The Amazing Family-Destroyer

The other day, I had the TV on for background noise while I was doing some school-related drudgery, and on came The Amazing Race. Usually I’d flip real quick because I can’t stand all these quote unquote reality shows. Reality? Ok whatever. But I was too damned lazy to change the channel, so I left it on. As it ran in the background, I noticed something really disturbing. All these people are trying for a million dollars, right? To do it, they basically do a race around the world. Ok, gotcha.

But here’s where I get upset. Everybody’s trying to outdo the next guy in speed to get the dough. They’re stressed. They’re flipping out, planning, running around like loons. Even in the first step of the race, everyone has to get on 3 flights, all going to arrive in Iceland within 5 minutes of each other. But oh no we can’t just pick one, get on and relax. No no no. We have to turn this into a huge extravaganza of strategy and planning. Easy, it’s five minutes. They’re yelling at each other. There’s this one couple that, if I was serious about the show, I’d want to see gone pronto because they’re just way too negative, he is anyway. But then I think, “That poor woman has to go home with him.” But my point is while they’re bickering and screaming, freaking and fighting, they’re missing the opportunity of a lifetime! I mean, how many times are these people going to get to go to all these places? For sure, after that, they’ll never want to come back because it will just remind them of all the fighting they did, especially for those who don’t get the money, which is 10 teams out of 11!

And wanna know the irony of it all? Most of these people said they came on this thing to *strengthen* their relationship with their partner/friend/parent/whatever. Ya think a highly competitive, high-pressured, televised race for a million bucks is going to strengthen your relationship? Try going on a vacation together. Try doing something fun together. If this is going to do anything, it’s going to destroy what you have because it will bring out the worst in each of you. I mean this one guy kept telling his wife that he was starting to wish he’d brought someone else on the race! Another girl, while they had nothing else to do but drive, was commenting about how beautiful the sky was and how it reminded her of Scotland. Her boyfriend’s response? “We’re trying to win a race and you’ve got your thumb up your ass thinking about some place we’re not? About Scotland?” Chill out, bro. You’re in the car, going to your destination. Take it easy and enjoy the ride. Jesus.

I mean I hate reality shows anyway. But this one, especially this episode, just made me sad and made me think of how many people are probably missing the whole point of life just running around like chickens with their heads cut off. Chill out, people. If you’re ruining relationships to get where you want to go, it’s not worth it.

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