Still sizzling on the small screen |

Still sizzling on the small screen

Geraldine Haldner

Meeting a girl in Vail may be as easy as finding Sasquatch. There are signs they exist, but they are rarely seen out in the open.

A recent viewing of ABC’s “The Bachelorette” at Vail’s FuBar on Bridge Street drew the kind of crowd guys have been complaining about for decades – five guys for every girl, including the waitress.

Of the 20 females there, half only had eyes for Sutter, whose attendance lent a touch of reality to the arguably puzzling concept of watching a reality television show about romance in a nightclub.

The other half of the female party-goers, in fact, came “to rip on guys” and take advantage of $1 drinks. Or so they said.

“I don’t think so,” said 25-year-old Tracy when asked if Sutter is right about the tough odds guys face in Vail.

Tracy seemed more excited about the drink specials than watching Sutter and Trista Rehn, the star of “Bachelorette,” sharing a romantic walk in the park.

“We are here to drink,” she said with a shrug.

On one of her expeditions to the bar, she comes close to Sutter, sitting front and center. Her smile, however, is for the bartender, who hands her two beers.

Caryn, 29, said she couldn’t think of a reason why she would want to meet a local reality TV celebrity.

“I don’t know what I would say to him,” she said. “Hi Baby?”

“I wouldn’t be on a show like that,” added Tracy. “That’s a little desperate.”

Caryn said it shouldn’t be that hard for guys in Vail to get a date. Her requirements are singular, as well as simple.

“He has to be a fun one,” she said.

After a commercial break, several more females joined the scene, dropping the ratio to just 3-1.

“We hope it’ll get better as the evening wears on,” said Sutter’s 26-year-old brother, Chris.

Several girls eyed Chris Sutter suspiciously, comparing his features to the ones on the screen, where Rehn is busy shedding tears for having to whittle her courting crew from 15 to 10.

Chris Sutter wasn’t shy. Though not the one on TV, he said he is available, offering his phone number for print before reconsidering.

His brother “has been doing great with all the attention,” he said.

The crowd swooned over the on-screen Sutter reciting a self-composed poem in his bid for the bride. He had nothing to worry, said two nurses from Atlanta who had forced their way through a small crowd with the objective to meet the reality celebrity.

“He was just so nice,” said 27-year-old Alyson.

“He is definitely cute,” agreed her 28-year-old friend Susan.

And he didn’t seem offended by their determined approach, but rather humbled by the attention, they said.

Ryan Sutter, also 28, even agreed to pose for a snapshot.

“He said this is only the second time someone has asked him to pose for a picture,” Alyson said.

The crowd cheered as the local firefighter received a rose from Rehn, meaning he will go on to another episode this week in the quest to win Rehn’s heart, so the club’s willowy waitress doled out free Kamikazes to celebrate his success.

Then Ricky stumbled over.

“My boyfriend, the black dude, didn’t make it. Do you see the tear running down my face?” he said before turning on his heels and disappearing.

There was a bit of melancholy in the air, at least on-screen, where six guys are packing their bags and dealing with rejection.

But Sutter got a rose.

“I think he makes it to the final four,” said Betsy, 23, who came to see the show with her two girlfriends, Katie, 22 and Jordan, 23.

They weren’t impressed by the show’s concept, though; nor was their friend Nick, one of many males in this cavernous place.

“I think it is a little pathetic,” he said, adding that he wouldn’t go on a show like this, “not in a million years.”

So what are all these guys doing here, where barstools outnumber girls and two gorgeous men up front are already getting all the attention?

No one wants to admit he’s cruising for chicks – well maybe Ricky, but he can’t be found.

But then again, Ryan Sutter has male admirers, too.

“He is hot,” says Chris, a native of New Zealand. “I’m gay.”

Unlike his two nurse friends, however, Chris said he would not be trying to meet Ryan Sutter in person. Considering that the show is supposed to end in holy matrimony between a woman and a man, he says, he isn’t wasting his charm.

Finding love on TV, he adds, “seems a bit lame.”

“It’s an act. It’s not real. How can you fall in love with someone knowing everyone is acting,” he asks.

But Chris doesn’t live in Vail, a tough place to play it real – at least for guys, it seems.

So, tell me again, where were those Sasquatch footprints?

Geraldine Haldner covers Vail, Minturn and Red Cliff. She can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 602, or at

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