Yes, I Watch The Bachelorette!

Since this column is about this n’ that I am going to let you in on a few of my viewing secrets this week.

Yes, I watch the Bachelorette and I have to tell you I don’t know why I got hooked on the Bachelor and Bachelorette series. At first, I think it was out of boredom and curiosity. I didn’t understand why any woman or any man would think they could find a life long partner on a show such as this. My other thoughts wandered around as to why any woman would want to put herself in this position especially when it came to the Bachelor. I deduced it is the writer in me liking to study human behavior. These shows do seem to be addicting.

This week watching Rachel Lindsay choose hometown dates I was hit with the fact I am color blind in most instances. The moment happened when she asked one of her dates what his parents would think of him bringing home a black woman. I was shocked. I have long ceased seeing Rachel as a black woman. I see her as a beautiful independent and smart woman, but I haven’t seen color in spite of the hype.

My reaction was, “That’s right, I forgot there is still an issue of color with some people and I forgot Rachel was black. It was a shocking moment for me to realize I had made that transition somewhere in my life. It wasn’t always that way.

I wasn’t prejudiced, I just had never had any interaction with any other race except for mine growing up because I lived in a white community in rural Minnesota. I was curious.

There was a big hype about Rachel being the first black Bachelorette. The show has been deeply criticized for having all white Bachelors and Bachelorettes so far. I wish we would quit seeing race and see people in this country. It would be a better place for our children to grow up.

But back to the reason, the Bachelorette is on television. We still want to believe in love. Love seems to have fallen down the drain with divorce being more common than wedding anniversaries. Is it possible to find real love during a television season?

Arranged marriages were not uncommon in the earlier days of our country and in foreign countries. Some of them worked very well. Maybe parents did know something back in those days when they chose a spouse for their child.

On June 13, 1998, David Weinlick married Elizabeth Runze at the Mall of America in Minnesota. I remember this well since I live in Minnesota and remember thinking this was a crazy way to get married. Weinlick had told his friends he would get married on June 13, 1998, but the problem was he didn’t have a bride. So his friends ran a campaign to find him a qualified bride. His friends, after interviews of 28 people and in depth thought picked Elizabeth. David and Elizabeth got married after only a five-minute conversation the previous Monday. In 2008 and they were still together and had three children. This is according to the Today Show.  They still have a lasting marriage and I think one more child came along but David is now struggling with cancer. David Weinlick  I don’t know his status as of this posting. The point is this arranged marriage lasted through thick and thin.

So will the Bachelorette’s choice bring her a life-long marriage? We all know marriage is hard. We laugh, we rejoice, we struggle and we want to quit on occasion but commitment pulls people through. Remember the vows for better, for worse.

Some Bachelor Nation couples have made it through the hype and publicity and have remained married. Maybe the franchise has something we didn’t know or didn’t remember. Maybe the parents in the “olden days” knew something and we thought it was a silly and stupid and our strong wills tossed it aside. It takes more than sex and a few kisses for a lifelong commitment.

Who will Rachel choose? Maybe we should let the parents decide. That could be another reality show for ABC. And we should put blinders on the parents so they don’t see color just personality. What do you think ABC? Is it time to branch out to “Let The Parents Decide?”


I confess, I am hooked on ‘The Bachelor’

Something About Nothing by Julie Seedorf published week of February 23, 2015 in the Albert Lea Tribune and The Courier SentinelI confess

They say confession is good for the soul. I have a confession to make. I can’t believe I have this to confess. I watch “The Bachelor.” I have to eat the words I have spoken in the past because I made the statement that I thought it was a ridiculous show. That was before I became hooked on this season of ABC’s “The Bachelor.”

I didn’t understand the hype. I didn’t understand why it was a popular show. Watching the end of the last “The Bachelorette” series, quite by accident, I became intrigued by the cute farm boy from Iowa that the bachelorette didn’t pick. It doesn’t matter how old I am, I still can see cute and handsome. The cute, rejected farm boy from Iowa, Chris Soules, is this season’s bachelor, and he seems to be a nice guy.

In the ’60s there was a rumor that songs on the radio had hidden messages that enticed you to keep listening to them. Perhaps “The Bachelor” producers have incorporated that into their program and we don’t know it because it is easy to get sucked into the program and the drama.

In case you don’t know the premise of the program, a bachelor is looking for a wife. The program brings numerous women for the bachelor to date over the weeks, eliminating some of them in the rose ceremony until he finds and falls in love with the woman who hopefully will be his wife.

Over the course of the years and the shows, there have been some couples that have been successful in their search and others that have split up soon after the program ended.

Although this program with the Iowa bachelor has become an obsession with me, I don’t understand why these beautiful women, and also men with “The Bachelorette” program, would put themselves in the position they are in during the show. I imagine some of them are there for fame and fortune that might follow because they get noticed.

I can’t imagine being one of these women waiting for a turn to have a one-on-one or a group date with the bachelor, let alone know that he is also romancing and kissing other women. In this case each woman is waiting for the bachelor to notice them. He makes them each feel special, but they don’t know if it is special enough. We hang on every moment.

I found myself as I watched the women who were waiting, wondering and on pins and needles, some in tears, asking myself, “What is wrong with this picture?” In the real world would it be OK with us to be in a queue competing, waiting for someone to honor us with a little attention? Would we be so forgiving if someone we were seeing was kissing and holding other women? Probably not.

I realize this is a reality show. I don’t feel this is a game to Chris Soules. I am partial to Iowa and the reason I watch this season is because Chris Soules seems to be genuine. I wonder how many of the young women and teenagers that possibly watch this get the idea that it is fine to wait for someone to notice them and choose them,  while the one that is possibly the object of their affection is noticing someone else at the same time.

Love is a waiting game but reality shows aren’t really reality.

I will admit I am old with some old-fashioned ideas. When I was dating we didn’t have the Internet and the world wide communication we have now. The people we met and dated were from our communities, or places we visited or colleges we attended. Keeping in touch with those boyfriends and girlfriends farther away meant we had to write letters and use the telephone. Our space for meeting people was limited. Other people would play matchmaker and introduce us to people they thought were right for us.

How many people of the older generations would have chosen different people if they had the wide opportunities that are available now? What I understand from listening to those who are looking for someone to share their life with, is that it is hard in 2015 to meet people because of the busy world we live in.

Single people are limited in small farming communities such as the town where this year’s bachelor resides. The younger people move to the city, without the familiarity of small towns where everyone knows everyone.  Meeting a potential spouse is harder.

In 2015 we have a wide range of dating sites matching people to other people that makes them compatible. I know people who have used these sites and found beautiful people to marry.

As I root for my favorite woman to win the bachelor’s heart I am still mystified as to the process. I am still baffled as to why it keeps me glued to the program. Perhaps it is because of Cinderella. We love the story of Cinderella meeting her prince charming. Maybe “The Bachelor” and “The Bachelorette” is our 2015 version of Cinderella. I don’t know, but I can’t wait to see who is chosen for the happy ending.