Let’s just admit it – we’ve all watched at least one episode of “The Bachelor” or “The Bachelorette.” Sometimes you just need some trashy TV to get your mind off your own chaotic life. My husband won’t be pleased that I share this, but we’ve watched “The Bachelorette” together. Somehow this show brings us closer as we fold laundry and make fun of the contestants. I recommend you watch this show only after your children are asleep. Our 3-year-olds accidentally caught a glimpse and asked why none of the men had shirts on and why everyone was crying…
We make fun of it because it’s based on very unrealistic expectations. 25 pre-screened, gorgeous (but mostly crazy) people are all competing for a potential mate that they’ve never met. The show takes place in an elegant mansion stocked with endless amounts of booze, and features outings to exotic locations no regular people can afford. The extravagant dates feature helicopter rides, hot tub soaks with champagne, and tropical beach frolics. To put this into perspective, my husband and I met in a dive bar in college and our first date was at Starbucks. Honestly, if given the opportunity to go on the dates featured in this show, I could temporarily fall in love with a scarecrow. Not only is it unrealistic, but it sets the couple up for failure.
I propose they try these 18 alternative dates. It may ruin the show, but it would be entertaining.
- $20 date night: Here’s a crisp $20 bill – make the most of it.
- Babysitting: The couple must babysit five children together.
- Connecting in chaos: They try to have a conversation while being nailed by nerf gun balls and people screaming over the top of them.
- Cooking night: Grocery shop and cook a real meal together, for themselves AND six guests.
- Wallpaper removal: Anyone who has done this knows how cruel this one is.
- The $10 gift: They each have $10 to come up with a thoughtful gift for one another.
- Carve pumpkins: C’mon now, that’s a real-life romantic date.
- Clean: Give them a messy house and they must decide how to divvy up the chores.
- Road trip: The passenger must navigate/give directions.
- Read together: Yes, I’m serious. Take turns reading out loud.
- Have an ACTUAL serious conversation: One about religion or politics. It cannot include “here are my fears about laying my (so-called) heart on the line while you simultaneously date 24 other people…”
- Community Service: Volunteer at a homeless shelter. Pick up garbage. Do something that reveals character.
- Lice check: Tell the couple (regardless of whether it’s true) there has been a lice infestation in paradise and they must go through each other’s hair.
- Construct furniture: Put together a complicated desk. The instructions are written in poorly-translated English.
- Real competition: Play a board game together, pool, or darts.
- Laundry folding: Isn’t it amazing how everyone folds a little differently?
- Family night: Host a get together with BOTH sides of the family together in one place.
- Get inked: Each picks out a tattoo for the other person. Minotaur? You’re probably not getting a rose tonight.
I also think they should have a “fire drill” in one of those paradise hotels so you can see how they all react, but that might be taking things too far. I think the lice scenario may be far enough.