So while on a plane I did some math. At one chapter a week, I’ll not be finished with the book until next February. In the interest of being done before Christmas, I’ll try to fit in two chapters a week instead.
At the end of chapter nine, Lola claimed she needed to make a phone call in orde to excuse herself from Hubert’s company. In chapter ten, we get this pretty little bit of absurdity:
I brought the cordless phone upstairs with me and threw myself back onto the bed, the way I used to when I was a teenager. It was the closest thing to pole vaulting I’d ever done.
I just..I have no words. I’m intimately familiar with the over-dramatic antics of teenage girls, but the comparison to pole vaulting, especially from a now grown woman acting like a teenager, is just so absurd it’s almost surrealist. She’s calling Piper, and we’re treated to a few more paragraphs of her usual inane babbling courtesy of her strange dislike of Mike, who seems like generally a decent guy. A little overwhelmed with baby, perhaps, but madly in love with his wife and bearing a sunny, positive outlook on life that of course rubs Lola the wrong way.
Lola starts to inform Piper about the wedding plans, and that’s when the sobs start coming. Piper is helpfully sympathetic, and suggests that Lola try beating her at her own game — by announcing her own engagement at Piper’s wedding.
Is everyone in this book on drugs? She’s expecting Lola to produce a gorgeous hunk, a rock twice the size of Mindy’s, and announce an engagement in three weeks? Is this a plan that makes any kind of remote sense to anyone else? I just… I can’t picture real people doing this. It’s so… Hollywood. It’s like Weekend at Bernies or Harold and Kumar — so over the top it’d never fly in anything but a comedy.
Wait… is this book meant to be comedic?
As usual, talking to Piper was the right thing to do.
No, no no no. This is the wrong thing to do. The worst wrong thing to do. Oh Jesus, this is the plot, isn’t it?
By the time I hung up the phone, I felt so much better.
Well I feel lousy, so we must be doing the Tango Lola.
When Lola goes downstairs, Hubert is vaccumming.
I wonder if this isn’t meant to play with gender roles a little here? While Lola’s off being teenage Clarissa and explaining it all, Hubert’s playing June Cleaver and cleaning up after the girl’s houseguests cheerfully.
Lola is sure that Hubert doesn’t understand her sibling rivalry with Mindy because he’s an only child. I suspect it has more to do with his willful denial of reality; he draws a parallel between Mindy and Kelly that seems rather telling.
Though, I can’t really be too hard on him. He’s such a likeable character in a book full of unlikeable characters. He tries to cheer Lola up, insisting that she has many good qualities and that life isn’t a race to get married, but Lola, like many woman who have bought into the patriarchy whole-hog, defines her worth by her significant other or lack thereof, and rebuffs him cruelly. Hubert just smiles and deflects into an offer to pick up some food.
Kelly isn’t taking his calls, we discover, but her sister insists that the split is permenant and that it sucks that Kelly was so inconsiderate about how she did it. Lola, taking a page from his book, changes the subject to ask about his job, which it turns out (surprise surprise) he adores.
Lola apparently won an award for her writing! Hooray for Informed Attributes I guess. Then we’re awkwardly transitioned into one of the oldest cliches in the book: eerily accurate fortune cookies. Hubert’s reads “Out with the old, in with the new”, and Lola’s reads “You’ll find treasure where you least expect it.” I think it’s safe to say we’re setting up a Lola/Hubert boy-next-door romance, no? Hubert the Oblivious, though, suggests it means they should search through the house for treasures.
Now, I may be way off on this, but isn’t part of executing a will going through the posessions of the deceased and cataloguing them? Lola claims she was given the house in exactly the condition it was when the owner passed — including the teacups and sugar still resting on the coffee table, as she’d been having tea with Brother Jasper when she collapsed. But don’t you need to declare that sort of thing on your taxes? Wouldn’t you need to know at least the value of everything in it? And what if some of it was borrowed from other people, or stolen? Shouldn’t they have taken inventory?