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Getting from New York to Alcatraz with only your wits armed. Simple, right? 

Recaps by Gordon Pepper, GSNN

September-November 2002, ESPN
Rich Eisen

EP: Stuart Krasnow
Packager: ESPN Original Entertainment

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September 17, 2002

Reality shows are all the rage - all of the six major networks have done it (hey, even Bravo and Lifetime have), so it was only natural for ESPN to enter the arena of reality events, so we present, BEG, DEAL, and BORROW!!!!

(Uh, Gordon, it's Beg, Borrow and Deal)

Well wait a sec, wasn't ESPN smart enough to make the play on words like the phrase, Beg, Steal or Borrow, to make the show Beg, Deal or Borrow?

(I don't know, but that's the title of the show, G-Man - maybe copyright issues with another show, I don't know)

Well, what a stupid name to call a show, Maybe I should just change the title of it...

(Maybe Jason will send a dump truck full of halibut to your house if you do.) Editor's note: maybe?!?!?

......Sigh.....ok, so welcome to Beg, Borrow and Deal, the first game from ESPN. The game works this way - 2 teams of four people are created. Both teams get a list of 40 tasks to do. The objective is for each team to start in New York, complete 10 of the forty tasks and finish on Alcatraz Island in San Francisco.

Of course, there are a few hitches to this -#1. The teams start out with no money, or anything else, just the clothes on their back, and stay like that - contestants may NEVER handle money. #2. Each event that you do must be completed in a different state - if there are 3 tasks in NYC, you can only do one of them. #3 - You can have help from a friend or a relative - it's called the 1 Favor 1 Person 12 Hour rule - you can have help from anyone at any time, but it can not be in the form of money and the favor has a 12 hour time limit.

So those are the rules - lets meet the people - and my initial reactions to them -

Red Team -
Julian - A tall bald African American guy, so far he seems fairly non-stereotypical though
Aubrey - A medium sized black haired over-emotional Asian female
Tony - All-American White Bread Jock - Mr. competitive
Katie - Skinny with brown hair - seems like the den mother of this group

Green Team -
Juliet - White woman, shoulder length brown hair, went to Valley Girl school and Can't shut up.
Bubba (Bubba?) - Yes, da traditional Southern accented guy - but he doesn't look like a Bubba - more like a tall Southern hippie-yuppie combo.
Josh - Now HE looks like a Bubba, but much more rational and logical. Shorter than him, but more heavy-set with glasses and curly hair - has a sort of Chicago-ish accent.
Kelli - Taller than Juliet, same brown hair, seems to be the moralistic center of the team

Your host is Rich Eisen, one of the few people on SportsCenter who is actually funny.

Each team starts out with a different objective - The Green Team is familiar with the area and starts to go over the tasks, while the Red Team just wants to figure out how to get out of Times Square.

As the Green Team is going over the tasks, they come over Task #17 - Take a picture with an Olympic medal around your neck. Juliet JUST HAPPENS to know Summer Sanders (suuuuuuure, ESPN wouldn't just pick you because you know her would they? Noooooooooooo). So they start to go try to get in contact with her - and realize that they don't start out with a cell phone. 'When your bare essentials are taken away from you , it sucks' says Juliet.

They do find a cell phone, and Juliet calls - only to get her voice mail - which means that they have to borrow this strangers phone again. The team decides that if they can't find Summer, then they will try task #8 - get a permanent tattoo of your favorite sports team. Everyone - except Juliet. Fortunately, that doesn't happen, since they do get in touch with Summer, and she agrees to meet them.

The Red Team uses a different strategy. Julian has a friend on the Upper East Side, and they get there by using an elderly gentleman's All-Day Pass subway card. It's smooth sailing to Julian's friends house - until they get there and see that he's not home. Realizing that the favor is only good for 12 hours, they see that if his friend doesn't get back soon, they will be sleeping out on the streets of Upper East Side, and that's NOT where you want to be staying overnight.

The Green Team needs a camera - and Kelli charms the pants off two foreigners who agree to buy a disposable camera. There's your she-vixen of the team. They meet up with Summer, who agrees to the picture, and after they take it, Juliet shows Summer the parchment describing all of the tasks. Score: Green 1, Red 0.

The team asks Summer to name them, and Summer says that since the mascot at the 1992 Barcelona Games was called Cobi, they should be called Team Cobi. That's agreed upon, and Team Cobi is born. (You mean you didn't want to use the inane USA 1996 Mascot and be called Team Whatizit or Team Izzy?)

When you complete a task, a team has the right to trash talk the other team via the Producer's Cell Phone. Of course, they decide to do that as Josh calls Aubrey, who says 'Congratulations, you guys!' though it sounds like she wants to drop a dump truck on his head. 'The first team to score does not always win'. The Red Team is getting nervous about Julian's friend and Katie is calling her Mom in Elmira to come pick them up. Her mom asks her why she can't get over there 'Unless I have random sex all over the place, we won't have enough money to get there.'

Julian's friend does show up and they rest inside while deciding what to do. Katie thinks that they should go to Elmira, regardless of what everyone else thinks. Tony is using the internet to see Elmira's college history, while Katie is wondering why no one is talking strategy and what the next move should be. Am I sensing a little early team animosity?

2:40 - Day 1 - Team Cobi is looking after their second task - #6 - Go to an NBA Court and make either 9 of 10 free throws or a 3 point shot. They can't go to the Garden (since they already completed a task in New York), so it's off to Jersey to the Meadowlands to the Continental Arena. They get the transit to the Arena, but get stopped cold by security. They were on their way out when they get stopped by Public Relations Helen Strus - how shows them how to get in touch with P.R. people and teaches them how to get their way into the sports arenas. This little nugget may give the Green Team the win - it definitely makes them the favorites.

But they are the underdogs in terms of finding a place. 'We are relying on the guys cute Southern Accent, their charm and their B.S. ability'. Well, one of the three things aren't working, as they get to Millcreek Mall, who won't let them stay, and it's starting to get darker outside, and colder. It's now 9:34 pm and Team Cobi is starting to get very nervous. Bubba does make a Southern Connection and the Southern Hospitality holds. They split a suite as all four of them share the same room for the night.

At 10:25pm the Red Team is waiting for Katie's parents. 'My parents are senile, they're probably in Jersey somewhere'. Tony 'I don't want to die on the first night, that would be so anti-climactic.' The parents do get there, though, and the team gets to be introduced - well, almost all of the team. Tony finagles himself some food - but he doesn't tell the rest of the team, and they are stuck in Katie's parents van while Tony is on his quest for Honey Nut Cheerios. Katie - 'I was wondering oh my God, what did I get myself into?'

Katie's friend is the mayor of Elmira, who can get them into a prison (which would be good for task #28 - one person must pay in a prison hoops game) 'why don't you wear your jockstrap backwards for that day?' and right now, as Tony does not share any of the food that he brought with him, the team may want to leave him in the prison.

They can't stay at Katie's Parents place (12 hour rule) so they go to her friend Kelly's place and spend the night there. They're all talking about how tomorrow's a new day, which is all well and good - but they also all know that they have to play catch-up as Team Cobi has already completed one task.

Day 2 - 6:07 am - Team Cobi gets up from their hotel room. 'It's almost stupid how appreciative we were that we got a hotel room.' Josh calls up Pat Hanlon from the NY Giants and asks him about completing Task #11 - putting on a helmet and catching a 35 yard pass from an NFL Quarterback. With the fact that he used Helen Strus as a reference to Pat, he was interested, but he
said he would get back to him after the quarterback meeting.

Meanwhile, The Red Team is trying to get access into the Elmira State Correctional Facility. To the surprise of no one, Tony gets chosen to play basketball with the inmates. Katie is waiting for the correctional facility to get back to them.

Kelli and Juliet made a contact called Rudy - who owns a cab company. They would take the team to Giants Stadium to see if they can get into football practice. Josh goes into the Meadowlands and makes the connection - the team is allowed in.

On the way, they run into Jason Sehorn, who not only is happy to see them, but would give them a ride into Manhattan if they will wait throughout practice. They run into quarterback Jesse Palmer and running back Tiki Barber, who gets to wear his helmet. Her reaction? 'This Sucks!'

Bubba gets the catch on the first try - but here's the catch (pun intended) - ALL FOUR PEOPLE must catch the ball. Kelli, after a few tries, gets her catch, and that's two. Josh is up - and he has a secret 'I know almost nothing about sports'. It shows, as he takes more tries than Juliet does. 'I am afraid that I will be what happened to that poor little kid, Lucas , in the film'. He finally does get it, so that's three.

Here comes Juliet, and everyone's making fun of her. Kelli - 'She's talking about how wonderful of an athlete she is, and its just Butterfingers, Butterfingers, Butterfingers'. She is, arguably, the worst catcher of the four, and she is taking so long that the Giants is threatening to end the practice without her getting the fourth catch - which would make the task null and void.

Kelli is looking for encouragement from the Giants players. 'Come one, do we ever go the stadium and heckle you?' Uhhhh....ummmmm.....Yes? Finally, after an easy 20 minutes of ridicule and heckling from the Giants players, Juliet catches the ball, and they have completed their task. Score: Team Cobi 2, Red Team, 0.

10:42 am -

White The Green Team is waiting for Jason Sehorn to take them to their third task, the Red Team is waiting for the phone call that will get them to their first task. They are still hoping for the call from the facility, and Aubrey is starting to panic. 'I don't want to get down on anybody, but I will get down on myself...we got to do something and we got to do it now.' Tony is trying to talk her out of it, and it's not working. 'One little snag, and she's like, oh, we're so not going to make it'. And right now, they're not, because after the end of the first episode, Team Cobi leads, 2-0.

September 24, 2002

Last time we left our stalwart players, Team Cobi has completed 2 tasks and are on the way, thanks to Jason Sehorn, to task #3. Team red team, who aren't creative enough to name their team yet, have gotten nothing, nada, zero, zip - but a lot of whining from Aubrey (but that doesn't count as a task).

The red team was up in Elmira, already fragile since they're behind 2-0, get even more shattered when Katie gets turned down by the Department of Corrections - that stops them from completing the task of playing a game of basketball in a correctional facility. Katie tries again by trying to get them into Elmira college to give a bath to the mascot - which is another task that they can complete.

Meanwhile, Team Cobi goes back into NYC, thanks to Jason Sehorn - which makes absolutely no sense to me, since they have to complete tasks in different states, and they have already completed one in NY.

But they are still 2 tasks better than the red team, as Katie is determined for them to do something in Elmira, convinced that if they don't do something here, she will be replacing Tony as the person that the team would most want to stay in the Elmira Correctional Facility. Fortunately for Katie, the mascot was there, and they are able to clean it to complete their first task.

The team decides to call themselves Team Contact, because of the contacts that they need to make in order to be able to win the game. Speaking of contacts, Team Cobi's Josh uses his contact in order to get a rent-a-car to get to Washington to complete another task. Their feeling of invulnerability was limited once they get the obligatory trash talking phone call from Team Contact after they completed their first task, and it's even more so when they need a credit card and a driver's license to use any of the rental car companies. Josh's friend eventually gets them bus tickets to go to DC - but not before squabbling starts, and the team starts to splinter.

Speaking of splintering teams, Katie's sister takes Team Contact to Jersey, where Aubrey finds a friend who is a Philadelphia NFL player to spend the night with. It's 1:30 - and they have to be in bed by 3am, or they will violate the sleep rule - you have to sleep for 6 hours in a 24 hour span, or teams will be penalized by having their movement constricted on the next day.  When the NFL player doesn't show up, everyone gangs up on Aubrey for not telling them that this would be guaranteed. 'Even if it was a doubt in your mind, you could have told us, so we could have avoided THIS type of thing'.

Going back to finding a place to stay - Juliet has a friend of a friend who is supposed to meet them at the bus station - but her friend is not there and the team s starting to panic, according to Josh. 'Are you kidding me? This place is like Calcutta - she's not coming down here...I think there are people down here that are actually dead.' But Juliet's friend shows up, which shocked Josh. 'I think what we're seeing is people who trust and believe their friends', says Bubba.

2:40 am in Philadelphia - and Aubrey's NFL friend is still not there - 'We had 20 minutes before we had to sleep outside, and people aren't exactly going to be friendly at 3 in the morning.' Katie 'I probably could do this better by myself...this would never happen to my teammates if I was calling the shots.' Where does the princess want her bed? But they will get to sleep inside, as Barry Gardner gets home at 2:45, shocked to see those 4 people there. And all is forgiven - maybe.

Day 4 - 9am - and we're talking about Bubba's stinky feet and hygiene. Josh - 'I'm not wearing any underwear right now...because it's being cleaned, and that's a good feeling/' Thanks for sharing, Josh.

Bubby is going to his old work place to see if he can get his old boss, Congressman Lindsey Graham agree to task #34 - play a game of touch football with 4 members of Congress. But everyone else thinks that Bubba spent too much time inhaling those stinky socks. 'With the security these days, do you really think that they're going to do this? Are you serious?' says Juliet. Josh agrees. 'I have a feeling today is not going to be very fruitful.'

This will give Team Contact the opportunity to tie the score. Barry gives the team a whole list of numbers to call, while the team tries to complete #11 - All 4 members of the team must catching a 35 yard pass from an NFL quarterback. They call A.J. Feeley, who will agree to it. They also will try to complete task #29 - play a game of H-O-R-S-E with an NBA athlete. They get in touch with Richard Jefferson, who will meet them at the Meadowlands at 5pm.

Team Cobi gets to Lindsey Graham's office. Lindsey and company do get it happen - but not until tomorrow morning. They know that they have this in the bag - but Josh wants to try to get something done today - Task #1 - Bathe a mascot. Juliet gets them an appointment within minutes and Josh convinces the team to go to Georgetown to try to get it done - and to pound the other team into hopelessness, hoping that they'll give up.

But Team Contact is about to tie up the score. They get in touch with Feeley, and they get into Veteran's Stadium. Tony gets it done quite easily, while Aubrey wants to try to use a Nerf Football instead. She gets it done on the second try, and that's 2 down. Katie is next, 'I'm a good gymnast, I don't play football.' That was fairly evident, as she struggles - but she does eventually catch one.

It comes to Julian, who decides to catch it using a running pattern. He looks more like Gary Owens than Terrell Owens, and tweaks his hamstring. But he does grab the ball, and Team Contact ties the score up at 2. The team decides to trash talk Team Cobi - and this time it works, as they panic the other team into sniping at each other. 'Why am I even here - I don't like politics'. explains Juliet, and the team is confused as they are walking in D.C.. We end this episode with the team trying to figure out how to get to Georgetown.

Score -
Team Contact 2
Team Cobi 2

October 1, 2002

After watching the Twins take Oakland out of game one, both teams try to take each other out on Day 3 by building an insurmountable lead. Both teams are tied at 2-2 apiece. Team Cobi is in Washington DC trying to bathe the Georgetown mascot, while Team Contact is on the way to the Meadowlands to play a game of H-O-R-S-E with the Nets' Richard Jefferson.

Team Cobi finds the mascot - but the doggy may need to be taken into the pasture and shot. He has his foot in a cast with a broken leg, but he is the trooper and he gets the bath. Team Cobi retakes the lead - 3-2.

Team Contact is on the way to the Meadowlands, thanks to Aubrey's friend Vendana, who drives them down. But right now, H-O-R-S-E may be turned into Y-O-U A-R-E S-C-R-E-W-E-D once they hit security. Richard Jefferson does show up, however, and gets them in. In order to complete the task, only one of them needs to beat Jefferson. Jefferson, however, isn't sure that that's going to happen. Security still won't let them into the arena, and as far as beating him? 'They think that they're going to beat me in HORSE, and I don't know if that's really going to happen - we could be here all day...their mission is in my hands right here, right now, and I might just call it quits'.

They do get into the Nets NBA regulation size practice facility, which is legal according to the rules. 'Unfortunately, my competitive attitude will not allow me to throw a game, so we'll see how this works out.', says Jefferson. It works out very quickly for three of them - only Tony is left to go up against Richard. Richard gets up to H-O. 'I'm a ho. I can't say that on network TV, but this is cable, so I can say it. I'm a HO' explains Jefferson.

In true dramatic fashion, both Tony and Richard are up to H-O-R-S. They trade shot to shot, but Jefferson misses a 20 footer from the left side, and Team Contact gets the win. "I don't think they got that on camera" - but they did, Richard, and Team contact ties the score up at 3.

Meanwhile, Team Cobi celebrates with a gourmet meal - well all four of them sharing a sandwich., which I guess constitutes a gourmet meal right now. Meanwhile, the women go to the health store and get lip balm and makeup. This pleases the women, so they can look better when they try to beg, but its annoying the guys, who think that they are being superficial. The team bums a ride to Arlington thanks to Bubba, and they stay over at a friends house there. But Juliet disapproves about the way that Bubba is asking people for help, accusing him of not being honest, and they get into it. That lasts all day.

Meanwhile, Team Contact gets back to Pennsylvania, and they get a place to stay thanks to Julian. Tony asks for a cigarette and a light, and he gets it- but in doing so, he also commits the dumb-ass move of the episode. You see, the same person that he asks for that can also take them to Virginia for the next task (#18 ) - work in the pit of a NASCAR Crew. And because the team can only get one favor from one person, that was it - and since she gave Tony the cigarette, she can't take them to Richmond, Virginia.

Needless to say, Aubrey jumps on Tony, but she's the one non-smoker of the group and the rest of the team jump on her instead. 'You have to respect the fact that he is a smoker and that's the way it is', explains Kelli. Wha?

While Team Cobi is waiting for the Metro, discussing about when's the last time they had sex (Bubba 'Friday' Josh 'Your cousin doesn't count'), The woman are talking about Josh's sexuality. Josh 'I'm not gay...but....well...I wouldn't mind being associated with that sort of group.' Juliet - Whenever I think of the Little Mermaid, Josh pops in there.'. Ooooookaayyyyyyy.

They get to Arlington, Virginia, as Bubba gets a friend to stay with them - and they've never met. While they're waiting for transportation, they contemplate using the forfeit rule - they can forfeit a task for another one in the same state for money - $300 worth. They figure that if they get the cash, they can get transportation to get to the next stunt. They can do this twice during the game, and you have to forfeit it before attempting the next stunt - so it's a gamble.

But it's an academic decision - the rain comes down the next morning, which scuttles the congressman's basketball game. So they keep the cleaning the mascot as their task and try to get the trip to Baltimore. Meanwhile, Juliet wins a bet that she can't keep her mouth shut for five minutes, as the team continues to snipe at each other, albeit now toned down and more playful.

Team Contact finds a free phone, and they call people to say hi and that they love them. Awwwwwwbarf. The team starts to mosey around and loses focus, which is annoying Aubrey. 'This is turning into a 5 or 10 minute stop, and all of these five and ten minute stops is going to add up.' Yes they are, and boy will they pay for it later on in the episode. The sniping continues, and its not nearly as friendly as team Cobi. They finally get in gear in the late afternoon, which, we find out, later, is way too late to get started.

Meanwhile, at 3pm, Team Cobi are looking to complete Task #12 - Shag fly balls at any Major League Baseball batting practice. Josh and Bubba get the women to buy tickets to go to Baltimore and then Josh calls P.R. head Bill Stetka to try to let them in - Stetka says no, but they're going to go to Baltimore anyway, and according to Josh, 'bag it in on the fly'. He makes a public appeal to Stetka in person, and while that's happening, the rest of the team finds out that Josh's discussion may be pointless - there is now a tornado warning in the area, and it doesn't do them any good if they can't get onto the field to being with. 'If the weather holds up for 30 more minutes...' pleads Bubba. It doesn't, and down comes the rain.

4:30 pm - Team Contact realize that it's time to go, and they get a ride to the Amtrak - and then get swarmed by police officers, who tell them that they can't panhandle. They get sent away from there, and decide to hit a college university. Team Contact finds a fraternity and pleads with them for a ride to get them to Virginia. Rob, from the fraternity, has relatives there so he decides to do it. The frat loves it and decide to go on a road trip - Frat Party!

The rain comes down, which almost kills the Baltimore game - but Team Cobi gets the help from Bill Stetka, who brings them a back-up major league catcher and some gloves. They get to shag the balls (where's Austin Powers here? Shagadellic, baby), And take the lead, 4-3.

The party is over for Team Contact - in more ways than one. They get to the Richmond Campus - only to find out that it's Beach Week and no one is on the campus. Remember that time that they spent wasting around? It comes back to bite them in the ass, since if they got there at 7 or 8pm, they could have found a place to sleep over. But it's now almost 2am, and there's no one around. They have nowhere to go - we end this episode with them trying to find a place to stay,

Score - Team Cobi 4, Team Contact, 3

October 8, 2002

We are now at the halfway mark - and the teams are looking to get to the halfway mark of the scoring. Team Cobi leads 4-3 over Team Contact, who was looking to tie up the score - but right now are looking to tie-up a place to stay for the evening, as it's almost 3am and they're stuck on the streets of Richmond, Virginia.

But we rewind a few hours earlier to 6:50pm - where Team Cobi is trying to avoid Team Contact's lack of residence. Kelli has friends in Michigan and wants to see her own graduation party - she's giving up her graduation to go do this. Juliet has friends in Philly and wants to go there instead. Josh's reaction? 'F&ck Philly'.

Kelli and Juliet get at each other and Bubba tries to be a mediator, slightly siding with Kelli, since from a logical standpoint, the teams have to migrate to the west side of the U.S. Josh is a bit more blunt - 'I'm done with that girl, she's such a little bitch'. It's a very good thing that you're not playing the 'Survivor vote someone off of the team' version of Beg, Borrow and Deal, Juliet.

Team Cobi goes to the Weston and meets a bunch of affluent people from John Hopkins University. The team convinces the affluents to give them tickets to Detroit for Kelli's graduation (though they do tell her she'll actually be in the graduation - when she won't be. OOPS). Kelli may get to see her graduation - but she'll definitely be able to attend the graduation party afterwards. 'I don't care if I get my wrists slit right now, as long as I'm bleeding all the way to Detroit'.

At 3 am, Team Contact may be bleeding - but in a more physical sense - because they can't find a place to stay and are in danger of losing their own well-being. They have already violated the 6 hour sleep option - and will be penalized double the amount of time that they took trying to get some sleep. They run into a friend named Pat and his friend, who offers them a basement. They get a 9 feet by 7 feet room, which is good enough for right now.

But since they didn't get to sleep on time, they will be penalized for it. They are 2 hours late - so they stuck in 'Lockdown' for four hours - they can play - but not do anything that could help them out in their task.

When they are out of Lockdown, they discuss attempting to complete Task #18 - Work in the Pit Crew of a NASCAR race. They get food from a 7-11 with one of Pat's friends, and find a guy with a Mustang to bum a ride to the racetrack. Remember when the women on Team Cobi needed to get make-up? Well, it's Katie's turn to start whining about it. Aubrey - 'I don't think Katie's always concerned about the game...I think she's her own zone, wondering about what Katie's going to do next.'

They go to the Rite-Aid to freshen up, and Aubrey starts to lose it. 'I feel so desperate to do a task...and right now it seems so far away...I'm just not feeling the progress...I just don't know what to do, and I feel so sad...I don't want to quit, but I don't want to hurt the team'. Aubrey, have you met Juliet?

Team Cobi can't take the bus all the way to Michigan, thanks to the 12 hour rule (a favor can only last for 12 hours), so they get of at Toledo. The good news is that they can use the bus ride as the 6 hour sleep rule. The better news is that Kelli's dad picks them up in Toledo. The team decided to visit Kelli over visiting Bubba's family in the South (or Juliet's friends in Philly, though that wasn't really an option), and Josh was concerned. 'This move may have cost us the race.' If you knew what the other team is doing, you wouldn't be that concerned.

Team Cobi decides to go to Joe Louis Arena and try to shoot goals off of an NHL goalie - but they get stoned instead by the management. Bubba - 'We're getting absolutely nowhere with the home team here - their people tell us to get off of their property.' Kelli is especially upset - she feels that it's her responsibility to get something done in Michigan, and if they don't, they would be wasting valuable time.

Team Contact, trying to take advantage of their stay in Virginia, is now extending their sight. In addition to Task 18, the team could instead try to complete Task 14 - Ride in the pace car at a NASCAR Event. They are met at the gate by Frankie and Torrie, who are female...uh...entertainers, and who's idea of entertaining is to remove their clothing. They say that they can help working in the pit crew, as they have 'connections' with some of the drivers. The catch - they won't be back until 10:30 pm.

Team Contact decide that they will try to get something done faster - so they go to the press area, but, according to Julian - "we hit roadblocks all along the way, and we were finally told 'no'". Katie - 'We thought this was going to work out - yeah we can bang out three tasks, if one of them doesn't work, we can do this one, if this one doesn't work...but none of them worked.'

Back in Detroit, the team is desperately trying to complete Task #13 - Score a goal on an NHL Goalie. It doesn't have to be in an NHL arena - it can be anywhere - it also can be any team. The St. Louis Blues were playing Detroit that night, so the team could have shoot goals against a St. Louis goalie, instead of the Detroit goalie that they were originally hoping to volley pucks off of. The team, banished from the main area of the arena, is now stuck in the parking lot. The St. Louis Blues bus is there, filled with St. Louis players - and ready to take the players to their hotel.

Staring a missed opportunity in the face, the team decides to resort to Josh's philosophy - 'If it doesn't work by calling ahead, show up in person, if it doesn't work when you show up in person, take your top off and show your breasts.' The women do just that and start taking off of their tops. They get to their T-Shirts when a player gets off of the bus - he says 'you know what they want don't you?' They know, and they would do it - IF they get a goalie to come out and help them complete their task. 'Don't tell my dad!' says Juliet. Uhhhh...this is sort of being aired nationally. I think he may get the hint by now.

Freddie Braphley, a goalie for the Blues, gets out of the bus. He decides to do it and spares the girls from baring their boobies. Freddie is trying to be nice - 'I do play in the NHL, but I haven't seen shots like this in a long time.' Uuuuuuuhhhh...ok. Juliet gets the task-completing goal, and Team Cobi gets to the halfway mark (5-3). The team lets Kelli go to the graduation party before they go to their next state of attack - Illinois.

Kelli celebrates with her Sorority, but the party is over, in terms of tasks. A team can only compete 5 teams in the east - the other 5 tasks must be completed in the Western side of the U.S. They decide to use option of calling the other team and trash Team Contact - who assume that they completed a task and they weren't happy about it.

Day 5 - 10:25 pm - Team Contact couldn't get anything done in terms of management, and they are waiting for their stripper friends Torrie and Frankie to show up. Of course, strippers are not known for their sense of time, and after 11pm, they give up and go to the RV Park. That's when the bottom starts to falls out of the team. Katie starts ripping on everybody, especially on Tony. They go to a trailer, and are offered blankets and pillows to sleep out on the lawn. They get a toothbrush from someone with four teeth left (Wha?) and we get to see Katie doing it. Ewwwwwww.

No food, being penalized for not finding a place to sleep, and constant sniping finally takes their toll on the team as the breakdown reaches it's climax. The men turn in for the night, which royally pisses off the women, who wake up the guys to hash it out. That sparks Tony - 'I haven't felt like a team since day 1' - and he goes after Katie, who sort of apologizes. Tony - 'Nobody seemed to like anybody...this is the low point...the absolute low point, for our team.' So they spend the next hour going at each other and disassembling anything that would remotely help them to function as a team, and to top it all off, Team Out-Of-Contact spends the night sleeping on the lawn.

In much happier times in Michigan, Kelli gets her boyfriend Jake and his friend Todd to drive them to Chicago to Juliet's parent's house. Juliet stays the night - with Jake's friend Todd - while Kelli with her boyfriend. 'Let's just say that I didn't have any problems getting sleep last night'. Oooooook.

Juliet's parents live in a mansion. Josh - 'We ended up just going with some freshly baked breads and yogurts and of course warm meats and cheeses from around the world....I would doubt very much that the other team was sitting next to a full-sized leopard...I would be very surprised if any members of the (opposing) team were sitting next to full-sized statues of endangered species.'

Team Contact maybe considering their teamwork as an endangered species, is woken up by the sounds of cars driving away from the RV Park. Tony feels like his teams chances to win this thing may also be on the endangered species list. "It's been a series of 'we screwed up'".

'When it comes to be 'your day' there's so much pressure that comes with it - you don't want to let the team down - it's your show.', says Juliet, who is hosting the team for the time being. Juliet decides to go to the Bulls camp to see if anyone's around to play H-O-R-S-E there. The building is locked up, and even though there's a new van outside, the team gives up on that and tries to find something else to do.

Comiskey Park is next - and there's lots of activity about, as there is a game that night. The team tries to throw the opening pitch - but that's position has been booked way in advance, so that's not going to happen. We leave the team outside of Comiskey Park as they look at their task scroll for their possible options.

Options is what Team Contact is desperately searching for. It's been bordering on 2 days that Team Contact didn't get any tasks completed. Katie tells them to triple-check the task sheet, and as they do that, they realize that they are within walking distance of a minor league baseball team - the Richmond Braves. This works perfectly with task #03 work for a minor league baseball team for a game. They go to the organization and volunteer to work for them, but they get turned down, so that didn't work either.

That was the proverbial strike three for Team Contact in this episode, which was a miserable one for them as they not only not get anything accomplished, but almost implode. They will need something miserably bad to happen to Team Cobi to get back into it, but everyone wrote off the Twins, Angels, Giants and Cardinals too - and look where they are now.

Score -
Team Cobi - 5
Team Contact - 3

October 15, 2002

Last time we left our 2 teams, Team Cobi was halfway to their goal of 10 tasks, while Team Contact has hit rock bottom and is looking to invoke the power of the rally monkey to bounce back.

But we start with team Cobi. They are at Comiskey Park in Chicago, and are determined to stay there until they can complete a task. They are asking the people outside for help, and they're not getting anywhere. Finally, after countless number of P.R. guys that they are talking to, one of them allows them to do task #30 - Throw out the first pitch at a Major League Baseball game.

Juliet, the home town girl, gets to throw out the pitch. How did she do? Well, let's just say that the rally monkey would have done a better throwing job. But they did complete the task, and Juliet is thrilled. 'I love the team, I love the way we're going, and we're six for six, baby!'

What can be better? Josh's friend getting them tickets for 'Contact', which won the 2002 Toni Award for Best Musical. 'This far down the line, 6 days into it, you would think that teams would be breaking up because of just being around each other 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We're getting tighter and tighter. ' We'll be revisiting that quote at the end of the episode, Bubba.

Now, for a very stark contrast, we go down to Richmond to see Team Contact. They are stuck in the Atlanta Brave's AAA affiliate - and they are not interested in helping out Team Contact. But Contact doesn't go away, and the persistence finally pays off, in the form of Task #3 - Ride with a minor league team on a minor league bus, then work as the bat boy and the bat girl for the game while the other two people work concessions.

But the Richmond Braves General Manager sees something different for Tony - and Tony gets to be Diamond Duck - the mascot for the Richmond Braves. 'Oh my Lord - this is around as bad as bad gets.' explains Tony - as apparently no one has washed the costume since the Ronald Reagan administration. 'The suit is not quite smelling like a candle shop, if you know what I'm saying'. 'Maybe he's found his new niche, maybe it's something that he should look into' snipes Aubrey.

Katie, meanwhile, gets to be the ball girl - and the recipient of sexual innuendo jokes for the whole night, including patting an umpire on the butt. They finally get a task completed, and now trail Cobi by 2 points (4-6). Katie uses her friend Chris Sandler to take them to Raleigh, North Carolina. Their spirits are high again - 'We're going to be the winning team.' says Tony. Well, Tony, right now, you are going to need more than the rally monkey and Diamond Duck to get back into it.

Day 7 - 7:20 am - rise and shine for Team Cobi. They stayed at Josh's friends parents house last night and can stay there until 11:50 am. The strategy is to go to Wisconsin - Milwaukee is 90 minutes from where they are - and Juliet's aunt is supposed to get them tickets for their next destination. They are taking a risk to sneak in and back - because there could be serious lodging problems if they don't return in time or if anything goes wrong along the way. 'I don't think we should go to Milwaukee at all today.' protests Kelli 'I just hope Juliet's cousin or aunt is lined up ready to get those tickets, meeting us at the station, because if everything doesn't go smoothly, I'm going to be really upset.'

Joshua's friend, Yom, gives Josh a car to borrow. The team will try to sing the national anthem in Milwaukee - the game starts at 1 pm, and the train leaves at 3:15 pm. Any traffic or problems along the way, and they miss the train. One potential problem comes up when they realize that road that they are driving on requires them to pay tolls - and they don't have any money. Oops.

While that's going on, Katie's friend Chris is allowing them to stay over, and his friend drove Team Contact to Raleigh. As they are getting up, Tony is using the internet to try to get another task done, something that pleases Aubrey. 'I was so happy trying to take initiative to try to look something up. They are going for Task #17 - Take a picture with an olympic medal around your neck. The team thinks that someone from the Carolina Courage women's soccer team (WUSA) has a medal from the olympic team.

Team Cobi gets to the tollbooth, and Josh Bs's his way through all of the tolls to get him through. 'I nicknamed him 'magic' because he always is able to pull something out of thin air.' says Bubba as he and Kelli both pile praises on him (awwwwwbarf). They get to Milwaukee and try for task #33 - Sing the National Anthem at a MLB game.

'The office of the Brewers in Milwaukee could not have been less threatening. It was like bingo night at a Daughters of an American Revolution. 2 old ladies an d an 80 year old man.', explains Josh. So far , so good - until Juliet opens her mouth and tries to rush the situation, which completely offends the 80 year old guy.

Needless to say, that does not sit well with the rest of the team, who is seeing a golden opportunity slip out of their fingertips thanks to Juliet. 'She is a total liability everywhere we go...whenever we go to accomplish a task, there's always 2 tasks that have to be accomplished; accomplishing the task, and figuring out how not to have Juliet screw it up for us.' laments Josh.

The rest of the team muzzles her long enough to meet Jon Greenberg, head of Public Relations. They were wondering if they could sing back-up with 'The Bottom Line', whixh is the name of the singing group from the Kellogg School from Northwestern, and they are told that they have to wait for the group to show up.

Team Contact gets to the SAS Stadium, home of the Carolina Courage - they are hoping to find someone with an olympic medal - and there are plenty to go around. They meet Carla Overback, who takes them to her house and gets them the picture of the gold medal. The lead is now a slim 6-5, which is great - but now they have to figure out how to go west. Stacy, another person on the soccer team, suggests to go to a birthday party to try to get tickets to Knoxville, Tennessee.

Back in Milwaukee, the Brewers give Team Cobi permission to speak to 'The Bottom Line' - and the 'Line wants to hear Team Cobi sing. And they do - for around five words. 'This is not boding too well.', but they do let them in - as long as they keep the volume low (so they can't really be heard). They do sing it, and they get their 2 point lead back (7-5).

But back to getting the train - they wanted to leave at 12:30, but since the game was at 1, they have to leave pronto. Juliet uses a cell phone to make sure that the aunt shows up - and she gets a 'I don't know if I can show up' instead. Uh-Oh.

Back to Team Contact - Stacy does come through, and brings them to Tiffany's birthday party to try to beg for money or tickets to knoxville - the furthest place that they can get to for the 12 hour period that a favor can last for. They make their plea, and someone takes a hat and throws it all around the room. They make $190 so far - and Tiffany is trying to get the rest of the money to get them out of there. They eventually raise the money, obtain the tickets, and it's off to Knoxville they go.

But not before Aubrey and Katie continue sniping, with Julian playing the role of Switzerland. Katie is celebrating, while Aubrey is trying to figure out the next plan. They are sniping at each other. The sniping continues in the land of Cobi - Juliet wants to know about her approach - and they let her have it. Josh - 'To be totally fair, you have the worst approach of anyone I have ever met in my entire life.' Juliet 'Are you kidding me?' Josh 'No'. It starts to get nasty in the car.

It gets even nastier when they get back to Chicago. They get to Union Station - and Juliet's aunt is not there. According to Josh,'Unless things change dramatically, we're delegated to another night in Chicago, and this time with no connections whatsoever.' Fade to black.
Score -
Team Cobi - 7
Team Contact - 5

October 22, 2002

We're at the 75% mark of the episodes (only 8 episodes in this series) - call this a 'must-win' episode for Team Contact. They only have 5 tasks completed and are still on the Eastern side of the U.S. Team Contact only has three episodes to get 5 tasks done and to get to Alcatraz - a very daunting goal. Meanwhile, Team Cobi already has 7 tasks in the bank and is well on their way to task number eight.

Team Cobi is well on their way - until Juliet's Aunt (who has their tickets) is nowhere to be found - and neither is Josh's friend Yon (who is supposed to pick up the car that they borrowed). With '8 Minuets until the train leaves' (Yes, that was the graphic in the ESPN episode - minuets and all) Juliet's aunt does show up and Kelli gets the first class tickets. Josh sees a redeeming feature in Juliet - sort of. 'Now we get to where Juliet comes in handy...whatever problems that Juliet causes when it comes to people that we don't know at sports offices she makes up for when it comes to her family and friends.' Juliet's Aunt does come through, and they are travelling in luxury to the mid-west.

Everyone at Team Cobi are talking about how lucky they are to be in the position that they are in. Josh - 'One of our first moments where we really as a group said, in a really serious way - we're so proud of each other.' Flip over to Team Contact, who instead of going first class, are going Greyhound class. Katie - 'I was afraid I was going to be abducted and thrown into a ravine somewhere where no one would ever find me.' They take the 12 hour bus ride that Cobi had to take as Contact is on their way to Nashville.

Team Cobi finds their way to Kansas City - and unlike the other places that they've gone to, they don't have any connections there. 'Im really really nervous that we're going to get comfortable with some corn husks. The fear is justified, since the team will not be arriving there until 11pm - not a lot of time to find a place to stay. To make matters worse, it's raining, and the hotel that they are trying to get lodging from is not going to let them stay there.

They get a business man to give them the money for the $140 business rate, and that looks like it will work - until the hotel turns around and charges them a rate of $209 plus tax. Juliet succeeds in getting a friend named Jacob to get them a room - but it won't be at that hotel, since the management gets tired of Team Cobi and forces them out of their establishment. Jacob, though, is nice enough to walk the group down to the Fairfield Inn (almost a mile down) in the pouring rain and gets them the room special, which includes a morning breakfast, hot showers, etc. Team Cobi is in high spirits going into Day 8.

7:20 AM - Team Contact gets into Knoxville - and they are off to look for a fraternity that would help them with transportation. Aubrey, meanwhile, is looking for new teammates, as she is upset that she feels she's the only one doing something. Julian's response? 'I get frustrated when someone is bitching and has no solution...I'm worried about what we're doing.' They do get a fraternity to help them cross into the next time zone - and while they're waiting, they decide to go after a task - Make 9 of 10 free throws or a 3 point shot from an NBA court.

'Here I was again, the one making the phone calls, the one trying to make things happen...98% of the phone calls are being done by me.' laments Aubrey - and she has a point. She's the only one taking initiative for the team, while the rest of them just seems to be discouraged from their experiences. She does get through, and it's off to Memphis. Aubrey never tells the Pyramid what the task is - or what they needed to do - we'll get back to that point later. You can do a task due to the forfeit rule - they won't get another point for the task, but they will get $300 if they succeed - and that $300 would be good for them to get tickets somewhere else if they need to.

7:23 AM - Team Cobi wakes up and sees a rainstorm. They wanted to do a task - task #10 - Score a goal on a MLS or WUSA goalie - and the rain is not helping. 'The weather is supposed to be our friend' explains Kelli. 'If the weather does not cooperate with us, we're screwed'. But one of the advantages of getting a good hotel - the abundance of beauty products, which the women are using to pretty themselves up - and accentuate their flirting prowess. 'I think it's a control thing - I like to have control over a situation - especially with men.' thanks, Juliet.

Josh calls up the Kansas City Wizards to try to get a goalie - and they succeed and get an 11:30 appointment. 'We've been relentless - we keep pushing, keep pushing...and we have not sat back to smell the roses'. Good words from Bubba - and that's why they have the 2 task lead. Josh gets a ride and the team goes to Arrowhead Stadium to meet the Wizards goalie.

Team Contact has a killer instinct - but if they don't get this done, then they may be resorting to killing each other. They get to the Pyramid - but because of a graduation ceremony, the hoops are not set up, and they won't be set up for the whole day. Perhaps if Aubrey told the Pyramid group what they wanted to do, then they could have saved Team Contact a trip down there.

So it's time for back-up plan B - play basketball in a correctional facility. That's not going to work. 'Basically he just laughed and said - that's not going to happen...we got rides, we got food, we got all this stuff, but we got no tasks done, which for us is the main thing, so our team spirit just dwindled.'

Here's an example of team disunity - Tony wants to get food, while the rest of the team wants to get something done. Tony goes to get food and on the way to Wendy's throws the scroll at Katie. 'You know how to piss me off? Take my food away.' The guys squabble about hoe the girls needed make-up and things finally smoothed over. They move to Little Rock, Arkansas - the good news it that now they're in the western part of the U.S. and they can get tasks completed.

The completion of tasks becomes even more of a priority as Team Cobi gets to Arrowhead Stadium. Josh convinces the head of PR, Justin Gorman, to have them compete in the main stadium. Sweet. Here's some more details on the task - it has to be a regulation penalty kick - and the team only has 10 tries to do it. If they fail to convert on the 12 yard kick in the ten tries, then the attempt is failed and they would have to find another goalie if they wished to try again.

Bo Oshonyi is the goalie - 'I think I'll make some saves and make them work for it, we'll see - I hope they don't kick too hard.' If Josh's weak grounder that skirts right past the right side of the goal is any indication, Bo may as well bring a lawn chair with him and a pitcher of lemonade.

Donned in Wizards shirts (thanks to the stadium), Josh actually gets a decent kick, but Bo covers it. Kelli kicks it directly to Bo. Juliet gets it past Bo, but it was wide. Bubba's turn - and he decides to do something different. 'They're always trying to do something to fake out, to try to freeze the goalie.' Bubba does that, aims left, and shoots right - and gets it past Bo. He scores, and he takes his shirt off (at least we're spared from Josh taking his shirt off). They complete the task done and now lead, 8-5.

Team Cobi wants to hit Denver next, but since they have no connections (and need $300 for the tickets to Denver), this one may be tough. It's not as tough, however, as the situation for Team Contact, who face the third episode in which they get no tasks accomplished. Julian's friend has tickets to go to Dallas. It's 5:30 - and the time wasted to get food and snipe at each other may cost the team yet again, as they can't find the bus station. Julian, who's getting very sick of the team team sniping at each other while not getting anything done, is threatening to leave the team if they are stuck in Little Rock for the night. 'This isn't worth it...I'll quit right now...we lose the game if we're stuck here tonight.'

It's 5:35 pm, and Team Contact still can't find the bus. Tony goes into a bar and convinces 2 girls to take them to the bus station. 'Don't be surprised it I don't make it to the end of the series...I'm ready to quit now - send me home.' warns Julian. They get to the bus station - but it's the wrong one - they have to go to the Greyhound bus station - which is across the river. They get a bus driver to take them there, but will it be in time?

Team Cobi, unlike team Contact, uses their resources properly. Juliet's sister is a student at the University of Colorado at Boulder - the catch is to get there. Her cousin's friends gets them 2 tickets, while Josh finds some people to get them the other 2 tickets - it's off to Colorado we go. Juliet turns from the pariah at the end of last episode to the hero at the end of this one.

Team Contact gets to the Greyhound Bus Station in time, so Julian stays on. 'Im not going down without a fight'. This from the person who was going to quit the show? Aubrey explains 'We're just not getting's not from a lack of trying.'

But it is from a lack of trying - That seems to be the problem with Team Contact - Team Cobi is just hungrier and wants it more. Team Contact has taken no for an answer when Team Cobi wouldn't, and the fact that Team Cobi haven't let their individual differences affect the team has made all of the difference in the world. With 2 episodes left, Team Contact has to complete 5 tasks and get to San Francisco. Unless the Rally Monkey grabs Team Cobi and mistakes them for Thundersticks, that's just not going to happen.
Score -
Team Cobi - 8
Team Contact - 5

October 29, 2002

We have two episodes left, and although the winning team is not in doubt, the question is by how much: Team Cobi is up 8-5 and is very close to being on the West Coast. Team Contact, is in another state of crisis and is only in Dallas. When a sporting event's outcome is no longer in doubt, the rest of the game is called 'Garbage Time'. We have 2 episodes worth of Garbage Time left to go in this series.

But that's not saying that it won't be entertaining - and part of our entertainment is to see other teams miserable - which is what Team Cobi was on the way to Denver. They had to stop at Limon, Colorado, thanks to the 12 hour rule. One of Juliet's sister's friends meets them in Limon and takes them to Boulder. Being that they are in a big city, Josh of Team Cobi is going over their options on what tasks they can do while they're there:

1. Task #4 - Anchor a local TV sportscast or host a radio show
2. Task #22 - Play a game of horse against an NBA player (Though its not really sure if there are any real NBA players on the Denver Nuggets)
3. Task #23 - Spend 8 continuous hours with the Stanley Cup (Colorado Avalanche)

Meanwhile, Team Contact gets into Dallas, and one of Julian's friends (Harlan) hosts them up for the night. There are plenty of things to do in Dallas. The Kings and Mavericks are practicing today and the team attempts Task #1 - Get a product endorsed by an overall #1 Draft Pick. Chris Webber of the Kings was a #1 Draft pick, so Team Contact goes down to the American Airlines Center.

After hassling supermarket patrons for a ride, Team Contact get passes from a bus driver to get down there. Once at the Arena, they hook up with Sarah, who is the head of P.R. for the Mavericks. Sarah gets them on to the court as they realize that they can complete a different task - shoot either 9 of 10 free throws of a 3 pointer on an official NBA Court.

Day 9 for Team Cobi starts with them having Run of the House from one of Juliet's sister's neighbors place. Josh and Bubba work to make the connections while they let Juliet and Kelli pretty themselves up - sounds petty, but the team is working better than Team Contact. 'If the girls feel better about themselves by spending some more time in the morning showering, working out...if that makes the day run smoother then that's fine. Bubba and I don't mind working the phones for a half-hour in the morning' says Josh.

They work the phones - and Bubba gets to talk to a Producer for a radio station called The Zoo. They get the access to be special guests for the shift of a sports show - but Bubba knows nothing about sports. 'I'm dead' says Bubba.

Trying to stay alive is Team Contact - who are practicing on the court to try to either shoot 9 of 10 free throws or to make a three-point shot. Each person only get one try at either of the two options - if all four people on the team miss, then they have to try at another arena to do it again. Tony, the man who beat Richard Jefferson in H-O-R-S-E, is not feeling it in the arena. Julian goes first, because the team thinks that he is the least likely to make either of the two options. He launches the three - and it goes in! SWISH! No more drama from anyone else is needed and Team Contact gets the task. Team Cobi's lead is cut to 8-6.

Chris Webber is still in the arena, however, and the team has a decision to make. They can use the forfeit rule and trade the task in for $300 if they think that they can get the task done from Chris Webber, but they have to trade the task in before approaching Webber. Katie wants to go for it, while the rest of the team does not want to risk it. Katie is complaining, and rightfully so, that the team could at least use the $300 to stop bumming for transportation money. 'This goes to prove why we as a team (is losing) - everyone says we want to get something done, we want to get something done...I'm trying to get stuff done, it's such a good move, it's such a good move' The team chickens out and don't go for the $300. 'To me, that sucked'.

The team decides to stick around anyway to have Chris Webber get the task done - since that task is worth 2 points (Vs. the 3 point shot, which is one point). These points come into play if there is a tie and both teams get done at the same time. This is easily the dumb-ass move of the episode - the team knows that they are trailing, yet they stick around not to take a gamble which will help them, but only to do something that will help them out in a tie-breaker? Wha?

Back to the land of the sane as Team Cobi bum a ride off of Juliet's sister's friend Courtney to get to The Zoo for the Radio Show. Josh starts panicking over his non-knowledge of sports, but the team gets reassured by Scott Hastings, the Co-Host of the Zoo. They will be on 850 KOA Prime Time with Hastings and former football player Dave Logan.

For Kelli, who wants to be a sportscaster, this is a dream come true. For Josh however. 'This is pretty much the ultimate nightmare moment for me, because not only do I not know anything about sports, but I am also being singled out for that.' They pretty much exploited him and made fun of him the whole show, which prompted Josh to ask 'Do you have questions on film? Theater, maybe? Books?' They do get the task done, and they are only one task away from winning the game (9-6).

'This is why I have no money, no food and I dont care - because of the tasks and people like there...the past 3 days are a total blur...we can smell the victory...but we've sweat over what will be the last task.' says Juliet. It may be coming down to the team getting a sports tattoo. Bubba and Kelly want to do it - Josh and Juliet don't want to have anything to do with it.

But the important plan is to get to California. The plan is to have Juliet's sister drive them into Salt Lake City, then have Juliet's friend get the bus tickets to get them to Sacramento. The problem with that? Juliet's sister has a test at the same time and would not be able to go, and that gives Juliet the same sympathy as any other sister would have - none.

Back to Dallas - the team is waiting for Chris Webber, who's the last Sacramento King to show up out of the locker room. They are asking Webber for a product that he endorses - he's thinking sneakers first, then he realizes that he endorses Mountain Dew - Chris gave it to them and that completes the stunt. 'They just begged borrowed and dealed right with me...they have some nerve, I don't think I could do that.' says Webber. So this stunt is completed, and Team Contact gets - ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!!!! (Except a tie-breaker point). 'We didn't take the forfeit, probably what we should have done in hindsight.' says Julian. Well yes - and that's why you're not winning the game.

As the press was there, Team Contact got a member of the press to host them, while Julian e-mails Marc Cuban (the press person has Cuban's e-mail address) just to try to get transportation to the next place. In the e-mail, Julian said that they spent the day with the Seattle Kings - which is all well and good - except the Kings are in Sacramento, not Seattle. (That's like saying, oh I love the show Friends, and that actor, Luke Perry is wonderful as Chandler).

That is the runner-up dumb-ass move of the episode, and since Julian sends the e-mail without anyone seeing it, their chances of getting help from Mr Cuban just bricked. You sure you were better off with Julian on the team?

Julian, to try to make amends, goes to Hooters to meet his friend Carlos, who volunteered to take them to Oklahoma City so they can meet a friend of Aubreys. They pretended that it was Katie's birthday so they can get free food. They also met an owner of a night club - and he invites them to go in for free - and they were having fun for the first time in the trip.

Bubba has some friends in San Francisco - but it's a matter of getting there. Juliet is still fighting with her sister, but sis agrees to help and forgoes the studying to help them out. They will be staying at a friends place for the night, then first thing in the morning they will be driven to Salt Lake City.

Team Contact gets to Oklahoma city in the wee hours of the morning. Aubrey's friend allows them to crash there. On the next morning, Aubrey uses the connection to get them a sports gig for a morning radio show. Task number 7, though not completed, is all lined up.

But it's task #10 that is on Team Cobi's mind, as they are on the early morning route to Salt Lake City. It's a very barren landscape, but it's very nice and scenic - until the car stalls out. Josh and Bubba come out to inspect the car and they can't find out what's wrong. Fortunately, Juliet's sister has AAA, so all she has to do is to call them. Unfortunately, the cell phone that they have just ran out of power, so they're stuck in the outskirts of Salt Lake City with no way to call for help and no civilization in sight.

This may be the break that Team Contact needs, but it had better be the 24 hour pursued by psychotic animal creatures break, because with one episode left, Team Contact must get four tasks completed AND go from Oklahoma City to Alcatraz Island in one show. Anybody want to bring down the 25 point NBA nets with 2 minutes remaining in the game?

Score -
Team Cobi - 9
Team Contact - 6

November 5, 2002

Isn't it appropriate that the last night this airs is election night? One team will be inducted in as the winners (Team Cobi) while the other team probably won't get anything done (Team Contact). Let's see if I am as good as a forecaster as everyone else is...

Team Cobi is up 9-6, but they are stranded in the middle of nowhere while trying to get to Salt Lake City. They all believe that thy are out of gas - and they all squabble about getting gas - which Juliet wanted to do 30 minutes ago. The women decide to make their own brand of gas - they go to the bathroom, while Josh decides to wait a little longer before braving the cold to get gas and Bubba decides to play Tetris in the back of the car. They do eventually locate a tow truck, who gives them just enough gas to get to the next station.

Meanwhile, Team Contact gets to Norman, Oklahoma - and they decide to do task #4 - be the anchor of a sports television or radio show. WHile they are hanging out and waiting outside the radio station, Katie, who feels like Aubrey isn't having fun, picks on Aubrey, who isn't having fun - and with Katie picking on her, who can blame her? Tony thinks that the fighting is unnecessary - and it gets worse when the radio station tells them that they can't do it.

Team Contact's Aubrey uses that station's phone to get another radio station to say yes - that station is at Mickey Mantle's Steakhouse in Oklahoma City. The co-host is Al the Sports Animal, from WWLS 104.9 AM. Al is a smart-ass from New York, and while Team Contact does get their seventh task done, Al says it best - 'This is 11 days, you've gone 1500 miles, which is around 150 miles a day...that's slow - you guys are slow...I say you're getting your ass kicked by the other team!' You got to hand it to New Yorkers, they're blunt, but usually dead accurate.

Team Contact tells Team Cobi that they completed 7 tasks - unbeknownst to them, Team Cobi is up to nine - but everyone on Team Cobi is feeling a little pressure as Kelli and Bubba are pressing Juliet and Josh to get a sports tattoo. Doing that would give them their tenth and last task - something that Josh and Juliet weren't too keen over. 'I don't really want to get this tattoo - Juliet doesn't want to get it either, but both of us are perfectly willing to get it if it means winning this game'. Thanks, trooper Josh.

Back at Mickey Mantles, Team Contact gets an offer from Sabrina to stay over at their place - but the team wants to move on instead of staying, and Julian is accusing Tony about wanting to stay over to make a play at Sabrina. Meanwhile, while Tony and Julian are arguing over the best place to stay, Katie and Aubrey are fighting YET AGAIN. There is no reason to air the sniping quotes back and forth, since this team is not going to be remotely close to winning. But this quote was worth transcribing, from Julian - 'I just sat there and watched, and enjoyed. It was a classic catfight, this beats Dynasty with Joan Collins.' Tony is eagerly watching this for 2 reasons - 1. Watching Katie and Aubrey going back and forth is apparently entertaining to him, and 2. If they keep arguing, then they will have to stay there for the night, and Tony gets to score with Sabrina.

We have more internal fighting in Sacramento - but this is with Team Cobi, and it's all about the tattoo. The other players are trying to figure out how to do other tasks - playing Twister with a representative, Play Horse with an NBA player, shoot a 3 pointer of 9 out of 10 three throws, or ride on a Zambonie at an NHL game. 'The big failsafe is to get tattoos' says Josh, as he looks like he would probably prefer to get run over by the zambonie.

But they are getting the same treatment that Team Contact was getting earlier on in the series - the political people can't do it today, and the Arco Arena's NBA court is up - and the WNBA court is down - so this kills the NBA and NHL options. The only option left is the tattoo - which Josh now reluctantly accepts. They go to a lovely little establishment called Bonehead Tattoos. Josh, who is feeling like a bonehead, is still looking for that zambonie to run himself over with.

They speak to Troy, who will do it for free - 'It hurts, it's like someone jabbing a needle into your skin 50 times a minute'. Real reassuring, Troy. Kelli goes first and gets the Spartan's 'S' at the bottom of her foot. Juliet gets a Yankee logo on the same place. Bubba gets a Clemson logo on his ankle - and everyone can still smell his stinky feet. Ewwwww...... Josh first tells everyone that he won't do it - as he's kidding. Josh is last - and he gets a Boston 'B' on the sole of his foot. Troy is convinced that they will all come back for more - they're not sure about that - but they are sure that they have all ten tasks done.

They still have to go to Alcatraz Island - but they do have the ride to get there, thanks to Bubba's friend - and they are on the way to stay over at the ferry before going to Alcatraz Island the next morning.

Day 11, at almost 8pm, the only ride Team Contact has is a ride to the looney bin. They are STILL arguing about what to do for the evening. The bar owner invites them to go to a night club and go dancing - but there was a little problem - Sabrina, the person who Tony was supposed to ban...I mean band with, leaves with another guy, and not only is Sabrina gone, so is their lodging. They do find someone else - a friend named Jessica, and they stay over there. The plan is to go to New Mexico tomorrow morning and to continue to go west. Of course we all know that this will be extremely academic, as Team Cobi is already in San Francisco and is ready to get there.

But they are not there yet. 'We are sitting on the five yard line and acting like we are in the end zone'. And the launch to get there will cost $275. Juliet once again comes with a contact - her friend Ken takes care of it and they have the transportation to get there. Now as for the place - the launch place will let them stay in the waiting room for the night - in a nice 35 degree room with no heat and a broken window in the other room. But the game is all but over and all they have to do is be in one piece for the next morning.

Bubba says it best - 'Whether it's been Josh pushing us, whether it's been Juliet's connections, whether's its been Kelli's incredible ability to talk people into almost anything, working with this groups been pretty incredible and to see how we started not so tight together and to see how we've pulled together is pretty amazing.'

Day 12, 6:07 am - Team Cobi is at San Francisco Bay. Josh is pretty confident. 'The other team is nowhere in sight, I haven't seen them yet this morning. Our boat for the island is leaving in 20 minutes, I don't expect them to show up in 20 minutes, so I think it's a lock.'

Speaking of the other team, they get up this morning, thanks to Aubrey's friends, who take them into Alberquerque - Aubrey is hoping against hope that a school of metal Arabian piranha come to attack the ferry - but they don't and Team Cobi get to the island first and win the competition.

We get the traditional spiel of how everything has changed for Team Cobi, Fade to them going into Alcatraz Island and them meeting Rich Eisen. Eisen calls up Team Contact - and fills them in to the news that they just lost, while it looks like Team Contact is just glad this is over - so they no longer have to deal with each other.. 'We weren't a strong team - I'm not saying that we're bad people... we couldn't pull it together.' says Katie. Neither did the team, as they did not play well and they did not gel together as a team. Tony puts it more bluntly. 'That sucks.' Well, to be blunt, so did you guys.

Any last words from the team? 'I'm so happy, I'm so proud of us - we've come so far with nothing - we did it.' says Kelli. We end with all four people in a final Team Cobi huddle, then going into how they want a shower and biscuits now that the game is over. Fade to black.

Game Analysis: Team Cobi from the onset was the better team. They pulled away in the third episode, but it was obvious that they had more savvy, more connections, and they played the game smarter. They thought the game out well ahead, unlike Team Contact, who did things on the fly, didn't think things out in advance, and put themselves in front of the team. The defining moment was Episode 3, where Tony's bumming for a cigarette grounds just kills the team for an extra 24 hours, and their dilly-dallying after that just kept adding it on. Team Cobi gets the well-deserved win.

Show Analysis: This game reminded me of Lost, with everyone bumming for something - and it had the same problems that Lost did. There needs to be some sort of equalizer that lets a badly trailing team back into the game - or maybe there needs to be a third team, because you knew after episode 4 that Team Contact had no way to get back into this game. The idea of completing tasks and going cross-country is a neat one - but there needs to be some way that the trailing team can get into it.

Thanks for reading these synopses - and I hope you enjoyed reading them as much as I enjoyed writing them for you. Until Season 2...


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