While I know that the 36 million people who voted on "American Idol" this week didn't make their selections solely to please me, I must say that I had the all-too-unfamiliar sensation of feeling that they had.
Once we got through the beginning of the show (a terribly unexciting number about "letting you go" from our favorite beat boxer Blake Lewis, the news that Paula's new single is somehow number one on iTunes and Simon's inability to congratulate his fellow judge on such a feat), it was elimination time.
Ryan started off slowly, informing David Cook in a move straight out of Randy Jackson's repertoire that he'd spoken to Lionel Richie that day and the crooner had "loved" Cook's performance. Cook was, of course, safe. David Archuleta was also, of course, safe (our boy wonder was a bit under-featured on the show, but when we saw him, he was all dimpled cuteness). Jason Castro was also in.
We had some flashbacks to the girls' performances where we were able to re-witness Paula struggling to make sense and Simon being uncharacteristically complimentary.
Kady Malloy, despite her brilliant Britney imitation, was out. And she was due to leave: the girl, as Simon has said, never really found her own voice. While Asia'h Epperson broke down in sobs at the news, she might have — spoiler alert — better budgeted those tears for later.
David Hernandez was safe, ditto Michael Johns. Luke Menard's time on the stage had, however, come to an end. While Paula seemed to be the only person who found this news disturbing — she stood up and uttered phrases meant to make him believe this wasn't the end, but the beginning — the rest of us endured another version of "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" (that's two times too many in as many days, in my opinion).
Thankfully, Ramiele Malubay made it through, as did Carly Smithson and Amanda Overmyer (who continued to look as unenthused as possible; her two guests wore similarly dour expressions).
Then it was time for Asia'h to get cut, and despite this being absolutely appropriate, the turn of events inspired another only semi-sensical litany from Paula, in which she called Asia'h "tenacious" (which is actually — points for Paula — probably the best word that can be used to describe someone who auditions for "Idol" two days after her dad dies).
But Paula, it turns out, wasn't the only one devastated by the news: Danny Noriega had barely wiped his Asia'h tears away when he was informed that his "Tainted Love" hadn't cut it and the far-less-charming (but, quite honestly, more talented) Chikezie was going through instead of him.
By this point, Ramiele Malubay was sobbing so furiously that the girls seemed to be taking turns holding her, as if she were a colicky baby. While I love this girl and find her sadness over people getting eliminated sweet, she's got to start holding it together. Isn’t she noticing that the people who cry are all getting the old heave-ho?
And I say that girl can't leave — at least not if the voting results are going to continue to please me.
Anna David is a freelance writer. Her novel, "Party Girl," is in stores.