It was final 3 week. Sean took Lindsay, AshLee and Catherine to Thailand because he's "frickin' crazy about all three of them." Catherine is "sweet, funny, intelligent, weird, nerdy and goofy." I thought the writing was on the wall for AshLee when he said, "I need more silly in my life."
|AshLee's heart (right)|
With Lindsay, he said, the "spark has grown into a massive flame." I think he meant it in a good way. At first he didn't think she had the depth or maturity he was looking for but now sees that she's "loving, caring, generous, supportive, and hilarious."
Lindsay was the first to try her hand at deflowering the man-child. But first she had to bring herself to saying those three embarrassing words: I love you. And boy, was it awkward. If there's kissing involved, Lindsay's a champ. But speaking sincerely is a strain for her. This was also the first episode where I noticed she sounds kinda ditzy. Maybe I never noticed before because she's a brunette.
The couple went to a market and tried grasshopper and some other bug. No sign of Joe Rogan anywhere.
|Enough with the Tweets already|
Back to the date. Sean said he feels like he's with his high school sweetheart when he's with Lindsay. Plus, she's the adventurer he needs because he wants to live a fun, exciting life. For her part, the 24-year-old told Sean she was ready to settle down. And it sounded almost as convincing as when she managed to squeeze out "I love you."
They wound up at a place that translated as Monkey Beach, for some strange reason. Can't figure it out. They fed some little kids frolicking in the sand.
Lindsay said the reason she hasn't yet expressed her undying devotion for Sean is because she's afraid of getting hurt. It got me thinking: How is this different from Lesley? It clearly doesn't matter if a girl tells him she loves him or not, it would appear. It's just an excuse he can trot out if he's not feeling it from someone when he sends them home.
When it was cards on the table time, Lindsay got all tongue-tied. It was painful to watch. "I'm so excited for our life to start," she said. "You make me so happy. I mean... it doesn't get any better." Sean knew she had something on her mind so he asked her what she was thinking. Pause. And saved by a parade! That was a close one! So there was no mention of the L-word.
Not then, anyway. Later she fumbled around saying, "There is something I do want to tell you... I love you." That may read lovingly and warm but believe me, it was the farthest thing from that. Her face said, "I know I'm supposed to be saying this so I will but I don't like it one bit." Still, it made Sean feel good no matter how insincere it sounded. But it got her to the fantasy suite, which she jumped at, even without Sean letting his intentions be known. This leads to my theory on why I think he chooses Lindsay. If the cover of People magazine at the checkout counter is to be believed, the winner, his fiancée, is chomping at the bit to consummate their relationship. The fun-loving Lindsay seems more likely to joke about it than the more "traditional" Catherine, who would probably suffer in silence.
Knowing that AshLee was sent home, we can look for clues (and signs of future damage) after the fact in her date segment. She started off by saying, "I love Sean more than words can express." Oh great. This isn't going to end well.
|That is the question|
They survived. Ash was making a concerted effort to change her thinking and a lifetime of being in control. The wall she'd built up around her was crumbling. Sean was a huge part of this process and that brought about a deep love for him that would soon shatter. She felt there weren't two human beings who belong together more than the two of them. Ouch. "Every part of my being wants to be engaged to Sean next week." Double ouch.
They talked about being single at their advanced ages (ah, the folly of youth!), which led to AshLee saying, "Why settle?" and "I'm glad I waited." I guess the editors cut out the rest of her sentence, which was, "I'm glad I waited until I was 17 to get married."
But there was the whole fantasy suite card to ponder. AshLee doesn't take it lightly. She said she's not willing to morally put herself out there when he was still dating two other women. She expressed her concern to Sean, saying, "I don't want it to come across that the boundary has been crossed." And then immediately accepted the invitation to the sex room.
And then, in a moment that might have cost her, she rattled off what kind of engagement ring she wanted (diamond encrusted) and told him her ring size, saying, "I definitely know what I want." This is a side of AshLee we hadn't seen before and it might very well have scared him off.
And she ended the segment telling us, "This man has literally mended my broken heart." So he is a cardiologist afterall.
He did say he still had questions about her. He also said that of the final three, their lives were the most different. So those are potentially more hints about the final result being Lindsay. But we know how the editors like to try and trick us.
Sean asked her if she'd be open to living in Dallas. She would because she's "pretty expired in terms of Seattle." She was also "pretty pissed" at her sisters, for throwing her under the ice bus. She opens up more to her friends than her sisters, so how would they know what she wants? Why didn't she invite her best friend to the hometown visit then? I know the vast Bachelor-viewing world loves Catherine but I'm not sold on her. She's fine but I haven't developed any feelings for her one way or the other in all this time.
Catherine said she saw them with "a kid involved" within five years. Not sure the involvement. Don't want to know, to be quite honest with you. She admitted she's "pretty traditional, which is surprising because I'm so weird." So was now the time to hit him with the full extent of her feelings toward him? Go for it, Catherine!: "I like you a lot." Doh! Fail.
She read the card from Chris Harrison (more likely the prop department because I refuse to believe Chris has such girly handwriting) offering a night in the sex room. Catherine did the requisite dance: she's a traditional girl, blah, blah, blah, and then accepted. She told us she likes that Sean treats her like a lady and said, "Being intimate tonight is very important." Spoken like a true weirdly traditional gal.
So did they or didn't they? Is Sean really saving himself for marriage? Maybe Catherine wanted to be intimate and when the doors were closed Sean put the kibosh on that idea. But something AshLee said on her exit makes me think he won't be a virgin bridegroom afterall. But we'll get to that.
Sean woke up from his 3-day sex binge knowing who to send home. The other two relationships are just stronger. When he described his choice as "one of the sweetest women" and "so full of love" I knew for sure it was AshLee. She is definitely that. And gorgeous, too. By far the most beautiful in a classic sense of the three. So while I feel bad for her fragile psyche, I have no doubts she'll find a good man in no time.
When Harrison sat down with Sean, he asked the bachelor if he thought his wife was here. Sean said, "I think it's gonna happen, yeah." Harrison's response was, "Wow." What the--? I know statistically speaking the show has been a disaster at arranging marriages, but come on, Harrison, at least act like you knew it would happen this time.
Sean then watched three personal videos the ladies made for him. Lindsay's was cute but offered nothing. More awkwardness, like she didn't really believe what she was saying or just supremely embarrassed at having to talk sincerely. Catherine's was more real, more earnest, serious and sincere, with a touch of fun, calling Sean a "mega-hunk." When AshLee's video came on, Sean's beaming smile, which was prevalent throughout the first two, subsided. AshLee, to no one's surprise, choked up. She said things like "together we're whole" and "I'm no longer broken. For that, I will always love you."
That sealed the deal. Sean knew he must re-break AshLee. "I just know I'm not supposed to be with her," he said. But he was worried (rightfully) that "she won't be okay once this is over today."
So the final rose ceremony of the season arrives. AshLee brought out her big guns to help in the deciding process. But Sean was perhaps blinded in the headlights because he stuck to his own guns. AshLee looked unconfident while Lindsay and Catherine both looked hopeful. Given none of them knew anything, why would AshLee be concerned? In her mind, they were one. They were getting engaged next week. But she must have known something. The roses went in order to Lindsay and Catherine. Ash stood there looking steely and angry. As Jobim might have said, she stood and stared in icy silence.
Cue: How Insensitive, by Antonio Carlos Jobim. The guy is the one staring in icy silence in the song, but the sentiment is spot-on:
How insensitiveHere's Dame Shirley Bassey switching roles for a musical interlude:
I must have seemed
When she told me that she loved me.
How unmoved and cold
I must have seemed
When she told me so sincerely.
Why, she must have asked,
Did I just turn and stare in icy silence?
What was I to say?
What can you say when a love affair is over?
Now she's gone away.
And I'm alone with the memory of her last look.
Vague and drawn and sad:
I see it still,
All her heartbreak in that last look.
Why, she must have asked,
Did I just stare in icy silence?
What was I to do?
What can one do when a love affair is over?
Chris Harrison missed his cue. He didn't come out and offer condolences and instruct her to say her goodbyes. So AshLee didn't. She just walked away, right past Sean telling him to "just stay here." But Sean followed her out, begging her to let him tell her his reasoning. He said he thought it was her from the beginning, it was the hardest decision, and he thinks the world of her. Throughout his soliloquy, she stared daggers into his shrunken heart. "I did not want to hurt you," he pleaded. She said nothing and when he was done got in the car, as bricks were slowly being added back to the wall that had begun to break in her throughout the season.
"This wasn't a silly game to me, a joyride, about laughter and joking and having fun," she said. Clearly not. And here's where I think maybe Sean and her got it on back in the sex room. She said, "It's hard to say goodbye to Sean because I let him in and I loved him. I just feel a little heavy in my heart." Well, it is enlarged.
"Let him in." Sure, it could mean she opened herself up emotionally to him and allowed him into her ever-expanding ventricular muscle. We know she loves a good metaphor. But maybe this time it was more literal and was her circumspect way of saying they did the nasty. Who knows?
"It's the ultimate reject," she said, no doubt feeling abandoned once again. "I thought Sean was the one." And I felt for her. I hope she's fine.
Which leads us to next week. We'll get to hear how she's doing on the Women Tell All episode. It has all the makings to be one of the best ever. Not only will we hear from AshLee, but there's Tierrable, Desiree, Lesley, Kacie and probably others I've forgotten.