Whether you know her from her infamous mid-limo-introduction outfit change, her job title as a "Sport Fishing Enthusiast", or her "Is she going to fall over during the rose ceremony?" performance, The Bachelor's Tara Eddings won a spot in all of our hearts on that cold January 5th day during the premier of this season of The Bachelor.
When I finally resolved myself to watching this season of The Bachelor, I wasn't really sure what to expect. I had never watched it before, and I had zero idea who this "Chris from Iowa" was. I was just looking to watch some babes get overly dramatic while all vying for the hand of the luckiest dude in America. What I found was that I actually fucking hated the show from the beginning. The introductions seemed staged and boring, and they just seemed to go on and on and on. Flat out, everyone bored me.
But Tara. Tara was different. And while I'm sure all the bachelorettes are great gals, none of them had the moxie of Tara. While Tara isn't my spirit animal, she's everything I hope my future wife's spirit animal would be. So I knew I needed to talk to her. Through some strategic Twitter follows and direct messages, I found Tara to be much like she came off on the show — kind, entertaining, and #UpForWhatever. When I asked for an interview with her, she couldn't have seemed more excited.
Sunday Scaries: Alright, Tara, what happened the first night? Were you just getting loose? Was it your nerves getting the best of you? Something else?
Tara Eddings: The first night we came into the house was very exciting and nerve-racking all at the same time. I would have to say that the nerves definitely got the best of me. It was a very long night, as we all remember, with the most girls in Bachelor history to come out of the limos. We (the bachelorettes) had access to amazing catered food that we could enjoy throughout the night along with whatever alcohol we could’ve wanted. With my nerves, I had lost my appetite, and all that I could stomach happened to be whiskey. And obviously drinking whiskey through all hours of the night with no food in my stomach, well, we all see how that ended.
Sunday Scaries: I did the same thing on New Year's Eve this year. When I woke up in the morning, I had to coyly ask someone I was with if we actually went to the bar or not (we did) and later received a text that said, "Do you even remember kissing me at midnight?", which I didn't. Over-serving yourself happens to the best of us. No judging over here.
That being said, some of the girls didn't seem happy that you were given a rose considering your state. Did you get some extra satisfaction from that when Chris gave you the rose?
Tara: Oh yes, there were plenty of girls that were not happy at all that I (the drunk girl) got the rose, especially those who didn’t get a rose that first ceremony. I did get some satisfaction that I did get a rose. I would’ve been very upset with myself if Chris didn’t give me a second chance. I am extremely lucky and grateful that he gave me that rose, and would be able to show him that I am more than just a country girl who loves her whiskey!
Sunday Scaries: For those who didn't watch, Bachelor Chris left with Host Chris Harrison to discuss whether or not he was going to give you a rose, given your blood alcohol content. When they left the ceremony, did you have any idea that the conversation was about you?
Tara: I had no idea that Chris and Chris Harrison would be leaving the room to discuss if Chris should give me the rose or not. Chris had left the rose ceremony a few other times, not just that one time. Chris was standing in front of 30 beautiful women that he had just met that evening. I don’t think anyone could have been able to remember 30 names and pick them out of the 30 girls to give them their rose. So it is my thinking that maybe Chris had left the ceremony a few times to discuss with Chris Harrison who was who. But all in all, during one of those times when Chris had left the room, I had no idea that he would be talking with Chris Harrison about him giving me a rose or not… but I am so glad he did!
Sunday Scaries: When you first got out of the limo, you were absolutely crushing some jean shorts and cowboy boots before changing into a trademark little black dress. How did you come up with the outfit change idea? Do you think showing your country side helped Chris in choosing?
Tara: Well after discussing with the producers about the idea of exiting the limo with the outfit that I wore, we figured that it was the best way to really show him who I was. I wanted to find a way to stand out within all of the other amazingly stunning women. I wanted to be remembered. I am so glad that I took that leap of faith and exited the limo in my jean shorts and cowboy boots. It represents who I am and how I was raised. And I honestly think that it did help with my chances of receiving that rose. If I had not done that entrance, I don't think Chris would have given me a rose, and I would’ve gone home that first night.
Sunday Scaries: The Bachelor listed your occupation as a "Sport Fishing Enthusiast." I need to know more about this, which means I need to ask you the same question I asked my ex-girlfriend's new flame who was an aspiring rapper — is this your actual career or just a hobby?
Tara: I am so glad that you have asked this question! I am 100% a “sport fishing enthusiast.” But this is just my hobby. I am actually a Partnership Manager for United Surgical Partners International. I oversee the utilization of surgical centers here in South Florida, and help with their marketing.
Sunday Scaries: Damn. That's some responsibility. How'd you start fishing? What type of fishing do you normally do?
Tara: I have been fishing my whole life. My family had a cabin on a small lake back up in Washington State where I grew up. My twin and I would go out on the water with our Dad, Joe, as often as we could. We would catch little lake trout while tolling behind our little boat with a 15hp Johnson on the back. Then, in 2006, I graduated high school and moved down to Miami where I attended the University of Miami. I had friends who had introduced me to fishing then, and I realized that the fish caught here on the coast in the Atlantic ocean were a lot larger than the 10 in rainbow trout we caught back home. I was instantly “hooked.”
Sunday Scaries: You absolutely crushed that pun.
Tara: Now, 9 years after I moved down here, I'm still fishing as often as I can. We fish for pretty much everything. This time of year is tournament time for sailfish. And while fishing for the sailfish, we also fish for dolphin (also know as mahi mahi and dorado) king fish, wahoo, yellow fin and blue fin Tuna, cobia, and much more. I also enjoy deep dropping for swordfish, queen snapper and mystic grouper, and trolling for marlin. I also love to free dive and spearfish. When in season, I love diving for lobster, hog fish snapper and grouper. It's a whole different world under the ocean. The ocean is the last truly quiet place on earth. I go there to escape and to unwind.
Sunday Scaries: You're speaking my language right now. I'm unbelievable at attending lobster dinners. Furthermore, every Sunday, I drink wine out of a Guy Harvey Tervis tumbler, so I'm essentially a sport fishing enthusiast myself.
I also saw on Twitter that you're a Chase Rice fan — being country girl from Florida, I have to assume you're big into country music. Who are your favorites?
Tara: I am a HUGE fan of country music. I am a country girl from Washington State, transplanted into South Florida. I have my favorite classics that I grew up on; Brooks and Dunn, Garth Brooks, Shania Twain, George Strait. But with so many amazing new country artists popping up on the charts, it’s hard to have just one favorite; Florida Georgia Line, ZBB, Blake Shelton, Miranda Lambert, Cole Swindell, Dan + Shay, Hunter Hayes and Sam Hunt. But the country men that I can’t live without would have to be Chase Rice, Eric Church.
Sunday Scaries: I see you, girl. Not sure if you've heard but I'm looking for a date to my friend's wedding in June. You in? Douchebag Pete and I rented a cottage that we're referring to as "The Slay Dungeon", if you're interested. Pete and I are also making the playlist, so we can include as much Eric Church and Chase Rice as your country heart desires.
Editor's Note: Tara declined to answer but I think she's just playing hard to get. And, in case you don't watch The Bachelor, Tara was unfortunately eliminated in episode two which officially ended my stint with the show. Tara over everything.