Last night was the finale penultimate episode of The Hills' fourth season. There was a big departure and a big wedding. If you're curious about the dim proceedings, journey after the jump.

Yes it was an evening of beginnings and endings last night, as dear friends departed for near-foreign shores, as other non-friends departed for actual foreign shores, and our listless heroine sat still in the middle like some dying star, repelling away all moons, planets, and other celestial matter with her pulsating anti-gravity. Srsly. I thought this show was about Lauren?

Well, it wasn't last night! Whitney, our cow-eyed once-supporting fashion friend, learned (shock!) that she did in fact get the sweet gig at Diane von Furstenberg in New York. So she has to move to The City, where she'll learn to navigate both The City its physical self, and The City of her own complex heart. "Should I take a cab to the grocery store?" she wondered, as if she will ever buy groceries. Of course, as you know, this is all preamble to her new show called... The City, so it wasn't so much of a "goodbye" as it was a new, strange hello. She'll no longer be casting her saturnine gaze upon Lauren while she rattles off the latest social injustice, but she will be still visible, striking out on her own. With a camera crew. And producers. And Olivia Palermo. See you in two weeks, Witz.

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And of course the other, major story of last evening was the celebrated nuptials of one Heidi Montag and one lump of Silly Puddy named Spencer Pratt. The barely-acquaintances-at-this-point couple zipped off to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico for a be-bathing suited drinking party. There was Heidi teetering out onto the veranda in her teeny-tiny orange bikini, champagne in hand, like some sort of bad rap video or gangster movie. Ol' Fleshbeard leered in his way, and they nestled into a gnarly embrace. Meanwhile back at home, Spencerina was worried to the point of further dumb-face about the two, who had mysteriously disappeared. She went to Audrina's house, for some inexplicable reason, to discuss it. And Justin Bobby was there. "Maybe you should put some posters up," he deadpanned, in what was probably the best ad-lib of the whole season. Well done, JB!

But no, instead Audrina went clomping off to Whitney's goodbye party (where her moms cried, for like real, it was human) and muttered to the other girls, "so Heidi and Spencer went missing" (I pictured, upon their return, Angelina Jolie pounding her chest and saying "No, I wan't MY Fleshbeard. MY Fleshbeard!!"), and Lauren just basically went "pfft," and the subject was closed.

Didn't matter anyway, because the tanned and hided couple was gargling stupid old Patron while Spencer spoke awful pidgin Spanish to the waiters and tried to coax his drunken beloved into tying the knot. Eventually, after getting the nodding go-ahead from Cindy the line producer, Heidi slurred a slurpy yes ("I'll show you what a wife does," she said vomitously). And off they were.

Because they're such retiring people, we didn't actually get to see the wedding. (ThankfullyUs Weekly did!!) What we did get to see was the aftermath, while Spencer lay on the bed watching the ceremony on vidja cassette, and Heidi, "so hungover," roamed the hotel room looking like a person lost entirely.

So now we've nearly (almost there!!) come to the end of this thing what was. And what, if anything, is the sum of these last four months when added together, all slushy and gummy? What have you done in your life, while all of this played out? Since August 18th, 2008, what love has been shared? What secrets kept and slipped? What dreams had, what bills paid, what lovely views looked upon? What car rides, what meals? What laughing friends warmed you, what sad starry nights made you wonder? What people wandered away forever, who inched their way closer, who made you feel whole, and peaceful?

And are we to graft any of this wealth of experience onto these Hills, these well-lit characters? Or are we to take something off of them and apply it, like a decal or a button, onto our lives? Should we be listening to the notes they're not playing, imagining the negative spaces created by the circular rooms of (fake) memory and (fake) feeling built inside all these square boxes?

Really, I think we're just supposed to watch these carelessly led lives so we can learn, somehow, to protect our own meandering existences. What's fake about everything shown here—the Burrito King, the pool party fights, the sunshiney grimaces, the Sisters—is maybe just a muddled reflection of what's real out there. Maybe this is a study in opposites, meant to teach us that while these people lay their lives out to bake and bleach under the harsh faux-sun of camera lights, maybe we should learn to hold ours scared sacred, to use them well. What terrific, scary things these lives are! What ancient yet fragile gifts!

Or maybe, you know, we're meant to watch as Heidi and Spencer make slurry vows and devilish bargains with an off-screen collector of souls, the mighty ocean churning forever beneath their window—as true and eternal a thing as ever there was in this old blue world—and say to ourselves:

Man, I really hate these people.

Hah, Update: Not actually the finale! Wishful thinking on my part! But I'm not watching it next week. I don't think. So, have fun.