Title: Bridget Jones's Diary.
Author: Helen Fielding.
Genre: Fiction, humour, romance, parody, epistolary fiction.
Publication Date: 1996.
Summary: Written in the form of a personal diary, the novel chronicles a year in the life of Bridget Jones, a thirty-something single working woman living in London. She writes about her career, self-image, over-indulgence in cigarettes, food, and alcohol, family, friends, and romantic relationships. A modern-day spin on Pride and Prejudice.
My rating: 7/10
♥ "...How is your love life, anyway?"
Oh God. Why can't married people understand that this is no longer a polite question to ask? We wouldn't rush up to them and roar, "How's your marriage going? Still having sex?" Everyone knows that dating in your thirties is not the happy-go-lucky free-for-all it was when you were twenty-two and that the honest answer is more likely to be, "Actually, last night my married lover appeared wearing suspenders and a darling little Angora crop-top, told me he was gay/a sex addict/a commitment phobic and beat me up with a dildo," than, "Super, thanks."
♥ Then next time, as if out of the blue, "Do you remember Mark Darcy, darling? Malcolm and Elaine's son? He's one of these super-dooper top-notch lawyers. Divorced. Elaine says he works all the time and he's terribly lonely. I think he might be coming to Una's New Year's Day Turkey Curry Buffet, actually."
I don't know why she didn't just come out with it and say, "Darling, do shag Mark Darcy over the turkey curry, won't you? He's very rich."
♥ It struck me as pretty ridiculous to be called Mr.Darcy and to stand on your own looking snooty at a party. It's like being called Heathcliff and insisting on spending the entire evening in the garden, shouting "Cathy" and banging your head against a tree.
♥ As my friend Tom often remarks, it's amazing how much time and money can be saved in the world of dating by close attention to detail. A while sock here, a pair of red braces there, a gray slip-on shoe, a swastika, are as often as not all one needs to tell you there's no point writing down phone numbers and forking out for expensive lunches because it's never going to be a runner.
♥ The trouble with working in publishing is that reading in your spare time is a bit like being a dustman and snuffling through the pig bin in the evening.
♥ One side of my hair was plastered to my head, the other sticking out in a series of peaks and horns. It is as if the hairs on my head have a life of their own, behaving perfectly sensibly all day, then waiting till I drop off to sleep and starting to run and jump about childishly, saying, "Now what shall we do?"
♥ I realize it has become too easy to find a diet to fit in with whatever you happen to feel like eating and that diets are not there to be picked and mixed bit picked and stuck to, which is exactly what I shall begin to do once I've eaten this chocolate croissant.
♥ Sharon maintains men - present company (i.e. Tom) excepted, obviously - are so catastrophically unevolved that soon they will just be kept by women as pets for sex, therefore presumably these will not count as shared households as the men will be kept outside in kennels.
♥ Oh God. What to do? Wish had not been born but immaculately burst into being in similar, though not identical, manner to Jesus, then would not have had to have birthday. Sympathise with Jesus in sense of embarrassment he must, and perhaps should, feel over two-millennia-old social imposition of own birthday on large areas of globe.
♥ I read in an article that Kathleen Tynan, late wife of the late Kenneth, had "inner poise" and, when writing, was to be found immaculately dressed, sitting at a small table in the center of the room sipping a glass of chilled white wine. Kathleen Tynan would not, when late with a press release for Perpetua, lie fully dressed and terrified under the duvet, chain-smoking, glugging cold sake out of beaker and putting on makeup as a hysterical displacement activity. Kathleen Tynan would not allow Daniel Cleaver to sleep with her whenever he felt like it but not be her boyfriend. Nor would she become insensible with drink and be sick. Wish to be like Kathleen Tynan (though not, obviously, dead).
♥ Oh God. As Tom never tires of telling me, in a sepulchral voice, laying his hand on my arm and staring into my eyes with an alarming look, "Only Women Bleed."
♥ A shady barbecue, perhaps? Serve your friends while you tamper with fire for hours then poison them with burnt yet still quivering slices of underdone suckling pig? Or organize picnics in the park and end up with all the women scraping squashed gobbets of mozzarella off tinfoil and yelling at children with ozone asthma attacks; while the men swig warm white wine in the fierce midday sun, staring at the nearby softball games with left-out shame.
♥ Ugh. Have just smoked entire packet of Silk Cuts as act of self-annihilating existential despair. Hope they both become obese and have to be lifted out of the window by crane.
♥ It's no good. When someone leaves you, apart from missing them, apart from the fact that the whole little world you've created together collapses, and that everything you see or do reminds you of them, the worst is the thought that they tried you out and, in the end, the whole sum of parts adds up to you got stamped REJECT by the one you love. How can you not be left with the personal confidence of a passed-over British Rail sandwich?
♥ Ugh. "Smoking Carriage" turned out to be Monstrous Pigsty where smokers were huddled, miserable and defiant. Realize it is no longer possible for smokers to live in dignity, instead being forced to sulk in the slimy underbelly of existence. Would not have been in least surprised if carriage had mysteriously been shunted off onto siding never to be seen again. Maybe privatized rail firms will start running Smoking Trains and villagers will shake their fists and throw stones at them as they pass, terrifying their children with tales of fire-breathing freaks within.
♥ Seem to remember from childhood am supposed to reply in same oblique style as if I am imaginary people employed by friends to issue invitations. What to put?
Bridget Jones regrets that she will be unable...
Miss Bridget Jones is distraught, that she will be unable...
Devastated does not do justice to the feelings of Miss Bridget Jones...
It is with great regret that we must announce that so great was Miss Bridget Jones's distress at not being able to accept the kind invitation of Mr. Mark Darcy that she has offed herself and will therefore, more certainly than ever, be unable to accept Mr. Mark Darcy's kind...
♥ "I know we're all psychotic, single and completely dysfunctional and it's all done over the phone," Tom slurred sentimentally, "but it's a bit like a family, isn't it?"
♥ That's it. It would be Bridget and Mark. Bridget and Mark Darcy. The Darcys. Not Mark and Bridget Darcy. Heaven forbid. All wrong. Then suddenly feel terrible for thinking about Mark Darcy in these terms, like Maria with Captain Von Trapp in The Sound of Music, and that I must run away and go to see Mother Superior, who will sing "Climb Ev'ry Mountain" to me.
♥ Emergency: Jude on phone in tears. Is coming round. Vile Richard has gone back to Vile Jilly. Jude blames gift. Thank God stayed home. Am clearly Emissary of Baby Jesus here to help those persecuted at Christmas by Herod-Wannabees, e.g. Vile Richard.