An Affair of the Hartsock: Episode Two

Chris Harrison rallied the troops, asked about the 10 star accommodations, and announced Des would be by later in the morning to pick up her first one-on-one date. He then took unnecessary time to explain how the process works before leaving the first date card:

"Brooks, I'm waiting for a sign..."
He was "so pumped" to hang out with this "ball of mystery." Des=ball of mystery, I'm guessing.
Back at the bachelorette mansion Des spent her morning casually drawing and applying lipgloss.
She drove up to the bachelor mansion in her signature BlueBentley and doled out hugs to everyone before waving goodbye as she left with Brooks...and I half expected her to hit a potted plant on the way out the drive
They romantically yelled at each other as they speed down the highway because stuff like wind doesn't really exist on the bachelorette. Des took Brooks to a wedding dress store because that's a totally casual and not a psycho-crazy first date at all. Des tried on different dresses while Brooks modeled tuxes. They left their store with the signature clothes (hoping they paid first) and headed to a...cake cart to choose their wedding cake? 
Des maneuvered BlueBentley on a dirt road (I get the feeling it doesn't have 4-wheel drive) and the date progressed to the Hollywood sign with a backpack accessory that totally clashed with her dress. Brooks' personality won me over, but his hair is kind of a dealbreaker.
The sun sets, Brooks tosses his hair out of his eyes, and loudly kisses Des.
Once leaving the California landmark, Des got lost in a shady part of town BUT OH WAIT SHE'S NOT LOST SURPRISE THERE'S A CHANDELIER HANGING ON A BRIDGE AND IT'S COMPLETELY PLANNED. Didn't see that one coming...did Brooks really think he was going home without dinner?
The meal got incredibly awkward really fast when Des asked Brooks about his parents' divorce right on the heels of talking about her parents' perfect marriage. He pushed past the faux pas and shared with Des about his family.
Brooks accepted the rose and they danced on a Persian rug to the musical stylings of Andy Grammer.
Des mused, "Can it GET any better than this?" But of course it can, honey, you've only kissed 1 out of the remaining 18 men!

"Dan, Juan Pablo, Zach, Mikey, Zak, Michael, Brandon, Ben, Kasey, James, Michael, Brian, Drew  (other insignificants who I'm forgetting)....who's here for the right reasons?"
The dumbest person on the date card rejoiced, "we're gonna get to hang out with Des and not each other all day, so cheers!" Hey, headless voice, you do realize this is a GROUP date right?
Let's get something straight, when you think Desiree Hartsock, you think "gangsta rap," correct? I know I do. Apparently ABC agreed, because this voliate group made rap video with Soulja Boy.
The whole process was a cacophony of outfit changes and jokes about past seasons and contestants, but just imagine the whitest guys in America creating a rap music video to poor lyrics and you've nailed the scene.
If you must see it for yourself, look below.
I personally think Chris Harrison stole the show. 

The cocktail party following the date let the guys drown their embarrassment in alcohol and fight over time with Des.
Zak proved he did not lose his luggage by wearing a shirt and by presenting her with an antique journal. Which is actually SUCH a badass and thoughtful gift.
Brandon's face grew increasingly red in various corners.
Ben rambled about his kid and managed to kiss Des.
Brandon continued to sulk in the shadows.
Ben and Mikey had a tense, testosterone-fueled conversation.
Brandon finally mustered the courage to share his heartrending life story by a crackling fire. I think he may be too needy for Des. I'm especially scared for his heart since he has "fallen in like," on a group date, no less.
The bad guy we love to hate, Ben, accepted the group date rose "with pleasure." Does he work at ChickFilA? I was an "entrepreneur" too, in that case.

Bryden, the military hero, got the final one-on-one date of the week. Des pulled up to the mansion in BlueBentley and honked to announce her arrival. Bryden came running like a faithful dog and they jetted off on a roadtrip, stopping first at a classy gas station to gather some snacks for the drive.
First stop was El Matador beach where they unsuccessfully flew kites and sat on the same side of a picnic table to eat fish tacos. I judged.
Next was Orange Grove where they pick fruit and Bryden confessed that he doesn't know what Brie is. Oy.
After running through the orange trees, the camera cut to Ojai so I'm assuming they finished up the journey on foot.
By the time they arrived to their snazzy hotel dinner destination, it was dusk. I'm just doing some simple math...but if it took them all day to drive there and the date still isn't over...then didn't Bryden TECHNICALLY get the first overnight date? I just really need some answers as to who slept where that night.
At dinner, Bryden shared his own sob story about a tragic accident during his freshman year of high school. Des really has a banner crop this year. Bryden, who I've decided looks better in the daytime, accepted Des' rose. They took their date to the pool (it had to have been around 10 PM then, there's no way they drove back! Seriously, ABC, explain yourself) and exchanged pleasantries about how awesome and nice the day had been. I experienced heavy second hand embarrassment that culminated in a duck behind a couch cushion when Des demanded, "just kiss me already."

Thank God that's over. Des made her entrance to the pre-rose ceremony cocktail party in a sheath of sparkly seaweed. Between her hot pink tank top, attention-grabbing boots, and shiny dresses, Des doesn't really do understated.
Michael shared his struggles with Type 1 diabetes while Des put on her pity face for at least the 4th or 5th time that week. Bad Guy Ben interrupted. He already had a I frowned upon his ego taking up more of Des' time.  
So did Michael, and he and Ben gestured angrily in the mansion driveway. There was speculation about Ben's motives among the men. The drama of the week ended in a really anti-climactic "agree to disagree" situation.
Chris Harrison cut the tension with a "clinkclinkclink" and Des began to pass out roses. Ben, Bryden, and Brooks smiled at Des with pre-pinned confidence. James, Kasey, Dan, Juan Pablo, Brad, Chris, Brian, Zak, Drew, Mikey, Zach, Michael, and Brandon: in the words of Stephanie Tanner, "pin a rose on YOUR nose."
Will (the African-American yoga enthusiast), Robert (the sign-spinning skateboarder), and Nick (the one who I know nothing about) are the weakest links. They also don't have "B" names. Des has a type. 
The remaining group of men toasted to "the right reasons" and ABC cut to the funfest of next week. Kissing, peeping Toms, tank tops, emergency vehicles, oh my! Methinks Des may not be A Very Lucky Girl. 


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