doesn't inspire a lot of confidence in me for a PM. Talk about reading a room.

She tells them she wants to "prove" herself, which is a good goal for someone so frequently retiring to have, and then stupidly gives them the ammo of saying two clauses you never, ever say: "I know this sounds selfish, but..." and "I want this to be about me for a change." They way overreact and pretend they don't know what she means, because the scarred half of the Sales coin is that, just like you can pretend pizza sandwiches are God's Gift to the palate, you can also pretend that Tammy said the thing you decided to hear, and not the thing you know you heard. That you can privilege the word over the spirit knowing damn well that's not how she meant it, but have the fact of her words to hold against her. Which is the last refuge of the asshole who's playing emotional games, and now...I have nobody to root for. Nobody at all. I vote for Charmaine and Tarek and Andrea, still. I doom myself to dissatisfaction. I mean, though, really: they're all three playing the same stupid self-justifying game, which is that if you did/didn't actually "say" it, with your lovely little mouth, then it didn't happen. Allie and Roxanne didn't say out loud "this idea is very gay," but they said it very fucking loudly nonetheless and she pretends to be deaf to that; what Tammy is saying is, "Please support me so that Trump will finally realize I'm in the room," but Allie and Roxanne pretend to be deaf to that too. Privileging the ten percent of communication that is purely verbal over the ninety percent that is tonal and physical and contextual, thinking that you can at some later date appeal to the Speech-Act Gods and say, "But that's not the transcript of what she said, it's just implied," which is another way to say, "I choose ignorance and pettiness over authenticity."

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