If I ever follow through on my threat to establish a consulting company for prospective contestants on The Bachelor, the first lesson will be a simple one: Put out. And then there will be several weeks of variations on that Golden Rule ("Put out quickly"; "Put out again, to remind him of the first put-out"; "Put out on the group date"; "Put out a little more on the solo date"; "Put out ALL THE WAY in the Fantasy Giving It Up Suite," and so on), but eventually, if the PayPal transmissions continue to go through, we'll eventually cover perhaps the most crucial advice of all:
No matter how acutely you feel him slipping away, no matter how convinced you are that he's forming a deeper and more meaningful relationship with the psychotic alleged model you think actually just had sex with him on that bamboo love seat in front of all the remaining girls, DO NOT SHOW HIM THE INSANE ROMANTIC SCRAPBOOK YOU JUST MADE.
This advice comes too late for poor Blakeley, the VIP cocktail waitress/semipro softball player/Hooters energy-drink-can model who violated that lesson so spectacularly last night in pulling Bachelor Ben aside for an emotional flip-through of her glue-sticked memories of their Special Time together. As she proudly presented the sixth-grade-quality collages of their various dates, you could almost hear Ben gasping in horror with the turn of each page, and it's a minor miracle he didn't interrupt her reverie to ask, "Hey, do you like limos?"
In fairness to poor, misguided, emotionally stunted Blakeley, the idea probably came from an evil producer who realized the extreme suggestibility brought on by her rose-craving desperation, and, grabbing her as she went back to refill her wine glass for the fifth time that hour, whispered conspiratorially, "I shouldn't be telling you this, but Ben just mentioned how much he'd love to get a bunch of pieces of construction paper with some meaningful magazine photos pasted to them, maybe with some colorful ribbon holding it all together." But my company will give even the most gullible of contestants the proper tools to deal with such chicanery. ("I'm not listening to you because I need to go put out now.")
On this sad Tuesday morning, let's all hope that future bachelorettes can learn from this mistake, so that Blakeley's regrettable, easily avoidable sacrifice will not have been in vain.