Riding Coattails: Mangia This!


“I like meatballs.”
–Donald Trump

He’s really a modern day philosopher. And I’m sure that the remaining candidates on The Apprentice are eternally grateful to Trump for deigning to throw a few crumbs of wisdom toward the hem of his garment so that they might gobble them up like a bunch of pigeons in Central Park. I mean, when the Donald revealed his favorite pizza topping, I certainly raced for a pen and wrote it down. Business advice like that is priceless.

It’s no secret that I find Donald Trump completely repugnant. And the fact that so many people want to work for him kind of blows my mind. I guess I don’t crave money and power the way a lot of folks do. In fact, I was thinking about this the other day and I realized that if I had access to unlimited wads of cash, the only things I’d do differently would be to spend more time on white sand beaches, eat more often at restaurants with cloth napkins, and shop at Old Navy a little less. I could give a rat’s ass about cool cars, tricked out home entertainment systems, and $400 lowlights in my hair. That’s not to say that I don’t enjoy the finer things in life, because I do. I’ve eaten at the 21 Club and savored every amazing mouthful. I own leather pants and diamond earrings. But I tend to find most of my satisfaction in simple pleasures, like Scrabble and grilled cheese sandwiches.

And reality TV. I’m incredibly thankful that I can obtain just about everything I want without resorting to working for some rich prick who delights in playing verbal dodgeball and belittling everyone around him. And if others don’t feel the way I do and want to showcase the abuse that they take from this clown on national television, I want to watch. I mean, the Donald is entertaining, but it’s not all about him. Throw in a scandal over chewing tobacco, a few bleeped out F words, and an NYC subway virgin and you’ve got yourself a good show, baby.

Chris was undoubtedly the star of this week’s episode. I gasped in horror when I saw a big lump in the side of his cheek at the beginning of his task. Surely the boy would not throw away the chance to work with his older evil twin by breaking his promise to quit chewing tobacco! It was a nice gag on the part of the editors, immediately cut to a smiling shot of Chris holding a plastic cup, explaining that he was chomping down sunflower seeds. He still looked like a chipmunk preparing for winter, but it was an improvement. I was surprised that he didn’t take Angie’s suggestion to go get some nicotine gum to prevent any unnecessary crabbiness during the pizza task.

Surprised, but not disappointed. Because the drama that unfolded, whether the result of nicotine withdrawal, stress, or a loose screw, was truly excellent. Chris warned that he might be somewhat short with everyone as a result of recently kicking his habit, but Angie aptly pointed out, “You’re short on a good day.” Hear, hear. The fact that Chris is even still around amazes me, but I think that his staying power can be chalked up to some admirable self-defense in the board room. If nothing else, the kid has a knack for making someone else look worse even though he’s been the member of many losing teams, blows up in the boardroom, and makes very little effort to smooth over the waves he creates.

Not that he didn’t have some help in making waves this week. I believe that the Net Worth ship had already started to sink when Alex and Chris agreed to deliver six pizzas to construction workers in Brooklyn. It was an idiotic decision given that the team was going to be spending the day in Manhattan at their mobile Domino’s station. What was even dumber was that Stephanie decided to personally bring the pizzas by subway. I laughed out loud when she admitted that she’d never ridden the New York subway before, a fact that I find pathetic given the fact that she was a temporary resident of the town. Or maybe I was just jealous, being one of the countless peasants who must succumb to the mercies of this filthy, unpredictable maze every day.

Anyway, in Stephanie’s absence, Alex and Chris got in a fight which resulted in Chris repeating, three times, “Get the f@%k out of my face.” Alex took this as a hint that Chris was ready to deck him and later reported that news to Stephanie. In the boardroom, Trump laid into Stephanie for not being around when this incident occurred. But frankly, I don’t know what Stephanie could have done to diffuse the situation. There was a lot of testosterone swirling around in that truck and I just don’t think Stephanie would have been the best person to sooth the savagery. Maybe it would have helped if she’d paid some of the models to make out with Alex and Chris, but the team really couldn’t afford any extra expenses at that point.

Team Magna could have. Once again, with marketing magicians Tana and Kendra at the helm, the group deftly secured another win with their straightforward strategies. With the exception of some tension between Craig and Kendra, everyone appeared to be getting along well and working efficiently. I continue to be in awe of Tana, whose people skills are fantastic. She’s down-to-earth, friendly, not the least bit pretentious, and has a light-hearted approach to everything. I’ve noticed that the people who get into trouble on this show are the ones who start taking themselves too seriously (like Michael, Erin, Verna, Brian, Kristen, and Audrey). The fact that Tana can dive into her tenth task and stay positive is a testament to how kick-ass she is. Have I mentioned that I think she should win?

But she probably won’t, because the Donald likes to hire boys, and Tana, most definitely, is not one of those. When Trump fires her, I hope she looks straight at him, raises a well-manicured middle finger, and says, “Mangia this, butt boy.”