Last night, the ABC reality shows The Bachelor and The Bacheloretteheld an open casting call at The Greene Turtle in Locust Point. We sent one of our intrepid summer interns, Rebecca Kirkman, to cover the proceedings. This is her report:
“I want to go all the way—his last rose,” says Jennifer Barnes, a young woman with tattoos and scarlet lipstick in a white bodycon dress. We’re standing about halfway up a winding line of glossy-lipped, shiny-haired girls which twists and turns through The Greene Turtle at McHenry Row in Locust Point, all vying for a spot on ABC’s reality dating juggernaut The Bachelor. Barnes fidgets a little with her purse and tells me how nervous she is. “I want to get a drink but I don’t want to lose my place in line,” she says.
Overwhelmed waiters and bewildered patrons squeeze through a gap in the line, past a tan girl clutching a Bach-tini (cherry vodka, lemon-lime soda and a splash of grenadine) in one hand and a casting application in the other. It’s the first Baltimore casting call in The Bachelor history, and hundreds of Charm City singles showed up in everything from sexy cocktail dresses to jeans and T-shirts. After waiting for almost two hours, the love-seekers disappear in groups to be questioned on-camera about their hobbies and dating history. “I’m a huge Bachelor fan, like, obsessed” says Lisa Dannenberg, a blonde in a sundress, after her interview.
Outside girls sit and stand in clusters, checking their makeup and fanning themselves in the sticky 93-degree heat as they anxiously await their turns. Friends take shots at the bar to calm their nerves. Desperate not to seem desperate, everyone I talk to tries to downplay their presence—writing it off to nagging coworkers, living nearby, and even stumbling across the casting call on the way to get frozen yogurt. I overhear a young woman point to her friends and mischeviously say, “I tricked them into coming.”
The few guys in the crowd seem to be here more for the single girls than to find true love. One, with slickly parted hair and a pinstriped suit, yells to the bubbly, blonde bartender “I lied on my application!” Holding it up he reads “Do you drink alcoholic beverages? No!” And chuckles, “I hope I don’t get disqualified.”
No one has mentioned looking for love─It’s not even a question on the application. As she heads to her interview, a brunette teetering in sky-high heels dramatically flips her hair over her shoulder and proclaims to anyone listening, “It’s time for my close up!”