Brad Goes on Hometown Dates

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Chantal and her daddy talk alone and she promises that she would never marry someone that her parents didn't like, but she does like Brad and she wants her daddy to talk to him. So Chantal's dad takes Brad to stand in front of a large statue of a naked man carving himself out of rock. It's an allegory for a self-made man and Chantal's father kindly includes Brad in this category. They bond over having masons (rock, not free) in the family and not talking to their fathers and how nice Chantal is. Meanwhile, Chantal and her mom cry over love and emotions and feelings. Chantal's dad takes Brad to the considerable wine cellar and tells him that he approves of the match and their marriage would have his blessing. Brad thanks him, shakes his hand firmly, and the evening draws to a close. Out on the porch Chantal and Brad kiss briefly and bid each other farewell. Brad claims that he can truly see a future with Chantal. America yawns, because there are three more dates and three more families for Brad to see his future life.

From Seattle we fly to the other side of the county to Madawaska, Maine, whose claim to fame is that it is the northernmost point in the continental United States. This is not where Ashley actually lives now, but where she grew up. She reminds us that she hasn't seen Brad in awhile and is feeling a bit disconnected, but hoping that just goes away as soon as she sees the titular bachelor. Brad pulls up and Ashley leaps into his arms and he almost twirls her around. He surveys the scenery and the girl and (much like in Seattle) declares that he could live there. You know, if he didn't live in Austin. And, no, he's not moving. And, no, he's not kidding. Except about the living in Maine part. He was kidding about that. Ashley takes Brad to a local (the only?) restaurant in Madawaska and explains that the area is rife with Acadians who speak French and eat weird foods like French fries covered in cheese and gravy. How un-American is that? The waitress comes up and asks in Acadian French if they are ready to order and Brad says, "Si." Which he is quick to point out is not French, but rather Spanish. Brad's stupidity then becomes a "thing". Maybe it is their "thing" that they can laugh about even in the middle of a fight or over coffee at the hospital when their daughter is giving birth or on Brad's deathbed when Ashley asks him if he is ready to leave this mortal coil and he says, "Si." And she smile cries and he is gone.

Brad scoots her chair closer and scratches her arm familiarly. The Canadian cheese fries arrive and Ashley insists they use their fingers to eat the fries and Brad stares at her like she is a talking squirrel (cute, but why is it talking?) Then Brad and Ashley go horrify the locals by giggling over lobsters and mocking their honor system farm stands. Brad is really excited that Ashley is in a good mood and perky and seemingly interested in him as opposed to the dour, unhappy, simpering girl he kept through the last 47 rounds of elimination. The point is, shut up Brad.

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