November 2, 2005

Linda Ruiz

The dumbest family I ever saw


First, let me say that I really think this season has some potential now! Wasn’t last night’s episode great?

The teams started off at the Panama Canal, where last week’s victors, the Paolos (yay!) led the pack. The bickering literally began instantly, with DJ threatening to kick someone in the head if they start fighting (haven’t you already “started” fighting, if you say that?). Oh DJ, you’re all talk – but we all heard your girly-scream last week. I’m sure Marion could take you down!

Next stop: San Jose, Costa Rica! No aeroplano this time, but at least it’s not San Jose, California.

The Weavers were up next. One of the booty-shorts-loving girls told us: “we were raised not to trust anyone but our family and God.” Hmm, that explains a lot.

The Weavers heard the other teams talking about them, but it doesn’t matter because (hypocrisy drumroll please...) they’re Christian, and they’re “above all that.” Yeah sure, they would never call the Paolos “retards,” or make fun of the fact that Mr. Paolo is a garbage man, or say that Brian Paolo “looks like a squirrel,” or say that they hope the Godlewski’s boobs “cost a lot because they never wear a bra.” Because they’re above all that.

I am also above using conditioner. Jesus didn’t need conditioner!!

One of the Linz boys came up with a brilliant strategy for this leg: “hey guys, let’s get first this time!” Duh, why didn’t they think of that before? It’s much better than the Gaghan’s dumb “just pass one team each week” strategy. No wonder the Linz family is America’s pick to win it all!

Side Note: Why do my two favorite teams, the Godlewskis and the Paolos, have the lowest two scores of any of the remaining teams in the CBS popularity poll? What is wrong with you, America? How can 16% of you love the Weavers, but only 7% love the Paolos and 3% love the Godlewskis? I’ve voted about 50 times, but seriously, I only have so much free time on my hands. I’m a busy woman (as you can tell from my 75 paragraph recap). Help me out! It’s your civic duty, people!

Speaking of the ladies luck, since last week was a non-elimination leg, the peppy posse of pink was forced to begin this segment without any money. Remind me why they do this again? I think it’s kind of pointless. The only time it ever really matters is if a team starts off broke in Africa at 2:00 am and needs to get a cab. But four blond ladies hunting for cash in Central America isn’t much of a challenge.

The Gaghans were off and running, too, and despite Carissa’s idea to run all the way to Costa Rica (600 miles at 7 minutes per mile = only 70 hours. Wheels, WHEELS, WHEELS!!!), they opted to take the bus like everyone else.

Apparently the Weaver-hate is now unanimous. The Paolos got to the bus station first and began directing all of the other teams to the ticket counter in an effort to help other teams get there before Team Florida. Nevermind that it was pointless, because all the teams were going to be bunched together again at the (stupid) volcano. It was still fun.

Weaver-hate-fever didn’t stop the pink ladies from hitting the disoriented disciples up for cash, though, and the Weavers obliged (suckers!).

Jesus says to give me some ceaaaash.

Michelle assured her sisters that they would “backstab” them later. Ha! Didn’t I say Michelle was awesome (and gorgeous)?

Fast forward to Costa Rica, and we heard a new nickname from the Weavers: “The Brady Bunch.” Since there were no teams of 3 boys, 3 girls, their parents and a maid, I couldn’t figure out who they were talking about. Did anyone else understand it? Hmm, well, who cares. It probably made about as much sense as calling the Paolos “The Cleavers,” anyway.

The Weavers and Gaghans got lost for a bit, but a quick prayer followed by some angelic heavenly music and they found the way. Oh you zany sound editors, pulling out the old Brandon & Nicole effects. I love it.

But when they arrived at Heaven, aka the (stupid) volcano, the gates were closed. Oooh, a Christian metaphor. That’s deep. I think. I don’t know, I just don’t like them.

The stress of the Race drove Rachel to start smoking.

The Gaghan kids got in some shuteye on the way to Mount Stupid.

Proof that Carissa Gaghan is not a robot. Unless she is a very cute, sleepy robot.

Once the gates opened, all of the teams ran to the volcano to grab the next clue. The Weavers were unimpressed, as someone from their car exclaimed “that was the dumbest volcano I ever saw.” (And she has seen plenty of volcanoes, trust me!) To which Carissa replied, “um, have you seen your Mom?” Oh no she DIDN'T!!! Actually, she didn’t. Robo-Carissa was still snoring away in the van, but you know she dreamed it.

I guess I shouldn’t assume it was one of the Weaver daughters who called the volcano stupid. Maybe she was in the car. “Bitch, please! I don’t care about no crappy volcano!”

The clue directed the families to drive 17 miles to the Doka Estate coffee plantation.

Mmmm. A coffee waterfall!

The Weavers needed a little help with directions, because they weren’t sure if they should go “righto” or “lefto.” Yeah, that volcano was a total dumbass.

Caution, Yield ahead! Oh YAY!! Of course, everyone wanted to yield the Weavers, but the Paolos made it there first, so they got to do the honors.

This week’s road-blaaaahck was my absolute favorite type of TAR challenge. The “needle in a haystack” challenge, if you will. Some teams zip through it rapido, and others not so much. Frustration abounds, and more importantly, teams can truly make up (or lose) a LOT of ground here. Personally, I think this is what has been (mostly) missing from this season – challenges that really have the potential to shake up the order. But this one did.

The teams had to choose one member to hunt through a pile of 800 pounds of coffee beans to find the single red bean. The Godlewskis clarified the instructions for Tricia: “you have to look and see which one looks different.”

OMGaaad, I figured it out, girls! You have to find the one that looks different! Shhhh… don’t tell anyone!

Fortunately for Bransen Girl, her early-onset osteoporosis was an advantage in this task.

Later, the Weavers arrived to find out that the Paolos had Yielded them, and let’s just say they weren’t very “Christian” in their reaction.

Oh by the way, did you know that when the Schroeder’s home was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina, all of the families offered help except for one? Yeah, they’re “above all that” helping thy neighbor stuff. (via Reality Blurred)

Although I was hoping the Weavers would get stuck at the bean hunt, it was Tammy Gaghan that had a really hard time, forcing them to scramble to try to catch up afterwards.

Tammy will never drink coffee again.

At the detour, this week’s choice was between ripe and relic. “Ripe” involved hauling humongous bushels of bananas and transporting them by pulley. In “relic,” teams had to traverse a bunch of scary footbridges in the rainforest to find ancient Mayan relics.

The Paolos opted for the bananas, and thanks to the physical prowess of “frickin monster” Tony, they finished quickly. The other teams chose, instead, to go relic-hunting.

Trying desperately to make up some ground, the Gaghans scoured the rainforest for ancient relics as quickly as possible. Carissa thought she spotted one first:


Alas, it was only Gary from Survivor. Close, but no cigar.

Over in Quepos, the pit stop for this leg of the race, it was an intense footrace to the finish. “NO PAIN, MA!” DJ yelled, encouraging Marion to keep going. “I can’t do dis no more!” she moaned, but she did, and their first place victory earned each member of the family their choice of four vehicles that Marion would look equally hilarious riding. Seriously, I want to go to Carmel, NY just to see her whizzing around town on her Segway.


The Linz, super-smelly-Bransen, and Godlewski families followed behind in 2nd, 3rd, and 4th place, respectively. We knew the Gaghans were out of it when they arrived at the detour as the Weavers were leaving, but we had a brief glimmer of hope as the Weavers’ van got stuck in the mud.

Sadly, my prayers weren’t answered, probably because Jesus was backlogged with similar requests, like getting Jim fired on The Apprentice: Martha Stewart, or bringing back Paradise Hotel. Seriously, I think Jesus should consider hiring an Assistant Savior to respond to all of these reality-related prayers.

Ultimately, the Weavers finished in fifth place, and it was the Gaghan family that was sent home this week.

So what did everyone else think? Were you sad to see the Gaghans go? Are the Weavers as annoying as I think they are, or am I being too hard on them? Is this season getting better, or do all of you still hate it?

Posted by Linda Ruiz in Recap corner on November 2, 2005 1:35 PM


Love you Linda. However, the nasty Paolo son's name is DJ. The younger one is Brian. And I'm a fan of this family. Just wanted to correct this for future updates.

Posted by: Helen B. at November 2, 2005 4:19 PM

Oops, you're right, Helen! With so many people this season, it's so hard to remember who is who...

Posted by: Linda at November 2, 2005 4:23 PM

I was totally sad to see the Gaghan's go! And when Carissa started to cry, I almost did too. But...I...I didn't. =|

IDK about the Weavers. I like them. I thought it was stupid and hypocritical that they laughed at the Paolo's posing in front of a garbage truck. =\ But I still like them.

Posted by: Ken at November 2, 2005 4:53 PM

Are you too hard on the Weavers? Absolutely NOT... they deserve every last bit of criticism people can come up with. "Oooh they're standing in front of the garbage truck" Big frickin deal guys! In my life I don't think I have ever seen a bigger bunch of hypocrites. And that part about not trusting anybody except their family and god...was just...(expletive deleted)

Posted by: Andrew at November 2, 2005 6:13 PM

Gary was the best part of your article.

But I am starting to actually like the Paulos
which I never thought possible, but Weaver is crazy.

Posted by: John at November 3, 2005 12:07 AM

I was very sad to see the Gaghans go, but really they should have let Billy look for the red coffee bean since he is so close to the ground!

On another note, I swear I'm going to post something soon, Linda. I promise!

Love, Karen

Posted by: Karen at November 3, 2005 12:19 AM

I love you glad i found this site via a Cdn tv site

I agree wholeheartly...don't know who are the Bradys - bransens? gaghans? noblended families?
Cleavers...they have no nyc ties
Desperate housewives - are all the godlewski sisters even married?

the righto and leftos...mrs weaver take courses from mirna and charla's school of spanisho...gee,they live in florida....

Posted by: shirley at November 3, 2005 9:46 AM

I think the Weaver's were really rude about the whole "garbage truck" thing but other than that they are one of my favorite teams (next to the Linz's) Rolly is soo hott! I thought that the Paolo's were really annoying and I am soo glad that they're gone..all of this is my opinion please don't take it offencivly..

Posted by: KiWi at November 14, 2005 8:27 PM

I loved when you said "the old Brandon and Nicole effects." I can imagine Linda Weaver praying and then the camera view changes to the sky.

They could definitely use some language lessons as Shirley suggested. Charla and Mirna were top of the list, remembering that they speak Armenian, Turkish, French and Spanish fluently.

Posted by: Simon at November 30, 2005 7:27 PM

i think that the whole garbage truck thing was...harsh...but i still like the Weavers but i not sure why...and i TOTALLY AGREE WITH KiWi...rolly is very hott though hes kinda quiet!!:P anyways this amazing race season was boring until they went OUTSIDE of the US. Now, i dont live in the USA, but i must admit it was getting quite really happy i found this website...its fun reading all the comments made by u guys and reading all the comments!

Posted by: kels at December 20, 2005 9:56 PM

These recaps are great. found your site off of google. great job, and thanks for taking me down memory lane and for the support and kind things you've said about my family... and if anybdy wants to send us to new zealand, please do! (you'll have to pay though, lol)

-Brian Paolo-

Posted by: Brian at May 14, 2006 1:40 AM

It's been a long time since I so enjoyed reading posts in the net. Two thumbs up! bad, astonishing, superb nothing comparative to collective

Posted by: right gnome will roll soldier without any questions at July 20, 2006 7:31 AM