West Lee’s Blog: Episode 6

So much has been made of the Courtney saga this season–she dominates every episode; she’s all anyone talks about around the water-cooler the next day; and I’m starting to feel like she’s all I’ve been writing about too. So for this edition of my blog, I’m only going to say one thing I noticed about her and then wash my hands of it until next week:

A lot of people look at Courtney as evil. I don’t think that’s true. Sure, I’m just as guilty of making jokes about her villainous ways as anyone. But deep down, I don’t think she’s a bad person. I think she likes attention, is a good judge of what gets people going (in good ways AND bad), and capitalizes on that to satisfy her desire for the spotlight. But based on what I saw in this week’s episode, I don’t think she’s all that happy with that aspect of herself.

Let me put it another way. All dogs have this basic desire to please their owners and receive attention from them. It’s innate. If you train them properly and they can find productive outlets through which to receive that recognition, they will be (for the most part) well behaved. But if they don’t receive the attention they need through behaving, they will act out in order to make you take notice. Maybe it’s chewing your shoes. Maybe it’s peeing on your floor. Regardless, it’s all designed to get a reaction out of you. Often, people will blame the dog, but it’s not usually the dog’s fault. Again, they just want to please. Most of the time, it’s because they don’t know another way to get the attention they want.

When Courtney said in this week’s episode that she’s afraid Ben will lose interest in her because most of the men in her life have done so after a while, it was easy to say ‘well yeah, maybe you shouldn’t give up the goods so quickly,’ and to a degree it’s true. But maybe the more important question is why does she act that way? Why does she intentionally set the other women off? Why does she play to Ben’s libido? Perhaps it’s because it’s the only way she knows how to get attention. Maybe when she was younger she didn’t get the attention she needed through normal interaction, so she developed these tendencies as a way of compensating. In turn, maybe all she needs to change her ways is for someone to appreciate her for who she is and not what she looks like naked.

Of course you can get into the whole chicken vs. the egg argument from there, but it’s something to consider. Maybe she’s not that bad. She’s definitely funny, and I’m sure she has other good qualities as well. Anyway, food for thought. Moving on.



“Let’s See If Our Love Can Survive”

My personal favorite, Kacie B., gets the first date card, making her the only girl to receive a second one-on-one date thus far. I’m happy for her. It was hard to see her in pain as she watched Ben’s relationship grow with other ladies while hers sort-of stagnated after her initial date in Sonoma. It’s also usually a pretty good sign, as it indicates that the lead has a strong interest in you and wants to pursue things further.

The date card reads “let’s see if our love can survive,” and gives the vague instruction that Kacie should pack three things. Ben arrives to pick her up, and a short helicopter ride later (4!) we find out that the two are set to spend a day together on a deserted island. Kacie says she’s nervous because she and Ben will be all alone. Well, aside from the camera crew. And the sound guys. But other than THAT, no one.

When they get to the island, they each empty their bags. Kacie brought a Swiss Army Knife (not a bad choice, assuming there are some really small vines to cut or Ben wants to clip his toe nails), some Gummy Bears (perfect for the stranded diabetic), and a stuffed Monkey (wait, what? Unless the monkey’s name is Wilson, I’m not really sure where she’s going with that one). Ben’s bag was a little more practical, containing a machete, fishing net, and a box of matches. So between the two of them, they might actually be able to survive a night in the wilderness. Well done.

Not that it matters, because by sundown they’re back on the streets of Panama City heading to a quaint little bistro for dinner. It’s here that Kacie decides to reveal that she once had a pretty severe eating disorder that came to a head at a Super Bowl party hosted by her parents. WOW. I was kind of expecting a Super Bowl tie-in since the show aired the night after the same, but that was NOT how I expected it to play out. But it’s endearing that she manages to turn such a negative period in her life into a positive, and Ben appreciates that about her. She gets the rose.

Group Date

Not going to spend a lot of time talking about this one (see earlier comment re: Courtney). What I will say is that while I was VERY pleased to see Lindzi get the rose, I wish we would see more of her from week to week. I feel like she’s had maybe 45 seconds of airtime in the last month.

The THUNDERDOME Date (thanks, William)

Ever since Will from my season called the two-on-one date the thunderdome date, I can’t get it out of my head. TWO WILL ENTER! ONE WILL LEAVE! I don’t know; it just fits.

Rachel is rightfully a bit nervous, while Blakeley seems extremely confident (insert overplayed joke about threesome here). I can see the logic behind both girls’ feelings. I was never big into competing for attention during my season, and as a result I just kind of faded into the background. So I can understand Rachel’s not wanting to have to deal with it, especially knowing that she may very well be going home that night. But I also appreciate Blakeley’s view, because I think we should always be appreciative of opportunity when it comes our way, no matter what the obstacles are that come with it. Make the most of every chance, as it were.

The dance portion of the date was pretty boring, to be honest. In my opinion, Blakeley may have taken her attempts to be sexy a bit too far–he’s a person, chica, not a pole. But nothing really stood out to me as being too noteworthy.

Dinner is where I think Rachel really separated herself from Blakeley and made it apparent that she was the one that should be kept around. During her conversation with Ben, Rachel was very level headed, stating her case without coming across as overly desperate, and making it clear that she understood and sympathized with Ben having to make a tough decision. Blakeley, on the other hand, came across as extremely desperate by busting out a scrapbook and having a mini-breakdown over never getting a one-on-one. I don’t have a problem with the scrapbook in theory. For example, I thought it was really sweet when JP did something similar for Ashley. But the difference is they were getting down to the end and some very real feelings had developed, whereas Blakeley had only spent limited time with Ben. I don’t know; it just felt very 9th grade to me.



Casey S.

When Chris first mentioned Casey S’s ex to her, I thought it was going to be another Justin Rego situation, which had me a little angry. But after it came out that Casey was really trying to move on because, although she loved her ex very much, she didn’t think he would ever really commit to her, my point of view changed completely. In a way, I went on the Bachelorette with a similar mindset. Yes, my wife had died almost four years prior, but since then I’d fallen for another girl–my best friend. But for one reason or another things had never quite worked out for us for be more than friends, and I had reached a point where I thought it was time to move on. So it wasn’t completely like Casey’s situation, but I was still trying to get over someone, and I thought the best way to do that was to put myself back out there. We’ve all been there at one time or another. Could we both have done that without going on national television? Maybe; but that’s neither here nor there. Anyway, the point is–I can definitely relate.

That being said, I’d just like to say this to Casey: you deserve fulfillment, and someone who wants to make you happy just as much as you want to make them happy. If you haven’t already, I’m sure you’ll find it soon. I’m sorry things worked out for you the way they did on the show. Seeing you in pain like that, realizing that for all your best efforts you still weren’t over your ex, broke my heart. But maybe it was for the best because hopefully it gave you some time to reflect and realize what you’re really worth. I wish you nothing but the best going forward.

Rose Ceremony:

Jamie. Good lord, girl. Watching you try to turn Ben on was like watching the first season of the Office, or that scene in Swingers where he leaves like 8 messages on the girl’s answering machine. I literally had to pause the show and walk away on not one, not two, but THREE occasions. Brutal.

That being said, you seem like a very smart, sweet girl, and I applaud you for all you’ve done to take care of your family in a bad situation growing up. I wish you all the best going forward as well.

Well that’s all for now, folks. Apologies for the somewhat serious tone of this week’s blog, but sometimes things just strike a chord and you have to go with it. Hope you all have a great week, and I’ll see you next time.

16 Comments »

  1. My thoughts about the episode this week were definitely most in line with your blog. I can really appreciate you trying to look at Courtney from a different perspective and I think it’s definitely something for people to consider. I don’t necessarily think that it makes the way she’s treating the other girls right, but I do think that everyone is the way they are for a reason… So people need to stop judging so much.

    I felt the same way about Casey S. I felt awful because I think it portrayed her in the wrong way. I feel like it’s safe to assume that most people who go on the bachelor/bachelorette are in some way trying to move on or get over an ex. I don’t think it was something she even considered to be a wrongdoing. I mean, Ben went on in a way to move on from Ashley… And since that’s been the theme of how the Bachelor or Bachelorette has been chosen the last 6 times I think it’s unfair that Casey had to be subject to that.

    Anyways, really great blog. I liked the seriousness of it. Can’t wait for next weeks!

    Comment by Courtney — February 10, 2012 @ 2:49 pm

  2. I really have to agree with you about Courtney…you explained it so well. I do know that she started very young as a model for Ambercrombie and Fitch and she has been modeling all of her life and I can bet you money that she never had much of a childhood. I’m sure she has had to compete with other girls all these years because that’s what a modeling career does to you unfortunately. Believe me I know…my sister has been a model for 5 yrs now. Well anyway…I think the competitive side of her came out in the Bachelor house with these other girls.
    Well done on your blog West…very impressive!

    Comment by Annie — February 10, 2012 @ 2:59 pm

  3. Carrying your analysis of Courtney a step further. There are definitely reasons she acts the way she does. There have been comparisons made with Michelle Money. But Michelle was no where near the person Courtney is. Michelle was the evil person in her ITM’s and it created quite an image for her. However, Michelle did not carry it to the extent Courtney has on a daily basis outside and beyond her ITMs. Producers can lead you with their questions and comments as they are producing the ITMs. But as you are walking thru the residence and responding to your housemates, it is all you. But with the reasons whatever they are, responsibility only falls one persons shoulders. The two students at Columbine HS had their issues and reasons also, but it sure as hell didnt make it right.

    As far as Casey S, from what I have read she had disclosed her past relationship the FIRST night. So she wasnt trying to hide it. And Ryan Seacrest had disclosed at the beginning of the season that Courtney had broken up with her boyfriend when she was approved for the season. So Courtney was a victim of the producers and Chris H. And her going the way she did created far more drama for them, than if she had not been given a rose.

    And Chris says in his blog that he felt it was his duty to make Ben aware of Casey’s situation. Ben was already aware of it, whether he could recall it or not. And what about Chris’s duty to the other 9 girls at the time. If anyone of the girls other than Courtney would have received the last rose, I’m sure you could picture the explosion there would have been.

    I would almost bet on it that when Ben walks down the streets of Sonoma in the future, it wont be as pleasant as it was before.

    Sorry for the rant, but ABC, the franchise and Chris H light my jets. I realize the past castmates hold Chris high. But damn, his rationalizatin sucks.

    Comment by Divr — February 10, 2012 @ 5:49 pm

  4. I usually look forward to your blog the most – but this week’s blog was way to PC. Boring.

    Comment by Sara — February 10, 2012 @ 6:05 pm

  5. Everyone who chooses to appear on reality TV craves attention, but most of them still behave with a lot more class and decency than Courtney does. If she wants to take her clothes off and have sex with a guy she barely knows on a show watched by millions of people, that is her business and all I can do is roll my eyes at her desperation. But there is no excuse for the rudeness with which she treats the other girls, period. Guys aren’t leaving her because she sleeps with them too soon; they’re leaving because she has nothing to offer besides sex. You can’t build a long-term relationship on nothing but sex and snark. Look at how rudely she refused Emily’s apology (which, in my opinion, was totally unwarranted and undeserved). Who would want to be in a relationship with someone so domineering and inflexible? Courtney has a textbook case of narcissistic personality disorder. People like that treat others like props that they can use to get what they want, not as fellow beings deserving of compassion and respect. If she and Ben stay together more than a few weeks (doubtful), she will eventually treat him the same way. She simply has a rotten personality. A shallow guy will make excuses for her if he wants to sleep with her, but not for long.

    Comment by Amy — February 10, 2012 @ 6:10 pm

  6. I think you are hilarious. I agree about Kacie B, and I only half agree about Courtney. Look up what her mother says about her and you will understand where she learned her behavior from. Though I don’t think anyone is born evil, I do believe that when someone shows you who they are – believe them.

    Even Jeffrey Dahmer and Ted Bundy have backstories that explains (NOT justifies) their behaviors; however, it doesn’t mean it makes them good people to be around. Though I in no way think Courtney is a serial killer (I hope), she does remind me of the Scorpion and the Frog story (can you guess which one she is?) and the story of the young woman and the snake (Google those cautionary tales if you’re not familiar with them). Changing behaviors is hard enough and take a long time – even when you recognize there is a problem and you want to change badly. Courtney thinks she’s “winning” and awesome, there’s no incentive there to change or reason for her to change. God help the person who tries to love her – it not going to end well w/ someone as narcissistic and entitled as her (I daresay w/ a borderline personality – one of the most dangerous personality disorders that even therapists are afraid to have them as clients).

    Comment by Celeste — February 10, 2012 @ 8:07 pm

  7. To Amy, your comments are spot on.

    Comment by Anna — February 11, 2012 @ 12:18 am

  8. I agree with Anna. Right on Amy! You said it all and saved me the effort!

    Comment by Marie — February 11, 2012 @ 4:53 am

  9. So, what happened with the best friend?

    Comment by bsheer — February 11, 2012 @ 8:24 am

  10. Right on Amy. Exactly

    Comment by Elizabeth — February 11, 2012 @ 2:07 pm

  11. I really enjoyed this blog.. it was very heartfelt and true, which I appreciate.. Thank you for your insight! Gave me a nice start to my day!

    Comment by Danica — February 13, 2012 @ 7:05 am

  12. West, I once told you that I wish I was 30 years younger. Screw that! WILL YOU MARRY ME? NOW!!! That was such a sensitive take on the Courtney issue and the others as well. I couldn’t help noticing that the only typo in your whole blogs to date was when you were talking about things not working out with you and your best girl friend. That says truck loads.

    To be honest, Courtney is beginning to grow on me as well. I just wish I could get those cute looks on my face!

    Comment by Sandy — February 13, 2012 @ 9:57 am

  13. Your theory on Courtney would work if she hadn’t been so cruel and heartless to Emily, both when Emily talked to Ben about Courtney’s shady behavior and when Emily tried to apologize for having done so. Neither of those incidents had anything to do with baiting her sexuality or seeking attention from boys.

    Comment by Joanna — February 13, 2012 @ 10:37 am

  14. HAHAHA that scene in Swingers. Yes. Jamie inspired identical feelings.

    Comment by Elizabeth — February 14, 2012 @ 5:07 pm

  15. Ben Flajnik storm horse cream dreams http://vixelyblog.wordpress.com/2011/07/26/exclusive-cream-dreams-video-by-ben-f-from-the-bachelorette/

    Comment by charles — February 15, 2012 @ 6:17 am

  16. West, you were so quiet on Ashley’s season that your personality didn’t shine through like it does when you are writing (too much law school, maybe, lol). I think JP is perfect for Ashley but I hope you find love again SOON. I know it was a joke on Ashley’s season because of Ben C.’s comments about on line dating but you should give it a try. I have friends who have meet their husbands through on line dating. Did you go to the Bachelor reunion? That would have been a great opportunity to meet single women (I hate how the shows calls adult women “girls”).

    You are now a public figure so, if you do find a girl-friend, you must let us know!

    Comment by Anne — February 15, 2012 @ 10:20 am

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