Nov 10, 2011, Ep 7: What Went Wrong

The Amazing Race 19 Secret Scenes, Episode 7:  What Went Wrong

Justin & Jennifer (pictured) certainly had a horrible leg and in a few of these videos, they explain what happened and how much (or little) it matters.  What about Laurence & Zac’s wasted U-Turn?  Of course, it’s not really Laurence’s fault, if you listen to his explanation.  And what about Ernie & Cindy’s decision to not use the U-Turn?  Their answer is probably as frustrating to you as it was to me!  Read on for this and more, like Jeremy & Sandy’s never-ending communication problem!

Extra Race Footage

Featured Team:  Amani & Marcus

Puzzling Problem:  In their cab leaving the Roadblock, Amani admits that the slide puzzle took a lot longer than it should have.  Marcus agrees and reflects that they then had to solve the puzzle in the other orientation as it had been upside-down.  Amani actually likes those slide puzzles and has played with them a lot in her life and Marcus knows that.  It’s why he let her take the lead on the puzzle.  Her frustration was that she just couldn’t get that one open green area right.  Apparently there were lots of bystanders offering suggestions and that was too much armchair-quarterbacking for Marcus.  He didn’t want to hear it after a while as it wasn’t helping.

Featured Team:  Amani & Marcus

Malawi Meets Expectations:  In another cab, Amani reflects that Malawi is a lot of what they expected it to be:  beautiful people, hard workers, and simplicity.  In our age of technology that we live in, Amani found it refreshing to go back to a simpler way.  In Malawi people ride bicycles and walk to work and there are few cars.  Marcus finds that it is indeed simple here but it is still quite meticulous.  They know how to do things efficiently while if we had to get groceries and bring our kids from point A to point B, would we be able to do so as effectively as they can in Malawi?  He reasons that the people here have to be creative and calculating in order to survive.

Featured Team:  Justin & Jennifer

What Went Wrong:  As they speed to the Detour in their cab, Jennifer explains that she had been in a group at the Roadblock including Sandy, Cindy & Laurence.  When she got to her destination on the bicycle, she realized she didn’t have the clue and didn’t know what it was she had to do next.  She decided to wait around and see if she could find someone else who had their clue and ask to see it.  After heading back and forth on the street a few times and not seeing another team for a while, she decided to ride back.  She understands that even if that had been the wrong move, she should have come to that decision a lot sooner.

Jennifer found riding a bicycle with a passenger to be a wobbly experience.  When she thinks about it, that sums up a lot of her race experience as she’s had multiple wobbly bikes now.  She feels very bad for two reasons, one being that she didn’t bring the clue with her and for taking so long to make that decision to come back to Justin.   During this whole time, Justin stares out the window.  I’m imagining it’s to process his rage and frustration, as that’s probably what I’d be trying to do too.  

Featured Team:  Andy & Tommy

Coolest Pit Stop:  Andy & Tommy are talking to us from the starting point of this leg, which is at the the collection of huts they slept in overnight.  Andy thinks it’s the coolest Pit Stop they’ve been to so far.  There was great African dancing and interesting instruments, which Andy was astounded to discover were all homemade.  There was a bass that at one point had been a drum, but was transformed.  Tommy loved all the culture as well as getting to sleep in the little huts on the beds they carried.  Andy found it to be romantic and then giggles because he mentions there weren’t any wives around.

Featured Team:  Bill & Cathi

Cathi’s Taxi Service:  In their cab away from the Roadblock, Bill brags on Cathi as he realizes that she was third to complete the bicycle task.  Cathi noticed that Amani & Marcus were just getting started as she returned and Bill informs her that they had to do a puzzle first before starting.  Bill erroneously describes how the Speed Bump puzzle worked (that it was a Rubik’s Cube style puzzle) but he only heard about it second-hand.  Cathi tells us that riding the bike was initially challenging with a passenger but once you got it going, the bike was heavy enough to keep from falling over.  Only one time did she have to walk the bike as there was one hill she just couldn’t make it up.  She notes that her passenger was very stoic and never said one word to her.

At the Pit Stop

Featured Team:  Bill & Cathi (third place)

Still Surviving:  Phil is happy to be surprised by Bill & Cathi’s third-place finish.  He’s amazed they look as confident as they ever have.  Cathi admits she was thrilled with the bicycle Roadblock as that is her specialty.  Phil asks if they find the Final Three to be a truly attainable goal now that they’re doing so well.  Cathi tells him that it started off as just “survive the day” and as the race progresses, they notice the other teams making crucial mistakes.  Those errors have given them confidence in their own strong performance.  They trust in each other to get things done right.

Phil bets that Bill & Cathi’s performance in the race is inspiring as they’re doing well and out-performing much younger teams.  Cathi admits that they definitely had a lot to overcome in terms of cultural and physical limitations but that the hardest things is what you don’t see as a viewer: the lack of sleep and recovery.  The stress of not knowing what’s next is also challenging and causes worry but what Cathi happily reports is that typically their worries are for naught as the challenges are do-able.  

Phil points out that it seems Bill & Cathi’s biggest strategy or advantage is in the mental realm.  They might not be able to take on the other teams physically (although both Bill & Cathi are in fantastic shape for their age!), their mental edge is where they can come out ahead.  Although let’s not think about that first leg in Taiwan, shall we?  Phil humorously asks if they’re still in love which prompts a Pit Stop smooch.  Phil is relieved and asks how many years they’ve been married.  Cathi tells him that it’s been 41 years but Bill points out they dated for 8 years before that.  Phil wonders what their secret is and Cathi tells him it’s communication.  Both admit that there is definite patience on both sides too.  

Featured Team:  Jeremy & Sandy (sixth place)

Another Tough Leg:   Phil mentions that he knows that Jeremy & Sandy really want to be here.  He is curious who wants it more.  Sandy responds that they both want it equally and that they are just getting frustrated along the way.  Phil asks where the frustration is coming from and Sandy tells him they just keep making mistakes.  Today on the Roadblock she ended up bicycling in the wrong direction for a few miles and then on the Roadblock, she & Jeremy screamed at each other as they couldn’t figure out how to paddle the kayak correctly.

Jeremy adds that they were doing the best they could, but it was just a hard leg.  They tried to work together but they just kept going in circles.  Phil asks if they think they’re as competitive as they were at the beginning of the race.  Jeremy emphatically insists that isn’t the case which surprises Sandy.  He thinks that if anything, they’re even more competitive.  

Featured Team:  Justin & Jennifer (last place)

What Happens Next:  Phil asks if Justin & Jennifer can still make an impact on the world even without the million dollar prize.  Jennifer starts to answer but admits she’s about to get emotional, which she immediately does.  She tells Phil that she is excited for her students to see what she’s done and all the lessons that she can create based on the people and locations she visited.  Even without a million dollars, she can instill a drive in her students to want to learn and see the world for themselves.

Phil notes that Justin & Jennifer’s motivations were all about giving to others.  He wonders where that comes from.  Justin explains that their parents were always supportive of them and instilled that kind of mindset in them their whole life.  They were always encouraged by their parents to achieve their dreams.  Their time on The Amazing Race was just more proof of that.  Their travels on the race have fulfilled many of their goals and dreams and they’ve met a lot of cool people.  

Phil asks Jennifer what she hopes to teach her students about the diversity in the world.   She wants to show them that everyone has the same needs and wants and that everyone loves and takes care of their families and communities.  Additionally she just wants to show how big the world really is and that we’re all human.  Justin agrees wholeheartedly with Jennifer and is appreciative of the experience.  He thinks that experiencing the world via the race is a special way to really get an appreciation of how unified the world can be.

After the Race

Featured Team:  Laurence & Zac

A Wasted U-Turn:  Laurence admits that they should have put more thought into the use of the U-Turn.  He wants us viewers to realize that there’s a lot we don’t understand or see when watching as he & Zac were exhausted.  In that brief time given to decide on the U-Turn, there isn’t always enough time or info to make the smartest decision.  It looks a lot easier watching it on TV than it actually is in reality.  This leg was a lot of hard work, which Zac agrees with.  Laurence enjoys all that hard work as it feels like an achievement.  Way to not admit that you just messed up.

Featured Team:  Ernie & Cindy

A Glimmer of Hope:  Cindy points out that Andy & Tommy have now won five of the seven legs of this season so far.  Ernie finds a silver lining in that fact as of those five wins, three of them were by default when other teams messed up, whether it was not giving all the money to the orphanage or not paying a driver.  Ernie thinks that means that the Snowboarders aren’t unbeatable.  Cindy wisely notes that what it does highlight is that Andy & Tommy don’t make mistakes, which makes them a strong team.

Concerning the U-Turn and not using it, Cindy says that they wanted to win this leg fairly.  Ugh, I hate when teams say this.  The U-Turn is a valid and fair game element. Use it!  Tangent over.  Ernie didn’t want to have to live with using the U-Turn on another team and then having that team look at them.  It would weigh heavily on his conscience and the team may not get eliminated and now you’ve just got a vengeful team to contend with.  Don’t you already?  The other teams aren’t here to support each other.  Arrghh!  Another interjection by me:  Who cares what the other teams think?  You’re not supporting each other anyway.  Second tangent over.   Ernie fears retribution and a U-Turn being used back on them later on down the line.  Cindy just likes Andy & Tommy and thinks they’re nice guys and fun to be around.  Really??? With a million dollars at stake, I don’t care how friendly my competition is!

Featured Team:  Jeremy & Sandy

Rough Waters:  Sandy reports that while she doesn’t have much canoeing experience, apparently Jeremy does.  She didn’t know how to steer and wanted some direction from Jeremy but he just wasn’t able to give it.  Jeremy sighs and tells us that he doesn’t have that much experience but he does know that if two people are rowing on the same side of the boat, you’re going to go in a circle.  He couldn’t turn around to see what she was doing and while he tried to give instruction, he was also rowing as hard as he could too.  Jeremy admits that it’s hard to stay nice in such frustrating circumstances.

Sandy points out to us that she’s been watching the other teams and hasn’t noticed one other team that yells at each other.  She’s surprised because all the other teams seem so calm.  Is it just them?  Sandy laughs at this and Jeremy chimes in that they’re just both very impatient people.  Combine that impatience with foreign situations and it’s ugly.  Jeremy is sure that Bill & Cathi, having been together for decades, have canoed together at one point.  He & Sandy have never canoed together.  They both point out they’ve never even been in bodies of water together.  Hence it’s been even more of a challenge when you don’t have that familiarity with the other.   The other teams seem to have that advantage already, whether it’s siblings, spouses, family or best friends.  It’s a disadvantage and something they can learn from but it definitely is an obstacle to overcome.

Featured Team:  Justin & Jennifer

Siblings Say Goodbye:  Justin tells us that he understands where Jennifer is coming from and how she’s feeling with regards to her failure at the Roadblock.  If he had done the same thing and caused their elimination after having just been in second place, he’d be upset too.  But, the only thing that could have made it different was if he had done the Roadblock instead.  Who knows what may have happened then so it is what it is.  Justin is fine with how it all ended up and isn’t regretting anything that happened.  He knows that Jennifer will get over it eventually.

Jennifer admits that the experience was trying for both of them from the start.  They had to learn what the other person needed as the race progressed, and while it was hard to overcome that hurdle, it was well worth it.  She wouldn’t have wanted to do this with anyone else and she enjoyed her time immensely.  Jennifer got a chance to get pushed beyond her comfort zone and appreciates the entire experience.  Even more, this experience has helped highlight what she wants to do back at home, such as running.  It’s ludicrous to run 50 feet and get winded.  Jennifer wants to take better care of herself.  Her endurance got better but she has higher goals for herself now.

Hobie Barnes lives in Santa Monica, California after enjoying the hectic Manhattan life for 3 or so years.  He just got back from traveling in Turkey, Italy & Greece and can’t wait to see if the places he visited end up on this season of the race.  When not busy fighting the 405 and 101 freeways on the commute to Burbank, he is patiently waiting for an Amazing Race or Survivor scout to cast him!  He can be reached at <a href=”mailto:hobiewan76@gmail.com”>hobiewan76@gmail.com</a>.

 

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