O Captain! My Captain! — Last week, the girls traveled to San Diego for a practice weekend. Well, that was the plan, anyway.
Everyone got in the surf, but some worked a little harder than others. And by "others" I mean Jessica. Turns out Jessica's idea of practice consists of posing on the beach, gazing at the ocean, bashing bisexuals, and going out to dinner. Jessica sticks to the things she's good at.
In their hotel room, Jessica and Melissa spend the morning reviewing all the ways Erin sucks the fun out of surfing. Jessica says she feels "belittled" when Captain Erin calls her a slacker. Instead, Jessica expects to be "helped" with her slackerness.
Jessica also says it's unfair that Erin tried to kick her off the team. Asking "How committed are you?" is apparently code for "Don't let the door hit your ass on the way out."
Melissa agrees with everything Jessica says. She's so blinded by love and the cornea-searing whiteness of her own hair that she can't think clearly anymore.
Jessica's nemesis, Gingi, has inexplicably been allowed in the room and sits on one of the beds, eating an apple and chuckling to herself. Just then, Erin walks in.
Melissa: We were just talking [smack about you] and I have a question for you. It's been brought up that you're pretty intense with some of the teammates … Well, obviously, talk to Jess. And you basically were like, "Does she want to be on the team or not?" because she's not taking it, maybe, as serious as you are? Or that's your impression.
Erin: I was not even making a judgment call like that. I was not saying, "You're not good enough" or "You're not …" I wasn't saying anything like that at all. I asked you, "Do you want to do the competition?"
Jessica: You even had the audacity to even ask me do I want to leave the team.
Audacity! Jessica used a grown-up word correctly in a sentence. That Hooked on Phonics really does work.
Jessica starts topping from the bottom. Hoo, I know her type. She tells Erin to encourage her. She tells Erin to coach her. Jessica wants Erin to be the wind beneath her wings. Erin would rather take her bar exam again than be Jessica's wind.
Erin's only wish is that Jessica drop the drama for more than, oh, let's say, 20 minutes. If only wishing made things so, I'd be a faster typist and have Sarah Shahi's phone number. Or better yet, Sarah could type my recaps. Topless. Like my girlfriend does.
Can you put training wheels on a surf board? — Their bags stuffed with hotel towels and tiny shampoo bottles, the girls bid San Diego adieu and roll on back to their stomping grounds in L.A.
Michele tells us: "I was concerned about Erin. I was afraid she'd have post-traumatic stress disorder after the Jessica incident." Does this show offer combat pay?
Out on the beach, Erin and Vanessa are wearing their wet suits and sitting with Michele, who's sporting her favorite train conductor hat again. Erin isn't looking forward to showing the Princess of Darkness how to surf because there's nothing in it for her except enduring hours of whining.
Erin: I don't want to be teaching someone how to f—ing surf. For a girlfriend, maybe. If I were getting laid, maybe.
Erin. She's such a giver.
Michele: [Jessica's] sort of still in denial about it. I mean, it's gonna take until that contest happens and she fails, and she'll finally maybe, possibly, admit that she doesn't know what she's doing.
Vanessa: I think there's probably no bigger motivator than public humiliation.
Erin takes her friends' advice and resolves to hold Jessica's hand until the competition. While the others surf it up, she stays behind with the Princess D and practices "pop-ups" with her on the sand. Vanessa gleefully reminds them to stretch their groins before running into the water.
"Do you, um, not have wax on the back of your board here?" Erin asks as she runs her hand across Jessica's smooth board. Wax provides traction on surfboards, and Jessica's board is oddly traction-free.
Jessica says, no, she doesn't wax it because she doesn't really "go back there." What kind of world would this be if bikini waxers thought that way? Not a world I want to live in, Skippy.
Erin explains that's where your toes grip the board, so yeah, some traction might be a good idea. Then, Erin does the unimaginable. She puts wax on Jessica's board for her. Did you feel that? Hell just froze over.
Jessica says "Thank you" as she stands idly by watching Erin wax her board. "You're welcome," Erin replies through clenched teeth. No wonder she needs a night guard.
After Jessica's board is brought up to spec, Erin offers to forego her own surfing to swim out with Jessica and push her into stuff. My suggestions: some pokey coral, a group of jelly fish, a yellow cloud in the water.
Princess D skips happily into the water with a new enthusiasm. Feeling smug as all get out, she approves of Erin 's leadership now that she's doing things the Jessica Way.
Jessica: Definitely, it was a big breakthrough between Erin and I. She definitely did a 180, completely flipped around. And honestly, she proved to me that she can be a coach and she will be there for me.
Proving it to Princess. That's what it's all about.