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Recap: BravoTV’s ‘Below Deck,’ The I’m Not Your Geisha Boy Edition

Tonight’s episode of BravoTV’s “Below Deck” should have been titled “What Not to Do in the Service Industry.” Then everybody watching could have treated that hot mess like a live tutorial on how not to behave toward paying guests on a multi-million dollar charter yacht.

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No seriously, as somebody who owns a company that provides wedding planning services on an island not terribly far away from where the Ohana was based for this episode, I can assure you that, normally, when you tour the islands, you won’t be treated rudely by the service staff. And in most places, we’ll even be nice to you. Also, we’ll actually check our staff and vendor references to make sure we’re not hiring complete morons to run your event.

Are these new guests rude and vocal about their displeasure? Yes. Are they tacky? Yes. Do some of them have naked modeling portfolios on the Internet? Yes. Do any of these things make it okay to treat them rudely? Absolutely not. If the situation is out of control, the Captain needs to address it. But at this point, even though he does it badly, all the jerk-wad primary guest is asking for is an attitude adjustment by the head steward.

And let’s face it, Kate needs it. I know I wasn’t the only one laughing my ass of watching as she gushed about her “peppy and fun” guests and talked about how the primary guest, Dean, was her “charter guest soul mate.” Of course, simultaneously, Dean is saying she’s a bitch with a lousy attitude. Way to read the guests, boss! Good Lord! She couldn’t have been farther off.

“I can tell he has high standards – me too!” Kate brags. Oh, if she only knew what was coming, she never would have said that.

As usual, she was unprepared for the trip. A last minute raid on private gardens to steal flowers for your yacht doesn’t score any points with me. You’re supposed to order those things, Kate. The guests have paid for them. Running around a small island with a camera crew in your Ohana uniform shirts, trespassing in private gardens, is not the way to fix your mistake. I hope production got permission.

Much like your mojito disaster last week, you’re teaching the women working for you very bad habits. That it’s okay to do a half-assed job prepping for a charter and it’s okay to fake it or steal to cover your little “oopsies.” How about some real leadership and owning up to your mistakes? Maybe you should have made a phone call the day before to order flowers rather than sitting around on your ass talking about how fabulous you are.

“When I have a day off I want to feel pretty and special,” Kate tells us on their sailing adventure. So do we all, Kate. But first you have to be responsible and take care of what needs to be done. Don’t you always need fresh flowers between charters? Was that a surprise to you? Or do you think the next guests owe it to you for you to have your day off in peace? I’m just disgusted by her attitude. So are the guests. But let’s come back to that.

The guests are an unusual group – the guy who chartered the boat owns a club and the guests are his employees. He’s given nobody any preference choices or options and has been very specific about what he wants in the paperwork forwarded to the boat. Timing is everything to this guy, which we see when he bitches that they haven’t left the dock fast enough after boarding.

It’s obvious the guests are going to be a challenge but that’s when the entire crew needs to rise above it and just do their jobs, with a smile. A real one. You can think what you want in your head, and say what you want when it’s over, but while you’re working their charter, you have to bring your A-game, even if you’re just the “help” to the B-team.

Captain Lee didn’t help the situation when he ordered Kelley to ride the waterslide with a mounted ho, but at least Kelley didn’t do anything to continue the illusion he was interested afterwards. Those ladies got the message because they stopped stalking him. And he’s made himself as scarce as possible.

By the way, nobody is a fan of that waterslide, although it looks like mad fun. It’s the kind of thing the crew would never set up for themselves on a day off because it takes too much work. I know that feeling. When we have a day off, we don’t want to do anything but sleep. Of course, I make sure I have my flowers and mint ordered for the next day before I nap. #justsayin

“The waterslide is five hours of pain and suffering for one hour of guest enjoyment,” Eddie moans. But at least he didn’t have to become the party boy for the guests. That was poor Kelley. Sexual harassment anyone? But he didn’t speak up and say no for himself. He needs to let the Captain know where his boundaries are.

“If you had a maid at your house, would you ask her to straddle you and ride down a slide? No. That’s not my job. I’m not your geisha boy,” Kelley is hot in his interview about the entire incident. Jennice assumes he enjoyed it and stomps off, leaving us to believe she is more than just a little “confused” about how she feels about her bunkmate these days.

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Let’s face it, the whole crew was in a crap mood when the charter started. Nobody was happy that Andrew got a full share of the tip from the prior cruise, but most of them aren’t happy to be picking up his share of the work either. Captain Lee fired him right after the tip split. Andrew looked like he was going to cry when he got the news.

“You can’t learn on the fly here. If you don’t already bring it to the table, you’re toast and that’s what happened to Andrew. He brought a knife to a gun fight,” Captain Lee explains afterward. Turns out, Andrew’s not upset.

“I’m glad that I did this…” Andrew says. He thinks he’s a “yachtie” now. Seriously? Are you glad that you lied and got away with it for a few days or glad you got to be on television or glad you got fired? What exactly are you GLAD about, Andrew? I’m glad you’re gone. You were a danger to the rest of the crew and the passengers.

“That was the one thing he took like a man,” Kat says of Andrew’s departure, and it was funny.

The first night’s dinner doesn’t go well because Chef Ben is working on his own clock – he’s a pro and he likes to take his time preparing and plating the food. Most yacht guests appreciate the long, drawn-out, relaxing dinner time, but not Dean and his group. They’re hungry and getting grumpy.

“Have you guys ever seen a hungry Korean woman?” one guest jokingly threatens.

“I don’t think Ben realizes how on time these guests expect dinner to be,” Kat opines. “It’s not looking good for Ben.” Her deep thought of the night.

The guests encourage their host to go complain and he does. But he’s not nearly as nasty as we all expected him to be. He’s straight out bitchy behind their backs but when he has these little meetings with them, he treats them respectfully and makes reasonable requests. Remember, the crew doesn’t know what he’s saying about them behind their backs so Kate’s responses are a little over the top from the first time they’re critical.

“The timing on the meal has been slow… the natives are being restless… let’s work on it for tomorrow,” Dean tells Ben and Kate. End of day, his guests aren’t happy. So he’s not happy. But he was polite and professional about it. What we’re hearing him say to his guests when the crew is not around isn’t something the crew was hearing in real time.

When dinner arrives, they’re all happy for a few minutes til a guest claims to find plastic in her dinner. It’s actually off a bottle they opened themselves next to the plate, but before that’s discovered, it’s high drama for the crew.

“So the guests are getting a little bit dramatic. I know there’s no way that plastic was on the plate when we brought it up,” Kate snarks. “I’m just going to take it downstairs, pick it out and give it back.” Even if you’re right, that’s just plain old tacky. I’m sure EVERYBODY spending tens of thousands of dollars to charter a yacht wants her aboard. Not!

Chef Ben calls bullshit because the plastic was clean and when he goes up to address it with his dinner guests, they’re very nice about it and admit it was probably their mistake. Ben stalks off feeling vindicated, but he controlled his mouth and that was a brilliant move.

“If plastic is found in the food, it’s a really bad reflection on me,” Ben says. “I’ve never even had a hair on one of my dishes.”

“Can I get a meeting with you and the chef?” Dean asks Kate after dinner.

He politely asks them to pick up the timing and it’s a much less contentious conversation than expected. Ben, for a fact, does up his game so that he can be ready for breakfast at the ass-crack of dawn. Predictably, the guests sleep late and leave him standing at the ready in the galley. But he was there and he was ready. And it gave Kat plenty of extra time to hang out and flirt with him. When’s that going to happen, by the way? #inevitable

But it doesn’t matter how many waterslides the crew sets up or how fabulously on-time the food is for the remainder of the charter if all of the guests are getting bummed out by Kate’s perpetually shitty attitude. She really just doesn’t smile.

I understand she’s owned up to having “resting bitch face” syndrome, but really, learn to smile or get a new job. You suck at the one you have. It’s not enough to do the work – you MUST smile too. This is a concept that Kate rejects violently.

Remember all her ridiculous “He’s my charter guest soul mate” crap she was gushing at the beginning of the charter? If she liked them, why wasn’t she nice to them? I just do not understand.

Unlikely “soul mate” Dean doesn’t agree that they’re besties. He’s going to have to talk to her about her shitty attitude after breakfast because it’s bringing his entire group down.

Truth – this guy seems like a bully. And dressing her down in front of a table of people was harsh. But he’d already spoken to her privately two or three times so what exactly was he supposed to do to make an impression? I think he should have just gone straight to Captain Lee to complain. I have a feeling Kate has done a certain amount of bullying in her life too. Apparently, she can dish it out, but she can’t take it.

“I don’t mean to ambush you in front of anyone else,” he begins. “You don’t seem happy. You don’t seem happy when you’re out here,” Dean tells her that she seems miserable to be working for them and it’s ruining their trip.

“You’re scaring all of us,” Dean says. “You’re beautiful when you smile and you’re happy. Otherwise, you’re coming off kinda bitchy.” Yep, that’s pretty on target.

Kate apologizes and explains that if she’s not smiling, it’s because she takes her job seriously. So seriously, in fact, that in retaliation for the dressing down she’s just received, she goes into the main cabin and creates a penis towel as decoration on Dean’s bed. Way to take that job seriously, Kate. You go girl!

“I am this close to losing it,” Kate says. “I’m on the verge of tears.” Boohoo, go cry to somebody else. All of us just watched you be rude to these people for two days. You may think that you’re being polite and professional but your total disdain for your guests shows in every move and facial expression. The only person Kate is fooling is Kate.

“I’ve been humiliated. I’m rage filled,” Kate blusters. Get over yourself. This isn’t all about you, it’s about working as a team for the tip at the end. She cancels the pirate game out of revenge (ooo nice one, like they care) and proceeds to do her own malicious payback with the penis on the bed. Teasers for next week show that does not go over well with the guests or her own crew. Found out on Twitter tonight that her crew didn’t even know what she was up to at that point.

The crew is mad because Kate’s lack of professionalism is threatening all of their livelihoods, but she doesn’t get it. Teasers for next week are fascinating as they turn on her. I’m ready to see the rest of them address her attitude. They’re all smiling, constantly. Why can’t she?

“My crew is valuing money over me,” Kate wails. Yes, Kate, because most of them are professionals trying to do their jobs. You were lucky enough to be CAST in this ROLE and you’re playing it to your heart’s content, but also to the detriment of the rest of your team. They’re not your friends. They’re your co-workers. There’s a difference.

It was obvious from the nasty tweets flying amongst the cast crew of “Below Deck” tonight that this is not a happy team now that everything is said and done. We’ll have to see what else goes down in future episodes to make things get that mean. I’ve honestly never seen a reality show cast live-tweeting so meanly before at each other while the show airs. Usually they just ignore the people they don’t like. Not on “Below Deck.” They believe in below-the-belt. And it’s a turnoff to some of their viewers.


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