When Sammi returned to the Shore house last night, Ronnie instantly ran outside to the smoking porch. He was scared, anxious, perhaps even suffering from a mild panic attack. These next few minutes would be critical. As we all know, the first time you see your ex after a break-up, there's always an undertone of competition. Who's less awkward? Who looks better? Who's going to cry first? Well, Ron knew he wouldn't cry. No, sir! Sure, some tears were shed last week, and the week before, and the week before. But Ronnie had transformed. No longer was he Crybaby-Hulk, the Sad Gorilla Clown. He was Single-Ronnie. And so, Ron regained his composure. He got a pep talk from the boys. He took a deep breath. He gobbled up a handful of Xenadrine to gin up some courage, probably. And he walked back into the house.
Inside, the ladies were having a gab session. Snooki was so happy she could cry. Deena was ecstatic, which means "Super happy and really happy." Ron leisurely sashayed up next to Sammi. He was in a great mood. He had muscles the size of a human head, and a human head the size of a bowling ball. "Hey Sam," he said, sounding like Joe Cool, "You look good." Sammi looked at him as if she were great hunter, and he were a stuffed tiger that she re-gifted to her least favorite nephew. "You look pale," said Sam. Keep it together now, Ron-Ron. Don't let her get to you. Say something funny. "I just saw a ghost, that's why!" said Ronnie. No one laughed. It wasn't funny. "Ha!" he said. "Ha! Hahaha! Ha!" Sammi 1, Ronnie 0.
The gang decided to go out to Karma to celebrate Sammi's return. Sammi just wanted to have a night with her ladies. "Cheers," she yelled, "to being single!" Ronnie was lurking on the other side of the bar. Then he was lurking right up next to her. Ronnie was like a kid in a candy store, except the candy was Sammi and the weird old man who hangs out by the lollipops was The Situation. Ronnie tried to be nice to Sammi. "I don't want to smother you," he said smotheringly. Sammi asked him casually, "Are you leaving?" Ron: "No! Do you want me to?" And then he left. Sammi 2, Ronnie 0.
But let's leave the sad tale of Sam and Ron for a moment and focus on the other great Jersey Shore romance. I'm talking about Vinny and Snooki, the show's resident will-they-or-won't-they-or-did-they-why-God-why couple. Shnookums had a fever, and the only prescription was more Vin-Vin. "I actually named his penis Moby Dick," she explained. This was actually a rather adroit literary reference. In Herman Melville's classic novel -- which is kind of like The Dirty Dozen, except on a boat, and instead of killing Nazis they kill whales -- the Great White Whale represents everything you desire that is nevertheless just a little bit unattainable. It simultaneously motivates you and destroys you.
In a funny way, that's kind of what Vinny and Snooki's relationship is like. Roll with me on this for a second. They are clearly very good friends, with a curious flirty-sibling-coworker relationship that looks a little bit like unrequited love. I think it's fair to say that they keep each other sane…but it's also fair to say that they both ruin each other's chances of having a good relationship with someone else. No man Snooki smushes will ever be quite as adorable as noble Vin-Vin. No girl Vinny smashes will ever be quite as funny as kooky Snook-Snook. Vinny and Snooki are like a pair of Great White Whales who are great friends, but are also mortal enemies. Somewhere in America, my high school English teacher is screaming. Guys, let's all read Moby Dick this weekend.
NEXT: J-Woww's overactive bladder