There’s no way that I can write about tonight’s episode of The Amazing Race without talking about the terrible and tragic events that happened in Paris earlier on November 13th. As I sit here typing this, over 140 people have been confirmed dead in a series of terrorist attacks. France is in a state of emergency and I think that we are all in a state of shock.
Myself, I’ve always loved France. When I visited France the summer after graduating high school, I was struck by the beauty of both the countryside and the cities. And, despite what we are constantly told, the majority of French citizens that I met were very friendly and very polite.
As I watched the latest episode of The Amazing Race, I could not help but think about that post-graduation trip to Europe. One of the wonderful things about the Amazing Race is that it truly spans the globe. Yes, the ultimate goal is to win and not be eliminated and yes, there have been more than a few racers who have acted like stereotypical ignorant tourists but, for me, the best parts of the Race are the moments racers stop obsessing over the money and instead, just appreciate the world around them. The Amazing Race reminds us that the world can be a beautiful place and that was something about which we needed to be reminded tonight.
Tonight’s leg of The Amazing Race saw the racers traveling from The Netherlands to Poland. From the start of this leg to the end, it was pretty obvious that Tanner and Josh were going to come in last. They simply had no luck during this leg of the race. From the minute they couldn’t find a taxi, I was dreading the thought of them being eliminated.
Fortunately, they were not. When they reached the pit stop, they were informed that this was a non-elimination leg of the race. I was so happy that Tanner and Josh were not eliminated but you know what? If they had been eliminated, they could have left with their heads held high. So far, they have run an honorable race and that continued tonight. Even knowing that it could lead to them being eliminated, they worked with the cheerleaders at the final road block. And when it came time to show off that tray of food and get the final clue that would lead them to go to the roadblock, they allowed the cheerleaders to go first.
Because the cheerleaders were there first and they felt it was the right thing to do.
Along with Tanner and Josh potentially sacrificing their race for the cheerleaders, the other big moment of Friday’s episode was when each team visited the offices of Oskar Schindler and reflected on his legacy. Some of these racers I like more than others but still, it was touching to see how moved all of them were by the experience. And it served to remind us that, in ways both large and small, there is still kindness in this world. There are still good people.
Finally, here’s a few thoughts on how each team did tonight, in order of when they reached the pit stop:
Coming in first, Justin and Diana. Justin and Diana are starting to look like they might be unstoppable. There’s a U-turn in the next leg of the race and Justin and Diana better hope they reach it before everyone else.
Coming in second, Kelsey and Joey. 8 legs into the race and Kelsey and Joey remain both as strong and as boring as they were when the race began.
Coming in third, Denise and James Earl. *Sigh* You know what? Every episode, I predict that Denise and James Earl are going to be eliminated. Every episode, I’m wrong. So, this episode I am going to predict that Denise and James Earl are going to win the Amazing Race. Maybe that’ll get rid of them…
Coming in fourth, Logan and Chris. Yep, the battling paparazzi are still there. I’m as shock as anyone.
Coming in fifth, Tiffany and Krista. I love the cheerleaders but they got a little bit whiny during this episode. (Then again, it’s easy to judge when you’re just sitting at home and watching. If I had been in the same situation — having to beg for money and then having to carry around a heavy tray — I probably would have been crying up a storm.) Hopefully, they will recover and be a lot stronger during the next leg.
Coming in sixth, Tanner and Josh! Thank God it wasn’t a double eviction. After being one of the early front runners, Tanner and Josh have really been struggling lately. They’re a strong team but they have the worst luck. Here’s hoping that things look up for them during the next leg!
Next episode, it’s U-turn time! Who will be make it and who will be eliminated?