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Rockin’ the ‘Peg with Amazing Race Canada

Clue-presenter-and-Pinch-It-judge-Helen-Allan-with-JMGonna be a little weird this week. Gord is on vacation somewhere in BC so his post might be late. Also, there will be no video recap. And you may have noticed last week that Cory’s commentary wasn’t included. That’s because Cory was in the middle of a move and was busy, rightly so. He’ll be back this week; we’re just missing Gord. Boohoo.

On with the show. Last week, teams were in the Yukon and Alain and Audrey became the first team, besides the Olympians, to win a leg. Will they continue that? Or will the Twins, with their new Express Pass, move ahead? Will Sukhi and Jinder stay in the race? Will Mickey and Pete stop calling each other Dude. And finally, will Rob say something? Anything, please.

Alain and Audrey are off, heading to Winnipeg. They have to find the Golden Boy and get their next clue. In case you don’t know, the Golden Boy is on the top of the Manitoba Legislature. Pretty sure Gord knows this as well cause he’s smart and originally is from Winnipeg. Ryan and Rob head out after. And though Ryan speaks, Rob says nothing. Okay, I have to stop picking on him. They are followed by the Olympians and everyone else. To be honest, the Olympians may be a tough team but they are a bit flat as well.

Uh oh, there’s a bit about the Siblings having roots in Winnipeg. Not a foreshadowing I hope. But there’s a bit on Rex dancing in Winnipeg, maybe that’s it. Everyone’s on the same flight, chase for taxis, off to the Legislature, clue box, but it’s not opened till six. It’s a route market. Get to the Royal Canadian Mint, find 10 international coins the mint makes and match them with one of the flags outside.

Taxi, taxi. Sukhi thinks about looking at the map but the driver says he knows where he’s going. I’d check the map. Bunch of teams arrive, can’t see them there but it’s a fast cut. And yes, we get a shot of the Olympians explaining the task even though Jon just did that. A bit of redundant editing if you ask me. Countries are called out, someone says it’s hard. Sukhi and Jinder are lost. Uh oh.

Rob-and-Ryan-at-Royal-Canadian-MintCoins are placed, Olympians fail. Followed by everyone else. Another try and the Olympians are correct. Back in first place. Find your way to Portage and Main, the classic Winnipeg intersection. Find the clue. Sukhi and Jinder finally arrive. Uh oh, more background on them. Never a good sign. But despite arriving last, they get done second. I hope I’m wrong about this

And then we get a classic Canadian traffic stopper, the long train. That’s neat because we’ve all been there, done that. But if the cabbie was smart, he would know another route cause most Canadians should. I mean I do. Don’t you? More coins. Alain and Audrey and Rex and Bob are done. And really, we’re going to stop for commercial because of a train? I guess that’s dramatic. Not for me, but I’m only a crime novelist, what the heck do I know about drama?

Anyway, back to the mint and the three remaining boy teams are still working on it. Twins are done. Train, train go away. Finally it does. Portage and Main. Detour: Puck It or Pinch It? Hey? Jon’s a pretty good skater? But he’s a good ole, beer drinking Canadian boy, so he should be. Me too, been playing hockey since I was four, used to ref as well. Gord is a good ole (emphasis on ole) beer drinking Canadian boy but he’s not a good skater. But we’d still pick up Puck.

In Puck, they have to stickhandle and score five goals. Never thought the five-hole was the toughest, especially since the goalie can’t close the pads in this task In Pinch It, teams must locate St. Ivan Suchavsky’s Church and make 74 perfect perogies. I could eat 74 (what’s there reasoning behind 74? A question for the ages), but yep, hockey it is. No wait, there’s a a Fast Forward. Find the Cube in the Exchange District. No other explanation.

The girls pick Puck. Why not the Fast Forward? We’d be on that in a second. Doesn’t make sense they would pick that. Sure, hockey’s their thing but there’s probably another task afterwards. Best to do the one task instead of two, even one you’re good at. Bad move by the Olympians.

Clue-Card-perogiesDudes are done coins leaving Ryan and Rob behind. Sukhi and Jinder also forget the Fast Forward and take Puck. That sort of make sense because they think the Olympians would play it smart. Alain and Audrey think the same thing and also choose Puck.Girls get dressed on old school skates and head out. Basic stuff for them. Sukhi and Jinder show up and see the girls. If Gord and I were on the race, as soon as we saw that, we’d be out the door and heading to the Fast Forward. But nope, onto the ice, even though they’ve never skated in their life. “Why’d they choose that one?” asks my kid, echoing my sentiments exactly. Missed shot, missed shot. Should have done the Fast Forward.At the back, Ryan and Rob finally get the coins right. Rex and Bob do peroghies. Alain and Audrey arrive and exclaim simultaneously: “Nobody’s at the Fast ForwardQ” So they leave the rink in an instant. That’s the smartest move of the leg so far. The Twins and the Dudes choose hockey. Jinder gets a goal. And whoa, the Olympians are on shot 19 and still haven’t gotten the five hole yet. Epic, says Jinder.JM-The-Exchange-District-WinnipegAt the Fast Forward, Alain and Audrey must find seven vintage billboards and fill in missing words on a page. Done and off to the pitstop. It could take awhile but it’s only one task. And since no one else is there, they could get first place. Smart playing. The Bartenders decide to join Rex and Bob at the church. I’ve made perogies before and it’s just being patient. But tough. Alain and Audrey get out of the cab and search the signs on foot. Quickly they have three.

Back at hockey, 31 shots and still no five hole for the Olympians. The Twins are okay skaters, slow, but okay. The Dudes get on the ice and it looks like Mickey gets five hole on his first shot. Jinder gets a nice high top corner. 39 and still no five hole for the girls. But on their 11th shot, the Twins get done, beating the Olympians. And this brings up an Amazing Race rule, I’m calling it the Dr. Brett Burstein Rule in honour of the Season 1 contestant who brought it to my attention last year: any task which relates to your profession or seems perfect for your skills will be the ruin of your leg.

Whiskey-DixThe clue after the Detour is go to Whiskey Dix, a local watering hole. Lo and behold, the Dudes are done in less shots than the Twins, 9 only, leaving the Gold Medalists behind. Not even on 52nd shot are they done.  Finally, after 57 shots, the get it. That’s gotta be embarrassing. They decide to run to the bar cause they know it’s really close. Because of that, they are back in first. That was a good move; not choosing the Fast Forward wasn’t.It’s a Roadblock and the team member must dress like a rock star (or an 80s Hair Metal version of one), memorize the lyrics of a song and perform. That’s perfect for me. Yeah, I know what I said about something that’s up your alley, but I’m a drummer, not a frontman so it won’t be as bad. Or maybe Gord, he’s good at memorizing and at 6’7″ he’d have amazing presence onstage. Rock on.Natalie and Mickey are on it. So is one of the Twins. The perogy teams are still in the basement. Rex and Bob get 30, almost half, which is decent. Alain and Audrey need one more sign but aren’t leaving. To do so would mean elimination. Sukhi and Jinder finish the ice with 39 shots, still 20 less than the Olympians, so they should be proud. Their dad should be proud as well.At the club, Michel is having trouble because he’s French. They have an Express Pass so they use it and bypass the rock. Make your way to the Canadian Museum for Human Rights for the pitstop. And finally, Alain and Audrey get the last sign and they head to the pitstop. Looks like a race but is it the editing? The Twins arrive first. They get a trip to Mexico, plus $3K. And since Alain and Audrey aren’t on the mat right behind them, it’s the editing. When Jon tells them they are second, they are a bit disappointed but second’s not bad. Better than last.

Natalie and Mickey practice and he’s out to give it a try. He’s totally off key but he’s got some decent moves. But he forgets the words. Boooo. 37 perogies out of 74 for Ryan and Rob. The two couples sound like they are having fun in the basement but they are the bottom two teams. Jinder is going to sing. More rehearsing in the basement. Jinder’s getting into the rock star mode. Despite their mistakes, these guys are my fav team. Unlike some of the other so-called stronger teams, these guys have personality and life. Totally fun to watch. He’s got the moves. Hey Jinder, you wanna start a band? You may need the get the perfect lyrics on the race but you can fake the lyrics for us. We do it all the time.

Natalie bombs on her first try, Jinder and Mickey fail again. The crowd boos them all but at least they aren’t spitting, that’s never fun. Although in the punk rock world, it can be a term of endearment. Rex and Bob are done pinching, heading to the bar. Where Mickey finally gets done. Off to the Museum. Jinder’s done as well, with presence. Ryan and Rob are off to the bar. Just as Natalie gets done.

Rex-on-stage-on-Whiskey-Dix-3And may I say, Rex may have been a huge ballet star, but he’s sporting a bit of a Axl Rose paunch out there. Still, he’s 50 and he’s giving it the ole college try. Nice touch with the glasses. Mickey and Pete are 3rd, Sukhi and Jinder are 4th. Thank god there wasn’t any foreshadowing going on; I want these guys to stay so the personality of the race doesn’t fade away. And coming up in 5th, dropping further, are the Olympians. Should have done the Fast Forward instead of doing the task made for you; classic mistake.

Rob-on-stage-at-Whiskey-DixRyan and Rob arrive at the bar and holy cow, let’s see Rob onstage. I know I give him grief for not showing his personality and he’s probably a good guy, so let’s hope we see something. Rex fails for the third time. That’s gotta hurt for a guy who’s one of the most celebrated dancers in the country; no doubt he’s never dealt with rock audiences before. At least he’s not quitting. Rob dresses up and jumps onstage and takes control. Finally we get to see a side of Rob he’s never shown us on this race. “The new me”, he says. And if this is the new him, one questions why he was chosen to be on the race in the first place. Again, he’s probably a nice guy but not great TV material.

And holy crap, he’s done on the first try. At least he’s got good memorization skills. Rex finally takes off his glasses and nails it. They think they are third because the hockey girls were leaving the bar as they arrived. Sorry guys. Ryan and Rob are sixth. Rex and Bob are last. And are shocked by this.  Jon eliminates them. I’m sorry to see them go. Despite the early quitting, the boys picked it up and worked hard, getting into the spirit of the race. And some of the fun of this season is gone cause they are one of the few teams with personality, one of the few teams that are fun to watch. Bye Rex and Bob. Way to bounce back and fight for the old dudes.

Next week, we’re heading out of the country again, this time to France. That should be fun. But also touching when they visit a cemetery for fallen Canadian soldiers. And on that note, remember that the Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry, the regiment my dad served in for his many years in the Armed Forces and one that served in all the wars Canada has fought from WW1 to Afghanistan as well as in many peacekeeping missions, is celebrating its 100th Anniversary in 2014.

Note that this post, plus elimination interviews and other stuff, can be found at Amazing Race Canada with Gord and Wayne
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