I hate to mark my return to these pages on a down note, but I came upon the NYT’s review of the Washingtonienne and almost slipped a disc racing to the keyboard before my reaction became muted by the weekend’s latest Tom Cruise flummox and Pedro’s clear command of the House that Ruth Built Only to be Moved by George. Moving makes me cranky. Jason Giambi does do. Let’s get it all out there before someone else publishes a novel as insipid as The Washingtonienne. I fear the waiting time will be short.
Alexandra Jacobs writes for the New York Observer. I like her. I like NYO. Ms. Jacobs is an intelligent woman living in the Big Apple where sophistication drips like fluid from an overworked air-conditioner. Maybe it’s the heat or maybe Ms. Jacobs wrote her review with one eye on the Yes Network. Let me quote from her review: “It’s amusing to see Washington fixed by such a vodka-gimlet eye; we can all recognize the kind of government geek who refuses to remove his security badge; ‘how canine’ sniffs Jackie, or posts photos of himself taken with famous politicians on a “Me Wall.”
The vodka gimlet line was good, but that was the reviewer’s, not the author’s. She’s Jessica Cutler, the once and future blogger now turned moron novelist. Perhaps a big gold badge should be afixed to the book’s dust jacket, Warning: This book contains material written by a quasi-famous person. There is a risk of brain damage if opened. While the risk may be slight, permanent cultural damage is assured.
Another training wheels novelist is launched. There is a reference in the review to Scarlett O’Hara. It appears in close proximity to the part where the author’s alter ego is thrilled to receive four hundred dollars as an apre-sex gratuity. Apparently that’s an hourly rate. Hell, plumbers make better money than that and have the courtesy to not write ‘novels’ about it.
There’s always been a cottage industry in books like this. Unfortunately the cottage is getting full, crowding out worthwhile novels with stuff like this. Okay, rant over. I need a Vodka gimlet, a copy of Gone With the Wind and a brand new Me Wall.