The Bachelor is less about the reality of love and more about ratings

I never thought I’d tune in to “The Bachelor”. Boy was I wrong.

On my weekly outings to see my grandmother, part of the evening is inevitably spent watching something on television (or the boob tube as she commonly refers to it).

Most of the time we’re tuned in to the popular game show “Wheel of Fortune” – where grams always comments on Vanna’s wardrobe and how she’d love to have her job. I don’t mind the show really – remembering how often I used to watch it as a kid during summer vacation.

But the other night she caught me by surprise when she asked if we could watch the season finale of “The Bachelor”. I wasn’t about to say no to a 90-year-old woman, even though I wanted to.

I knew she was a regular fan of the show, which is a surprise for someone her age, but we hadn’t been watching it on recent Monday night visits, which is when the show is on. But in between puzzle boards was a commercial advertising the finale and that was all the impetus she needed. And so there I found myself sipping a hot cup of tea, munching on some leftover cake, watching some guy whining about having to choose between two women he supposedly loved.

Not long into the show several questions came to mind. One, who would be willing to put themselves through such a public and oftentimes embarrassing scrutiny and two, how in the hell is it possible to fall in love so fast with more than one person?

Some 14 million people watched the season finale of this most recent edition of “The Bachelor” – ironically enough, me being one of them. But since when did falling in love become so entertaining to watch, and people so naïve to believe that what they see is real.

“The Bachelor” is nothing more than another reality program which takes all the “reality” out of life – in this case in finding your true love. Love is not a competition or a game featuring lavish travel destinations and fine dining on rooftops; imposing cameras and rose ceremonies. Though definitions vary, love has been defined as “a strong, complex emotion or feeling causing one to appreciate, delight in and crave the presence of another”.

It’s personal, simplistic and at times even ordinary. But it’s still one of the greatest feelings you’ll experience with another human being. Seeking the affections of a total stranger like competitors at an antiques auction only defaces an experience, which should only be filled with beauty.