Jemima J Sucks Week: More about Jemima J!

So the book Jemima J is about Jemima Jones, who, at 5’7″ and 217 pounds (p. 136), is the fattest woman in Kilburn, England, and maybe the rest of London, too. Possibly also the only fat woman there. Apparently.

Her massive fat is a result of hiding candy bars in her desk (p. 3), making poor choices at the salad bar (p. 17), and an insufferably generic childhood pathology (pp. 2, 112). Her considerable girth makes it difficult for her to sit in ordinary chairs (p. 5), completely rules out wearing bootcut jeans (p, 57), has been known to increase at a rate of two to three pounds overnight (p. 64), and has pretty much prevented any kind of sexual enjoyment whatsoever in her life (p. 18). As a result of her immense size, her leisure activties are usually limited to sitting in her room and cutting out pictures of supermodels from magazines (p. 2), and wallowing in self-pity (pp. 1, 2, 4, 8, 9, 10, 14-17, 19, 21, 22, 31, 38, 40-47, 51, 58-62, et. al).

Yeah, not only does her weight keep her from telling jokes (p. 23), applying flattering makeup (p. 15), or, really, ever experiencing more than a split second of unadulterated happiness (pp. 1-371), it also pretty much keeps anything remotely interesting from happening in the first third of the book, where pretty much every twenty pages or so, an opportunity for a meet-cute encounter with her dull love interest, Ben, totally fails to happen because old fat-ass Jemima keeps having to stop somewhere to stuff her face. Poor Jemima!

Oh, and then it gets worse.

Suck-Ass Book Club

If you know me at all you probably know I love to hate the book Jemima J by Jane Green. This book is ass. Have you read it? It’s ass. It’s puke. The fact that this sputum is “chick lit” is really no excuse whatsoever for the rectangular 7.96″ x 5.26″ stain it leaves on the world. It is not good. Not at all.

I highly recommend hating this book. If you’ve ever been overweight for a significant portion of your life, you can hate this book. Anyone who’s ever tried to lose more than ten pounds can hate this book. Women who liked Bridget Jones’s Diary enough to tolerate the whole irritating discourse about Renee Zellwegger’s fat can hate this book. Guys who get mildly turned on by the zaftig and sexily offered-up legs and ass on the cover can hate this book. You’re all perfectly welcome to hate this book just because I said so, but you can also hate it for yourself by obtaining and reading a used copy, presumably from scores of other people who also hate Jemima J. Or, if you only have time for half-assed hate, you can read and hate just the back cover and the opening chapters for free. Go on, take a look.

Today Rob talks about how he hates the movie Simon Birch so much that he feels like it was made especially to upset him, even though, he says, the filmmakers could have just called him on the phone and fucked with him for free. I feel the same way about Jemima J. Jane Green ought to have just come over to my house and bugged the shit out of me. She could’ve poked me and said, “It’s a shame, dove, you have such a lovely face,” and she’d tell me not to eat so many bacon sandwiches. And then sat on my couch and in between continually tsk-tsking about how bloody miserable my life must be, dropping unsolicited diet hints, and laying it on thick with the cloying Britishisms like “Phwooargh,” blathered on and on for hours about some people she knows, in pointless anecdotes filled with insipid details about their outfits and accessories and peppered with countless stupid asides about their personal habits as if I gave even half a dessicated crap about these morons or her inane gossipy dildoheaded opinion of them.

Instead, she wrote Jemima fucking J. I hated it when I first read it; I hate it today, and I plan to hate it tomorrow through Friday. It’s the Poundyblog theme for this week!

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The deleted-email crisis I mentioned here has been resolved, so I guess I’ll use this post for shout outs from the past week or so: Shiman! Rebecky! I’m glad I met you both in person finally. And !!! I am glad I saw you play at Empty Bottle, and boy, were you guys ever sweaty.

Meta relapse! Googlesmacking!

M. Giant at Velcrometer is holding a search phrase contest. He got the idea from a reader who said he and his friends were deliberately trying to get to Velcrometer via Google by way of a search phrase bizarre enough for M. Giant to notice it in his referral logs and mention it on his site. Lots of people take note of the weird search words in their site stats. But I think the big secret here is that apparently a lot of us like to create strange search phrases and try to aim them towards specific targets like little guided missiles of freaky garble. We send them out as secret messages or as the sort of insult you say between coughs. And by “we” I actually mean “me” and “some people I know.” And we call it “Googlesmacking.” Because, see, you’re using Google to smack someone.

So how does one Googlesmack? Let’s say, for instance, that one day you find yourself estranged from your better judgment long enough to read a really inane weblog post, perhaps one as vapid as the fictional excerpt below:

saw cappucino boy again. he is kinda boring but he is cute & i know that’s stupid & i think to my self ‘misty why are you so chicken? dump him’ but i am a very complicated person. hmm. also today i got email from some nasty guy who saw my body piercing pics.yuk. he has no life. thats it for now i am tired from doing stairmaster for 90 minutes but my thighs look awesome.

It’s true you could just put something blunt in your eye to keep yourself from reading stuff like this, but why should you? It won’t help you feel better. So study the entry. Start with the subject’s name: “Misty.” What word would you like to see go with “Misty”? “Nasty” is good. However, a search on just the phrase nasty Misty will yield about 150,000 results, all of them porn. (Seriously.) Thus you’ll have to add more words from the original page to make the search phrase unique. Add “chicken.” Add some nice adjectives and verbs. Eventually you’ll have constructed a sentiment like STUPID MISTY HAS NASTY CHICKEN THIGHS. Type it into Google and see if it gets you to Misty’s annoying Livejournal.

Bonus if it’s the first or only listing on the search results page. And once you see it on that Google page, you don’t have to click over to Misty’s site so that she sees it in her site stats. It may suffice to know that you’ve managed to alter the universe in some little way, that you’ve gotten Google to divine some kind of truth about Misty. Where else are you going to find pathetic passive-aggressive fun like that?

Try Googlesmacking your friends! Your employer! Yourself! Go for it.

Maybe this week I'll write about the city,

seeing as how I linked to that Chicago stuff on Monday.

I don’t ride the El much now but I’ve been riding it for as long as I can remember. I can recall one train ride that sticks in my head as being a definitive First Time memory, but it couldn’t have been my first ride; it’s probably a composite of all the times my grandmother took me shopping on State Street. We took the Congress line in, the line that runs along the expressway; we’d go on a bridge and through a turnstile and down a long, long ramp. Standing on the platform in the middle of the expressway was like standing on the deck of a huge ship; there was wind and a quiet that seemed to flap open and shut with the surges of traffic.

When a train would come it never looked like the concept of train I was taught: no engine, no caboose. There was nothing that indicated which direction it would go in. I had to trust my grandma knew the hell what she was doing. She did.

I would sit near the window. One time I rested my head against it and pressed my face to the glass. “Don’t do that,” my grandma said. “You don’t know what someone’s done on that window. Someone could have spat on it…. someone could have thrown up on it.” This really made no sense to me. It was a window. I spent the rest of the ride staring at the glass and trying to figure out how you could look at it without looking through.