Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Tiny Beautiful Things: Letter #1


I still haven't quite figured out how I want to go about all of this.  I may have to test out a few different approaches until I find the appropriate one.  This time around, I'm going to start by paraphrasing the reader's question, follow with my own (admittedly) inept advice and then compare my advice with what Bad Cheryl had to say.  While paraphrasing is going to be super fun for me, I'm going to put actual quotes from the letters in bold type so you can see what kind of stupid bullshit I'm dealing with.  Please know that my paraphrasing-- while understandably snarky-- will be pretty accurate.

Let me know how this approach works.  I'll modify as necessary as time goes on.

Okay.  Let's get started.



Dear Sugar,

I was married for twenty years before my wife decided she wasn't willing to spend the rest of her life with a big fucktard like me.  I will take no responsibility for the divorce and say things like, "Whose fault?  Mine?  My wife's?  Society's?  I don't know." 

I've been in three relationships since the divorce.  The first one was just for my dick's entertainment.  The second was super cool, too, because I got laid all the time, but then she was all I-love-you and I was all I'm-fucking-out-of-here, but then I stuck around anyway because I like to stick my dick in things.  After an entire year of getting to stick my dick in her, I finally said "I love you" to this lady, and then I pretty much bailed because love is icky and makes me uncomfortable and stuff. 

Now I'm in another relationship and we've been boning for like four months now and even though she's in the middle of a divorce, we're totes serious and stuff.  Because I'm so awesome, she's totally falling in love with me, but she won't say "love" and that's perfect because I'm afraid of that word.

My question to you is, when is it right to take that big step and say I love you?  And what is this "love" thing all about?

Sincerely,
Giant Toolbag


Seriously?  People ask shit like this?  Okay, so, here's how I would respond:


Dear Giant Toolbag,

You sound like an asshole.  I'm glad we're not dating.

Love is pretty much the greatest thing ever.  What's it about?  It's when you're lucky enough to find someone who gives you hope and laughter and joy and you find yourself smiling despite whatever else is going on in your life because you're grateful for the existence of another person.  It's super fucking easy to love someone, and it's also super easy to say "I love you."  Say it as soon as you realize it's true, because you never know when you or that person may unexpectedly die.  Say it because it's beautiful.  I can't even tell you how many people I love.  In fact, I'm *in love* with a whole mess of people; they're *my friends*.  They all know that I love them because I've told them so.  Why are you making such a big fucking deal about it?

Grow up.

Hugs and kisses,
Cali
This is why I don't write an advice column.



Now, let's get to what Cheryl had to say about all of this.

HOLY SHIT, YOU'RE NOT EVEN GOING TO BELIEVE IT-- the first thing she wrote was,

"The last word my mother ever said to me was 'love.'"

I know.  I was shocked, too.  Did you even know that her mom had died???!?  She then spends the next FIVE GODDAMNED PARAGRAPHS ignoring the question and talking about herself and her dead mom because the whole point of her "advice column" was to talk about herself.  In the sixth paragraph, she tries to justify all of her self-centeredness by saying,

"I suppose you think this has nothing to do with your question, Johnny, but it has everything to do with my answer.  It has everything to do with every answer I have ever given to anyone.  It's Sugar's genesis story."
Fine.  So his name was Johnny.  Not Giant Toolbag.  You got me.


I wish I knew how to spell out the sounds I'm making.  It's something like, "Kkkkk, kkkkaaahhh, kkkkkkitch," and then the sound of vomiting.
Cheryl then spends an entire paragraph saying stuff that makes me want to destroy things, like, "The best thing you can possibly do with your life is to tackle the motherfucking shit out of love."
Goddamnit.  Obviously, I have no problem with profanity.  I fucking love the shit out of it (see, Johnny?  I *love it*).  But you do not "tackle the motherfucking shit out of love."  YOU'RE SO HARDCORE, CHERYL.
Then these two sentences happen:
"I love the way you wrote to me with your searching, sacred, knuckleheaded, nonchalant, withholding dudelio heart on full display.  I love that you compelled me to write 'dudelio,' even though-- on top of the fact that 'dudelio' isn't a word-- I am morally opposed to the entire dude and dude-related lexicon."

What the goddamn-- you know what, I'm just gonna let you guys destroy this one because you're fucking hysterical and I love you.  AGAIN, SEE HOW EASY THAT WAS TO SAY?

Then Cheryl dazzles us with one of her signature punctuation-be-damned run-on sentences, and this one really wins the prize for what-the-fuckery.  This is all one sentence:

"I love that one recent evening when I was lying in bed with Mr. Sugar and he was reading The New Yorker and I was reading Brain, Child, I had to stop and put my magazine on my chest because I was thinking about you and what you asked me and so then Mr. Sugar put his magazine on his chest and asked what I was thinking about and I told him and we had a conversation about your troubles and then we turned off the lights and he fell asleep and I lay there wide awake with my eyes closed writing my answer to you in my head for so long that I realized I wasn't going to fall asleep, so I got up and walked through the house and got a glass of water and sat at the kitchen table in the dark and looked out the window at the wet street and my cat came and jumped up on the table and sat there beside me and after a while I turned to her and said, 'What will I tell Johnny?' and she purred."

I can't even tell you how many times I broke down laughing while transcribing that "sentence."  I genuinely mean it.  I had to stop three times because I was laughing too hard.  WHAT THE FUCK WAS THAT?  Did she even *have* an editor for this book?

So this morning I got up and took a shower and got dressed and drove to work and gave direction to my employees and then I read my email and checked for corporate directives, and then I got a soda from the vending machine and I drank it and then I starting doing stuff, after which I did more stuff and then I kept doing more stuff and then I made a few phone calls and I did some more stuff after that, and then I took a short break and then I did more things and some shit happened and I dealt with it because that's my job and then I worked on some other stuff and then I made a few more phone calls and I--

I would fucking punch myself in the face if I actually wrote like this.

Anyway.  Let's get on with the rest of Cheryl's response, even though it's TWO AND A HALF PAGES OF BULLSHIT.  You know, my advice wasn't really all that bad, now that I'm reading it, and I neatly summed it up in one paragraph.  Cheryl can't control her word-vomit.  It keeps spewing out like the aftermath of a tequila blackout.

"You aren't afraid of love.  You're afraid of all the junk you've yoked to love."

And this is when I just sit here, shake my head repeatedly and wish for a handgun.

I HATE YOU.
Goddamnit.

I just-- I can't.

Cheryl then goes Full Cheryl by making it all about herself again, except, wait, I'm so confused--

"There's a saying about drug addicts that they stop maturing emotionally at the age they started using, and I've known enough addicts to believe this to be true enough."

WHAT THE FUCKITY FUCK WAS THAT ABOUT.  From what we've been led to believe from her totally true memoir, "Wild," she was totes a hardcore heroin addict and she was super proud of this "fact."  What's all this nonsense?  Shouldn't she know *firsthand* about drug abuse?   I'M SO CONFUSED AND PROFOUNDLY SHATTERED BY THE NOTION THAT SHE MAY HAVE BEEN LYING TO US.

Motherfucker. 

I'm tired.  I really am.  I had a long day.  But as much as I genuinely want to just sum up the rest of her dumb fucking response with, "blah blah blah, stupid bullshit, the end," and go to bed, I can't.  I can't because--

"'I love you' can mean I think you're groovy and beautiful and I'm going to do everything in my power to be your partner for life.  It can mean I think you're groovy and beautiful but I'm in transition right now, so let's go easy on the promises and take it as it comes.  It can mean I think you're groovy and beautiful but I'm not that interested with you, now or probably ever, no matter how groovy or beautiful you continue to be."

WHY DO YOU KEEP SAYING THE WORD "GROOVY" LIKE IT'S STILL A THING?  Also, "I think you're groovy and beautiful but I'm not that interested with you, now or probably ever, no matter how groovy or beautiful you continue to be," IN NO WAY TRANSLATES INTO "I LOVE YOU." 

CAN YOU SERIOUSLY NOT RECALL THE BEGINNING OF THE PARAGRAPH, YOU STUPID TWAT.

*face palm*

I'm not qualified to give advice, and I openly, happily own this fact.  But I can tell you now that Cheryl's version of "I love you" is total crap.  I am convinced that Cheryl has no fucking idea what love really is.

Because I'm just very tired, I will skip a couple paragraphs of bullshit so I can go to bed and say that she ends the whole disaster with, "We're all going to die, Johnny.  Hit the iron bell like it's dinnertime."

I hate her so much. 

It's your turn now.  Go.




Sunday, March 29, 2015

Tiny Beautiful Things: The Accolades, the Table of Contents and the Steve Almond Introduction



I realized almost immediately upon taking notes that I was going to get very tired of typing out "Tiny Beautiful Things" during this review.  I tried to abbreviate it to TBT, but apparently "Throwback Thursday" is a thing-- thus ruining my plans with the prospect of possible confusion-- and so, in the spirit of Cheryl Strayed's seemingly pathological habit of abusing a thesaurus, I have decided to rename this book "Small Tantalizing Doohickies" or, from now on, "STD" for short.

It seemed apt.

Let's start in on STD's accolades.


Somebody at Salon says some stuff that I can't even deal with.

Somebody at The New Yorker pretty much goes down on Cheryl's pudendum.

Somebody who wrote a book with a really dumb title tries to convince us that we all need to carry this book around with us 24/7, like it's a Siri for our souls, and goddamnit, now I need to go get a rag to clean the vomit off of my laptop.

Somebody else says something that, depending on how you interpret it, could be taken positively or negatively and we're just suppose to assume GOOD.

Someone who apparently works in the CIA Torture and Propaganda Department says,

"Sugar's columns are easily the most beautiful thing I've read all year.  They should be taught in schools and put on little slips of paper and dropped from airplanes, for all to read."
I'm sorry for you already, North Korea.
 

Some desperate idiot who apparently just escaped from a cult says,

"Dear Sugar will save your soul.  I belong to the Church of Sugar."

And finally, someone with no people-reading abilities whatsoever says,

"...Sugar shines out amid the sea of fakeness." 

Oh, fuck me.  WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE.


Son of a bitch.  Let's get on with it.


The Table on Contents is broken down into five parts that are in no way titled in such a manner that would cause me to contemplate drilling a hole into my skull, except the opposite of that.

Part I: IT WAS ALWAYS ONLY US
Part II: WHATEVER MYSTERIOUS STARLIGHT THAT GUIDED YOU THIS FAR
Part III: CARRY THE WATER YOURSELF
Part IV: YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE BROKEN FOR ME
Part V: PUT IT IN A BOX AND WAIT

I'm not having a caps attack; I'm just writing it the way it's printed.

There are-- OH MY FUCKING GOD, THERE ARE FIFTY-SIX FUCKING LETTERS IN THIS BOOK AND YES, THIS IS NOW A CAPS ATTACK.

I am genuinely whimpering right now.  56.  What have I done.


While I endure the 10-day waiting period for a firearm purchase in order to compassionately kill myself, I guess I should just keep writing because, meh, still alive.  Let's see how far I can get in ten days.

Let's explore Steve Almond's introduction and then call it quits for today, shall we?

Almond tells us a lovely tale about a man named Stephen Elliott who came up with an idea for a website "to build an online community around literature," and Almond says that it sounded "pretty awful."  GOOD START.  Stephen called upon all of his impoverished writer buddies to write for the website for free and BLAM, behold the creation of "The Rumpus."

Almond decided to contribute to the website by authoring an advice column which he had originally suggested be called "Dear Sugar Butt," due to "the endearment Stephan and I had taken to using in our email correspondence," and then he admits that this was totes gay and not a good idea.  Thus, the advice column's name was shortened to "Dear Sugar." 

He writes,

"Handing yourself a job as an advice columnist is a pretty arrogant thing to do, which is par for my particular course."

Why do I suddenly hate everyone in the writing community?

Anyway, Almond tells us that in order to write this advice column, he created a persona named Sugar, whom he describes as, "a woman with a troubled past and a slightly reckless tongue," and already I am disgusted by the whole thing.  I have a distaste for dishonesty and manipulation, so the fact that a man who wanted to go by the name of "Sugar Butt" created an advice column under the guise of being a troubled woman... just, fuck everyone.  How did this become a thing.

Anyway, Almond wrote his bullshit advice column for a short while--

"...more often I faked it, making do with wit where my heart failed me.  After a year of dashing off columns, I quit."

--and that should have been the end of that bullshit, but NO.  Almond decided to ask Cheryl Fucking Strayed to take over as Dear Sugar because--

"Cheryl had written the one and only fan letter I'd received as Sugar."

WELL, FUCK ME RIGHT IN THE FACE, LET'S PASS THE NARCISSISTIC BATON FROM ONE ASSHOLE TO ANOTHER. 

Motherfucker.  I'm so disgusted.  I'm actually proud to say that I'm not a writer at this moment just because I will be able to distance myself from these assholes.

Okay, it only gets worse.  Brace yourselves.

Someone-- "a presumably young man"-- wrote, "WTF, WTF, WTF?  I'm asking this question as it applies to everything every day."

First of all, why should we assume that this was a young man?  That was the entirety of the question.  It didn't end with, "...because my penis doesn't work."  I'm already irritated.  And Cheryl's response makes me wish that California didn't have a 10-day waiting period for firearm purchases.  Get ready for what I tried to warn you about.  Please go back and read the reader's question again, and then get a fucking load of Cheryl's response:

"Dear WTF,
My father's father made me jack him off when I was three or four or five.  I wasn't any good at it.  My hands were too small and I couldn't get the rhythm right and I didn't understand what I was doing..."

WHAT THE FUCKING HELL KIND OF RESPONSE WAS THAT TO--

I'm so angry right now.  YOU DO NOT--

I can't even.  NOBODY ASKED, NOBODY WANTS TO KNOW-- BOUNDARIES, Cheryl.  IT'S A THING.  You save that shit for people you trust.  You save that for people who love you.  You save that shit, at the very least, for the therapist.  You don't just word-vomit that kind of information for no particular reason whatsoever, unprompted, like you're proud of it.  For so many reasons, I hate you so fucking much right now, and for those same reasons, I don't believe one fucking word coming out of your dumb fucking mouth.

Fuck this woman right in the face.  No one says that.  No one who has experienced sexual trauma volunteers that information.  NO ONE.  FUCKING LIAR.

Almond doesn't know any better, though, so he falls to his knees and worships Cheryl for her awesomeness and concludes by saying,

"She was a real human being laying herself bare, fearlessly, that we might come to understand the nature of our own predicaments."

I can't even finish the introduction.  It's a bunch of ass-kissing bullshit that makes me want to destroy things, and not in the playful "I want to slam my face into a doorknob" kind of way.  This pisses me off.  Just know that Almond goes Full Cheryl in explaining how amazing Bad Cheryl is and ends the whole mess with,

"Run toward the darkness, sweet peas, and shine."

I suddenly wish I lived in Alaska.  They don't require permits to purchase firearms.  I guess this is good news for all of you.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Tiny Beautiful Things: The Introduction

I am laughing so hard right now.

It's not a pretty laugh, or even a joyful laugh; it's the kind of laughter you'd hear coming from someone who is about to jump off the top of a building. 

It's fucking crazy time. 


I still can't believe I'm doing this.  God help me, let's get started.


Years ago, it came to pass that our dear Cheryl decided that she was in some way qualified to write an advice column.  This makes sense because everyone knows that narcissistic, lying shitbags are the best people to turn to when you're having a crisis; they always have such insightful things to say.  About themselves.  And not you.  Or your problems. 

So, really, she's pretty much the last person you should turn to for advice if you have a functional brain, however emotionally damaged your brain may temporarily be.

Anyway, Cheryl landed herself an advice column called "Dear Sugar" because she is an ingenious sociopath, and all these years later, she decided to use her newfound fame from the inexplicable success of "Wild" to force her publisher to release a book chock-full of all of her amazing advice.  Lucky everybody. 

This is going to be a shitstorm.




The cover:

Oh, for fuck's sake.
 
 
If you enlarge the photo (go ahead, click on the photo, nothing bad will happen) and direct your attention to the right side of the cover, you will find the quote, " Let yourself be gutted.  Let it open you.  Start here." 
 
Since 1) I decided to post the cover in the teaser and 2) you guys are pretty much the best people on earth, let me share some feedback from a couple delightful readers:
 
Horace said,
"Uhm... WTF is with the inner cover flap?
'Let yourself be gutted. Let it open you. Start here...'
That's not how books work, Cheryl. That is, unless you are advocating the use of successive paper cuts to help put someone out of their misery. :-(
I thought this was a self help book? Since when is gutting one's self considered helpful?
'Let yourself be gutted.'  Good lord - could we be a bit more melodramatic?"
 
Alison joined in:
"Gutted: adj. disappointed and upset. Yes, Bad Cheryl. I do believe I will have no choice but to allow myself to be gutted by your book."
 
 
Well played, you two.  I just may be able to retire and let you write this for me.  Since, however, I doubt you have the death wish with which I'm cursed, I will keep going.  For now.
 
 
 
Now, let me open the book ever so slightly:
 
Wait, what?
 
 
Holy fuck, would you look at that.
 
The actual cover was cut a couple centimeters short of the rest of the book in order for CHERYL STRAYED TO QUOTE HERSELF IN FULL VIEW. 
 
 



 
It only gets worse when you open it all the way:
 
I SAY THE MOST PROFOUND THINGS.

 
 
WHO DOES THIS. 
 
After contemplating this horseshit for a moment or two, I went to my bookcase, closed my eyes and retrieved three books at random.  I then opened each book to discover what lay just beyond the cover.
 
Hey, look at that.
 
 
No way.
 
 
Fucking Steinbeck.  What a diva.
 
 
So, yeah.  Real writers (T.S Elliot, Erich Fromm and John Steinbeck, from the examples) have no desire to go Full Asshole.  Not our Cheryl.  She's so amazing that she needs to slather her own brilliance right on the inside cover so we won't miss a word.
 
 
And so ends the introduction.
 
I would like to take a moment for full disclosure:
 
I spent countless months dissecting "Wild" before I decided to write about it.  I *just* bought "Tiny Beautiful Things" and I need some time to read through it all, take notes, destroy the margins of the book with my outrage and then share my incredulousness with all of you.  Please allow me at least a few days to read and research this book accordingly (though, admittedly a few days won't be enough time, but I shall do my best).  If you've been with me from the start, you know that I am very thorough, honest and accurate.  While I hate making you wait for the next installment, I want to give you the best that I can give.  I need a little time to review this correctly.
 
 
Hugs and kisses,
Cali

 



Sunday, March 22, 2015

Tiny Beautiful Things: The Teaser

There it is.  Right there in my lap.


Shit just got real.
 
 
 
That's right.  I went out and bought it.  I'm already going to hell for so many reasons; let's just pile this on top of everything else.  GOOD LUCK SORTING IT ALL OUT, JESUS.  HAVE FUN WITH THAT.
 
I was dreading the thought of having to purchase this book.  I had even considered buying it online in order to to save myself the embarrassment of having to go to a bookstore, but I was thinking of all of you: I didn't want you to have to wait longer than necessary.  You're welcome.
 
I hardly slept the night before I bought it.  This is likely because I was incredibly sick, but I enjoy believing it was because my brain was trying to revolt.
 
"If I don't let you sleep, tomorrow will never come."
 
 
Fuck you, brain!  That's not how tomorrow works!
 
The morning still came and as I was waiting for the local Barnes and Noble to open, I checked their website to make sure they had this piece of shit in stock.  They did.  While I took a shower, I repeatedly practiced shouting "THIS ISN'T FOR ME" in case someone confronted me in the store (this is a perfect example of the sort of irrational fuckery that goes on inside my head pretty much on a daily basis).  I tried to convince myself that this loud proclamation wouldn't be a lie.  This book *wasn't* for me.  It was a gift for all of you.
 
Before I even left my apartment, I was already mentally playing out the ghastly, imaginary scenario in which the B&N cashier would notice that I was purchasing a Cheryl Strayed book and, incorrectly assuming that I was a fan, would try to start an enthusiastic conversation with me about the super-awesomeness of "Wild."
 
'OMG, WILD WAS SO AMAZING, IT WAS SO INSPIRATIONAL, I <3 IT SO MUCH!"
 
Filled with an unspeakable dread at the thought of this exchange, I realized that I needed a defense against such an attack.  That's when I came up with the idea for this business card:
 
(Image courtesy of Vistaprint)
 
 
(500 of these are on their way to me as I write this.  Future unsuspecting Cheryl fans: BEWARE.)
 
At the time, though, I had no defense.  Still, I decided that no matter what might possibly go down, I was still going to buy this fucking book.  I took a deep breath, figuratively adjusted my lady-balls and drove to B&N.
 
The minute I walked into the store, a new nightmare presented itself: where the fuck was I going to find this book.  What possible category could this book fall under.  Tiny Beautiful Things?  What the fuck.
 
On instinct, I immediately headed toward the Fiction section and laughed audibly at my clever self on the stroll over. 
 
"Hahahaha, *fiction*!!!  You're so funny!  I love you, me!"

 
And yet, when I searched for it... nothing.  I checked three more times because there was no fucking way any Cheryl Strayed book could be considered anything but fiction, but still, nothing.  It wasn't there.
 
I spent a good ten minutes walking around the store and amusing myself with other (im)possible locations for this heap of crap.  Bible Study?  African American history?  WWII?
 
My amusement eventually turned into a mild panic when I genuinely couldn't find the goddamned thing anywhere.  I walked up and down every single aisle in the store and it was nowhere to be found.  This is when I wished I had just ordered it online.  It struck me: I was going to have to ask someone for help
 
I stood there, horrified, motionless, weighing out my options.  Was I really capable of approaching another living being and saying the words, "Can you tell me where I can find 'Tiny Beautiful Things?'" 
 
I could leave.  I could just order it online.  No one had a gun to my head.
 
I hesitantly approached the reference desk... and then walked away.  I did another loop of the store, but this time, it wasn't a funny playtime loop.  It was a brutally determined I-will-find-the-Lindbergh-baby-kidnapper loop.  I looked in every likely (and unlikely) section and still couldn't find it.  I approached the reference desk again, hesitated... and walked away for a second time.
 
I wish I had the security video of me in the store.  I wish I could post it on here so you could witness my inner battle being played out in a Barnes and Noble.
 
On my third approach to the reference desk-- defeated--I cleared my throat, faced the giant bear of a man who stood behind it and said, "Excuse me, could you tell me wh--" and that's when some old lady walked up next to me and was all I'm-old-so-fuck-you-and-your-question-I'm-just-going-to-loudly-shout-out-my-own-question-over-yours-and-you-can-just-fucking-deal-with-it, and I had to stand there with my embarrassing, partially asked question hanging in midair while Rude Old Lady was given step-by-step treasure map directions to the Cat Calendars, during which time I almost ran away, thinking that this was a sure sign from the universe that if I didn't leave right then and there, I would single handedly cause the apocalypse.
 
Since I was too horrified with myself to manage doing anything at this point, I found myself still standing in front of The Bear after Rude Old Lady creaked away and was forced to finish asking my question. 
 
Much like the book "Wild" and the movie "Wild," this story ends very anticlimactically.  The Bear walked me over to the Relationship section (where, I swear, I had looked at least four times) and effortlessly picked Strayed's piece of shit off the shelf.  He was too busy mumbling things about Science Fiction to care about my particular book choice and seemed completely nonjudgmental about the whole ordeal.  I thanked him and quickly walked away.
 
The cashier, too, gave exactly zero fucks about my book selection (though I did, admittedly, put it on the counter facedown).  Upon receiving my receipt, I took the book, sans bag, and somehow refrained from sprinting out of the store.
 
And that's that.  I bought the goddamned thing.
 
I did this for all of you.
 
You're welcome. 
 
 
 



Thursday, March 19, 2015

FUCK YEAH, BITCHES! LAST FUCKING REVIEW OF WILD!

I just watched "Wild" for the last time and I'm so excited about the fact that I will never have to watch this movie again that I'm genuinely tempted to post this whole fucking review in caps.

I will control myself.

For now.

Okay.  Let's do this shit.


We left off with the TYB worshipping Cheese and giving her the trail name she always wanted and blargh, fuck that noise.

In my original notes-- when I had actually watched this piece of shit all the way through-- my writing was nearly illegible even to me because I'd been writing so fast and I ultimately had to go back and take more notes with every viewing, partially because my original notes made little sense to me.  Today, before I started the last segment of the movie, I looked at my original notes and laughed aloud when I saw,

"Day 80.  OMG, THE LLAMA."

I had forgotten what a treat I was in for.

Holy fuck.  Here we go.

So, Cheese is walking through the wilderness when BLAM, llama.  What.  The fuck.  Nope.

Anyway, because sure, pffffft, whatever, yeah!  Llama!  Happens all the time!  Ask any hiker!

As Cheese is making friends with the random llama, an old lady and a little boy show up out of nowhere and the old lady is all, "You got him, thanks," and I gotta admit, I was Full WTF even though I knew this was coming.  This whole scene is just so random and crazy and weird and there's no chance in hell it ever really happened.

Old Lady and Little Boy introduce themselves as Vera and Kyle, respectively, and the llama's name is Shooting Star because that's totally what I would name a llama.  Anyway, get ready for the creepiest fucking movie scene that isn't in a horror movie.

It's drizzling and miserable and Cheese asks Kyle, "Are you enjoying your hike today?"  Creepiest fucking response ever, Kyle is all, yes I'm loving it what does your soul taste like "I'm having a wonderful time, thank you so much for asking," and I shift uncomfortably in my seat while wondering who the fuck was responsible for the casting in this movie (WAY TO FUCKING GO, DAVID RUBIN, THIS ISN'T FUCKING "CHILDREN OF THE CORN").  Little Damien says, "(mumble, gurgle) my grandmother is looking after me because I have some problems I'm not supposed to talk about with strangers," and holy fuck, how many dead bodies has this kid left in his wake.

Vera and Cheese share a meaningful look after Kyle says this because it's creepy as fucking hell apparently Kyle has experienced some sort of traumatic experience when he murdered his family with his mind and Cheese tries to make everything better by saying, "Everybody has problems."  The conversation goes downhill from there until the demon child offers to sing Cheese a song and this is what was happening on my end while this shit was going down:

Nothing about this is okay.
 
 
So, yeah, Kyle sings "Red River Valley" for Cheese and none of this is okay with me because I'm pretty sure that kid is the devil.  Cheese finally walks away, only to fall to her knees and cry for no apparent reason.  She looks up at the trees and says, "I miss you.  God, I miss you," and I can't even.  Not after what just went down.  Satan?  Do you miss Satan?  I'm not touching this.
 
Suddenly, nighttime.  Burning book pages.
 
HOLY SHIT, THIS IS IT, the big climax of the movie.  I will warn you now: it's one of those climaxes that you either fake or force when you're with someone with whom you're really not that into and the climax ends up being even more disappointing than if you had opted to spend your evening alone at home watching cat videos on Youtube.
 
Get ready.
 
And let me tell you now that I had to watch this last scene MULTIPLE TIMES in order to ensure I could quote it correctly, so, you know, recognize, bitches.
 
Cheese reaches the Bridge of the Gods and cue voiceover:
 
"It took me years to be the woman my mother raised.  It took me four years, seven months and three days to do it.   *Without her.*  After I lost myself in the wilderness and my grief, I found my own way out of the wilderness.  And I didn't even know where I was going until I got there on the last day of my hike.  'Thank you,' I thought, over and over again, for everything the trail had taught me, and everything I couldn't yet know."
 
Notes: "OMFG KILL ME, OH GOD, BLARGH"

She says some crap about how she would eventually meet her husband and have two kids and I seriously can't even begin to pretend to care anymore--
 
Notes: "TOO MUCH OVERWROUGHT BULLSHIT, CAN'T TAKE IT, BRAIN SHUTTING DOWN"
 
--and then the voiceover continues.
 
"I knew only that I didn't need to reach with my hands anymore, that seeing the fish beneath the surface of the water was enough--" (notes read: she is looking at the sky at this point)-- "that it was everything."  CGI FOX ON BRIDGE.  "My life, like all lives, mysterious, irrevocable and sacred, so very close, so very present, so very belonging to me.  How wild it was... to let it be."
 
SIMON AND GARFUNKEL, THE END.
 
 
FUCK THIS MOVIE RIGHT IN THE FACE.
 
 
Holy shit.  It's over.

 



Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Important News

Beloved readers,

If you've been following this blog from the start, you know that I only have one review left to write on the dumb fucking movie and then that will be the end of all my snark.  This knowledge makes you sad.  In fact, for some of you, this is downright devastating.  I realized today that this makes me sad, too.

After much thought, I've made what will probably end up being a very stupid decision.


I'm going to read and review "Tiny Beautiful Things," also by Cheryl Strayed.


Before I tell you what that big bag of bullshit is about, I will allow all of you a long moment to squeal with delight, fist-pump, dance around the room, throw some confetti and high-five the nearest person.

Go ahead.  I know you're doing it.  I'll wait.

 
 
 
 
 
God, it's like I have a death wish.
 
Cheryl Strayed had been *an advice columnist* for years before she... that's all I really need to say, isn't it.  This stupid book is a collection of all the advice she's given over the years and it's just as horrifically terrible as you imagine.  No matter what question the "reader" is asking (and I put "reader" in quotes because it has been widely speculated that Cheryl made up the questions herself), Cheryl responds by oversharing and making the whole thing about herself.  It's awful.  A reader could write in and ask, "My favorite ice-cream is chocolate!  What's yours?"  And Cheryl would respond with something like, "I WAS GANG-RAPED BY THREE DOZEN PANDAS WHEN I WAS 4 YEARS OLD..."  and then maybe, several agonizing pages later, she might conclude with, "...and that's why I like strawberry."
 
It's going to be awesome.  For you.
 
I might eventually commit suicide.
 
 
In conclusion, you may now look forward to something.  The fun isn't ending.  We're gonna keep this alive.
 
 
Hugs and kisses (and fuck Cheryl Strayed),
Califohioan
 
 


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

The Dumb Fucking Movie Reveiw, Part Six

Ugh. 

I've been sick for the past four days and reviewing this stupid fucking movie is pretty much the last thing I feel like doing, but I'm going stir crazy and I need something to take my mind off of how shitty I feel.  Be advised, I've been living off of nothing but tea, juice, Nyquil and popsicles for the past few days and I think my brain is starting to shut down.  Watching this movie for the 87th time might just finish the job. 

This might kill me.  Hope you're all enjoying yourselves.

Okay.  I'm gonna go watch this piece of shit YET AGAIN.  If I survive, you'll have Part Six to enjoy.


********************************
 
 
WELL, AREN'T YOU ALL JUST THE LUCKIEST, LOOK WHO'S STILL ALIVE.  I'm starting to suspect that I might be invincible (and yet, oddly, still susceptible to colds) because a mere mortal would have died a thousand deaths by now from attempting this.  I AM YOUR GOD NOW.
 
I really shouldn't be trying to do this in my current state.
 
Let's get started.
 
Where were we.  Ah, yes, Cheese was running away from the rapey hunters, and upon watching the tail end of that scene again, I notice there's a goddamned bear in the background as she's running away because why not.  Fine.  Whatever.  Suddenly it's morning time...?  Was she running all night?  I don't care.  It's early morning and it's super foggy and it's now Day 62 of Cheese's hike.  Cheese reaches the Oregon border, attributes a Robert Frost quote to herself-- "But I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep" (dated August 8, 1995)-- and encounters a field of grazing cattle.  She walks through the field, approaches a cow and says in a sing-song voice, "Hello, Oregon cow!" and I fight the urge to throw my laptop out the window. 
 
She's suddenly walking down the middle of a road-- and when I say "down the middle," I mean right smack down the goddamned middle of a road, like, directly on the double yellow lines-- and this had prompted me to scrawl, "THAT'S NOT HOW ROADS WORK," in my notes.  She's in Ashland now and Jerry Garcia is dead.  I have a couple problems with this.  First of all, Jerry Garcia died on August NINTH, 1995, not the eighth, and let's give everyone the benefit of the doubt here what the fuck, IS IT REALLY SO FUCKING HARD TO DO A LITTLE FACT CHECKING?  GOOGLE.  IT'S A THING.  This was either a lack of fact checking or a matter of terrible editing.  Did they skip a scene or something?  Either way, this movie blows.  Anyway, it's whatever fucking day it is on her fake hike and Jerry Garcia is dead.  Even if they just messed up on the date, I should point out that Jerry Garcia died at 4:23am on August 9th, and yet somehow every dirty, stinking hippie within 3,000 miles has managed to converge on Ashland by like 9am to have a bunch of love-ins on the street and pfffffffffft, I'm pretty sure in reality, not one of these yahoos would have even crawled out of bed that early even for some wake-and-bake, but okay, whatever.  We all know what early-risers Deadheads are.
 
Cheese walks through town, stops at a produce stand, smells some fruit and manages not to steal anything.  Then she goes into a store called "Moon Rising Gifts and Cosmetics" to abuse their make-up sample selection and even I'm confused because really, Cheese?  The make-up saleslady comes over just as Cheese is smearing some lipstick on herself and says, "That shade looks nice on you!"  Then she vomits in her mouth a little, steps back and says, "The nicest lipstick in the world can't help a girl if she doesn't take care of her personal hygiene," and Cheese is all Imma-get-right-on-that, and saleslady says, "I think it really needs to be a priority, sweetie."  Oh, bullshit.  Your job is to sell lipstick, asshole, not tell your customers that they stink.  I don't believe this scene for a minute.
 
Cheese leaves the store with a Snapple and I wonder what kind of make-up store sells Snapple.  She stands on the sidewalk drinking her stupid lemonade and a dude handing out fliers sees her.  He's handing out fliers for a Jerry Garcia tribute concert and I once again marvel at the fact that Jerry Garcia has only been dead for like five hours at this point, yet BLAM.  Fliers.  Whatever.  Don't care.  Flier Guy comes over and we're given the cinematic gift of some classic, timeless dialogue:
 
Flier Guy:  "Hey."
Cheese:  "Hey."

Flier Guy gives Cheese a flier for the concert, and even though he's been randomly handing these out to goddamned everyone, he asks for Cheese's name so he can "put her on the list," and eat a bag of dicks.  This is so stupid.  Cheese is all shy, and here comes some more of that beautiful dialogue:

Flier Guy:  "I don't bite."
Cheese:  "I don't mind biting."

I'm just confused because Flier Guy isn't wearing a Wilco t-shirt.  How are we supposed to know why Cheese likes him?

Suddenly Cheese is standing in front of a mirror in a hotel in Ashland.  She's wearing only a black bra and panties and she's shaving her legs... in the sink?  What the fuck, seriously.  This is like how she washed her hair in the bathtub back in the motel in Mojave without, you know, getting into the shower.  DO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND HOW SHOWERS WORK?  DO YOU NOT REALIZE THAT YOU CAN DO ALL SORTS OF THINGS *WHILE* YOU'RE IN THE SHOWER?  LIKE WASH YOUR HAIR AND SHAVE YOUR LEGS?  I write in my notes, "Does she understand how a toilet works?  Does she take a crap next to the toilet and then cover it with a towel?"

Oh, christ.  Anyway.  She goes back to the makeup shop to put on more lipstick (my notes read, "Straight off the sample tube.  Hello, herpes") and then there's a shot of her unhinging her jaw to stuff a giant hamburger into her mouth (notes: "glad you put that lipstick on").  She heads over to the club and it's totes awesome and stuff.  Flier Guy shows up in the crowd out of nowhere (still not wearing a Wilco t-shirt) with a glass of wine and Cheese gets all swoony over him because of course she does.

Without warning, they're driving in Flier Guy's car and they're both laughing and oh my, how wonderful.  They show up at his... tent... and then it's time to get undressed.  Cheese is all covered in bruises and Flier Guy goes Full Lancelot and starts kissing her bruises and then SEXY TIME.

Paul flashback, and then Cheese is writing Paul's name in the sand outside of Flier Guy's tent, then she's wiping it away and we have to suffer through a voiceover of the letter Cheese has written to Paul.

"I woke up this morning and wrote your name in the sand.  I've done that on every beach I've been on ever since I met you, but I'm not gonna do it again."

Who gives a shit.

Then there's a shot of her setting the letter to Paul on fire and I wonder how painful it would be if I set myself on fire.

Back on the trail!  RAIN!  Oh my goodness, so much of it!  It's like that driving, drizzling rain she talked about it the book!  She reaches a Ranger Station and the Ranger is locking up and getting into his truck.  Cheese is all, boo-hoo, look at poor little ol' me, wontcha please open back up so I can get my package, and Ranger Creepy says, "Okay, if you'll have a drink with me later," and I'm pretty sure that's not how Rangers work.

Upon entering the station, Ranger Creepy gets her package and says, "Here you go, good-lookin'," because of course he does.  Then he attempts to sweep her off her feet by explaining his mixology expertise and this explanation includes the words "punch" and "bucket" so, whoa, watch out, Tom Cruise, looks like someone else is gonna take your role in the sequel to "Cocktail."  Just as this is happening, THE THREE YOUNG BUCKS SHOW UP, OMG, and if you hadn't read the book, none of this would make any sense! 

They stumble into the station from the driving, drizzling rain and immediately start worshipping Cheese--

"You're our hero!"

-- and this is when I write "FUCK OFF" about ten times all over my notes.  The TYB have packages, too, and Ranger Creepy throws a little tantrum about how the station is closed and NO, I'M NOT GONNA GET YOUR PACKAGES, so Cheese is all, awww-c'mon-wontcha?  So they get their packages and walk outside and there's a random horse standing in the middle of the rain and fuck this movie.

Cheese and the TYB all camp together for the night and two bottles of Jack Daniels appear.  I suppress some vomit just at the thought and then they all start drinking the hell out of it.  There's a super dumb conversation and I'm not gonna waste my time recounting it.  Luckily, it starts raining again that that puts a stop to the conversation.  And now it's time for another episode of "Let's See How Many Epileptics We Can Fuck With," brought to you by the producers of this piece of shit movie.

Brace yourselves for a crap-ton of flashbacks.

Cheese is in her tent.

Horse noises!

Reading poetry in the tent.

Mom!  Mom's Horse!

Tent!

Horse!

Tent!

Mom in the hospital!

Horse!

Mom!

Leif pointing a gun at Mom's horse!

Blood dripping on the roof of the tent!

Gunshot!

Cheese barfs outside the tent!

Horse!

Barf!


WHAT THE HELL WAS ALL OF THAT.

Uuuuuuuggggggggggghhhhhhh, it's the next morning and Cheese calls Leif and pffffft, no she doesn't, but okay.  She goes back to the campsite.  As she's sitting with the TYB, Ranger Creepy shows up.

"Hey, good-lookin', brought you some coffee and a donut,"

and really?  He shows up with coffee and a donut just for Cheese, but brings nothing for anyone else?  Okay, sure, that sounds realistic.  Before he leaves, he tells her to "come by for a refill" before she leaves and I HATE THIS MOVIE SO MUCH.

It's at this point when one of the TYB asks, "You got a trail name?"  Cheese is all what's-that, and then GODFUCKINGDAMNIT she is given her official trail name:  "The Queen on the PCT."

My notes read, "STUPID STUPID STUPID STUPID, GODDAMNIT, STOP PLAYING SIMON AND GARFUNKEL SONGS."

And that's all I can deal with today.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

The Stupid Fucking Movie, Part Five

I was having such a good day.  I mean it, such a good day.  I was up at 3:30, took a long shower, drove to the coast and spent a couple hours walking along the beach in the moonlight (if you've never watched the waves of the Pacific come crashing ashore in the moonlight, your life is missing something).  Then I got to experience a marvelous sunrise-- the sky turned pink and the waves became ice blue-- and it was peaceful and magnificent and I felt nothing but gratitude for the simple fact that I was alive.  I walked a few more hours as the world woke up and finished my walk before noon.

Such a good day.

Then I got home and remembered what I had to do today, and nothing can take a dump on a perfect day more than having to write about goddamned Cheryl Strayed and her stupid fucking movie.

 
 
 
 
 
I HATE THIS SO MUCH.
 
 
Goddamnit, where were we.  Cheese was throwing a big fit about that poster I like.  Right.  Then, M. Night Shyamalan apparently had a 5-second directorial guest spot because when Cheese walks out into the hallway, her mom is standing smack in the middle of it, all dead and stuff, and what the fuck is this about.
 
Don't think the flashbacks suddenly stopped in the previous twenty minutes of the film.  THEY CONTINUE.
 
(I think I forgot to mention that Cheryl Strayed's very own daughter plays Young Cheese in the movie.  She does.  My bad.)
 
OOOOOOOOOOOHHHHHHHHHH, CHRIST, random flashback to Cheese's childhood and without warning, her dad is threatening to give Young Cheese a knuckle sandwich and I'm so confused.  Back to the trail and Cheese whispers, "knuckle sandwich," and then flashback, Cheese's mom packs up the kids and leaves, trail again, flashback again, trail, flashback in which Cheese's mom returns to the house and Big Bad Dad is there making eggs and bacon for everyone and this movie is so awful.
 
THIS MOVIE IS SO AWFUL.
 
Back to the trail, and this time Cheese is attributing a Flannery O'Connor quote to herself, something about new shoes and I don't even care at this point.
 
FLASHBACK AGAIN, I CAN HARDLY BELIEVE IT, and Cheese is scattering her mother's ashes, and then stuffs some large chunks of her mom's bones into her mouth and I loudly exhale, "OOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHH," as Cheese munches on her mom's bones.  THIS IS SO MUCH WORSE THAN THE BOOK.
 
Oh, god, heroin flashback time.
 
FUCK THIS MOVIE RIGHT IN THE FACE.  You know what?  I *love* bad movies.  Like, movies that are so bad that they're fucking wonderful.  If I had to review the movie "The Day After Tomorrow," I would be so excited to do so that I would call in sick to work just so I could do it because that movie is so magnificently horrible that it's unbelievably entertaining and I would love every minute of tearing it apart.  THIS MOVIE IS A STEAMING PILE OF CRAP CAIRN.  I hate this movie so much.  GODDAMNIT, SO MUCH.
 
Oh, fuck me, heroin time.
 
Cheese is with Joe and they're doing heroin and blah blah blah and then he finally injects heroin into Cheese's ankle as Cheese's voiceover says, "we were never gonna shoot it," and then suddenly Cheese is sitting on the street while some dude (Joe?) is dancing badly in front of her to the song "More more more (how do you like it)" and Cheese is all cracked out and out of it and fucking please.  I was rolling my eyes too violently to catch how suddenly some dude was putting a knife to her throat and stealing all of her bits of money, but I caught up just in time for Cheese to give him the finger as he walked away (Yeah! That'll learn 'im!) and BLAM back on the trail and she gives the finger to... I don't even know.
 
Flashback time again because of course, and Paul shows up to rescue Cheese from her big heroin disaster.  Since everything was so fucking stupid, let's just refer to my notes for what happened next:
 
"CAR FIGHT!"
"Paul is mad!" 

And that's that.  TRAIL TIME AGAIN!

Cheese is drinking water and she doesn't have much left (let's remember how the dude at the store warned her about water in the next stretch), but she drinks even more and then I STAB MYSELF IN THE FACE REPEATEDLY because she takes the remaining water in her bottle AND POURS IT ALL OVER HER HEAD AND OMFG OMFG OMFG OMFG ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME, HOW STUPID CAN SOMEONE BE, OH MY GOD, DON'T MAKE ME DO IT, OH GOD, IT'S GONNA HAPPEN--

 
 
Too late.  That happened.
 
HOW FUCKING STUPID CAN YOU BE, I CAN'T EVEN BEGI--
 
Oh, fuck it.
 
Cheese reaches the next potential water source and of course it's empty.  Cheese flips through her guidebook and then she is suddenly lying in her tent and I don't know how any of this made any sense to anyone who saw the movie but neglected to read the book.  Fuck me, I READ THE BOOK AND GOD HELP ME, I HAVE IT MEMORIZED AT THIS POINT, and the movie still confuses me to no end.  I can't even imagine how confused non-readers must have felt.
 
Oh, jesus, I guess it's morning-time and Cheese is frantically licking the condensation off of her tent and pffffffffffft, nice touch, Hornsby. 
 
I guess it's Day 58 now and Cheese rubs some random shrubbery into her hands and inhales like an insane person and whatever, who cares, this adds nothing to anything.
 
OMG, SO THIRSTY, and suddenly a mucky puddle appears, so Cheese gets out her water purifier and pumps a bunch of sludge.  She pops in her iodine pills and the voiceover lets us know that it will take 30 minutes for the water to be safe and goddamnit, here come the rapey hunters.
 
I just literally smacked myself super hard in the face with both hands.  I regret doing this.  My face hurts as much as my brain does now.
 
Hunters are thirsty and Cheese tells them that she can give them water as long as it's filtered first and I can't even bother with how stupid this scene is, but she offers to pump them some water as long as they have something she can pump it into.  In the book, Rapey Hunters had Pepsi cans, but I guess Hornsby didn't feel as threatened by Pepsi-drinkers as Cheese did, so they have *beer* cans in the movie because that makes it rapey-er.  Also, Redhead Tall (who is not a redhead, nor is he noticeably tall in the movie) ALSO *SMOKES CIGARETTES* AND HOLY SHIT, YOU KNOW HE'S EVIL NOW.  Non-Redhead-Tall says, "How can we kill the time?" and Sandy says, "I can think of some ways," and I wonder what a doctor would say about me rolling my eyes so violently like this.  I don't feel like it's healthy.  Sandy says, "She's got a real nice figure, doesn't she?" and all I can think is CANKLES CANKLES CANKLES, YOU FUCKING WISH IT WERE REESE OUT THERE and I will see all of you in hell, if it exists.  I'll be the one trapped in a cage with Cheryl Strayed and a bunch of spiders.
 
Goddamnit, Rapey McRapersons finally pack up and leave when Cheese starts packing up and whew, that was close.  Cheese goes back and starts settling in for the night and then BLAM Sandy returns to say things like, "You tricked us," and "I like your pants," and "they look good on you," and "they show off your hips and legs," and "tight little ass," and are you fucking kidding me, no one talks like this, especially about Cheryl "Cankles" Strayed and fuck this stupid bullshit.
 
Non-Redhead-Tall shouts out from the woods and Little-Guy Sandy finally leaves, but Cheese goes Full Cheese and *runs* through the wilderness with her 80-pound pack and, pfffffffft, I'm done for today.



Wednesday, March 11, 2015

T-Shirt Contest: The Winners!

Okay, I left voting open for a week and that's long enough for me.  Thanks to all of you who voted-- I love how most of you decided to send me your votes all secret-like.  'Merica!

I know that I said there would only be one winner, but there are two because I make the rules and get to change them whenever I want.


Winner By Popular Vote:

TORI!

"I don't always hike the PCT, but when I do, I don't."
 
 
Winner by my vote (and also a close second in the Popular Vote):
 
 
Mercer!
 
"My daughter is sort of a hair cutting expert."
 
 
Congratulations to our two winners.  You may now gloat and gloat and gloat.  As soon as I receive the sizes of our winners, I will immediately order and send out two totally fucking awesome Sacred Bob Marley T-Shirts and two bottles of Snapple Lemonade autographed by yours truly.  I'm hoping that Tori and Mercer will be so kind as to send me photos of them wearing their totally fucking awesome t-shirts so I can post them on here as an update.
 
 
Thanks to everyone who played; you guys are a riot.
 
(I haven't forgotten that I still have the rest of the stupid movie to review.  I was hoping that maybe the contest would distract you for a little while.)
 
Until next time, friends.
Califohioan



Wednesday, March 4, 2015

T-Shirt Contest: All of the Entries!

Holy shit, you guys.  Well done.
 
I'll admit it, I definitely have a few favorites out of all of these, but because I want to be as diplomatic about this as possible, I want your help to pick the winner.  I will now post every single entry and you can cast your vote.  You can definitely vote more than once-- and I encourage this-- by picking your favorite caption for *each* photo.  Just don't pick one caption and then vote for it a million times because I will ignore your votes and then make fun of you for picking one caption a million times.  This isn't a government-regulated contest; I get to make my own rules and my rules state that I can be a douchebag.  Truth be told, I already have a winner in my mind (because let's remember, the contest was to see who could make *me* laugh the hardest), but I'm admittedly torn between an handful of these and that's where you all come in.
 
I've tried to label things in the easiest way possible.  1a, 1b, 1c, etc.  2a, 2b, 2c, etc.  When placing your vote, please, for the love of Cheese, vote using these labels.  I'm not a wizard.
 
As always, you may vote either in the comment section or by email.  Go to town, you magnificent people.
 
 

1.
1a) Woman overcomes fetal alcohol syndrome, uses Oscar stage pass to impress then sleep with best boy grip named Scooter.

1b) "My necklace represents the 72 rattlesnakes I almost stepped on when I was on the PCT!"

1c) "My daughter is sort of a hair cutting expert."

1d)  Hope no notices this little twerp behind me hiked more than I did.

1e) "In thy foul throat thou liest" -- WS

1f) hope no one notices that the movie poster and book cover behind me shows rabbit brush blooming in the fall near Ridgecrest, but I was there in the spring.



2.
 
2a) "Turtle goes out, turtle goes in.  Turtle goes out, turtle goes in."
 
2b) Reese: "Aww, look at da cute kitty!"
    Cheryl: "cow cow cow"
 
2c) Reese:  Fuck it, Cheryl, a rattlesnake!
    Cheryl: Okay, if you hold the head.
 
2d) Shit, I forgot I didn't want to wear this dress tonight... I'm totally planning on wearing it to the Golden Globes. Maybe nobody will notice me. Oh, my god, do you think they won't notice me? They *have* to notice me. Don't they? Maybe if this fucking bitch would stop hogging all the questions. C'mon... notice me. Notice me, guys. NOTICE ME!
 
2e) "I look amazing, as usual, and Poon shows up drunk in her pajamas. That bitch is ruining my life!"
(*Poon = Cheese's personal nickname for Reese WithersPOON that she claims outwardly is cute and quirky but knows full well that it's an offensive, petulant, jealous dig.)
 
2f) Got the mustard. Got the ketchup. Let's make a CHEESEburger!
 



3.
3a) Reese: "wow"  Cheryl: "wow"  Reese: "wow"  Cheryl: "wow"
 
3b) Coming this summer: Pokeholes and Bareback, two unusual detectives who are also whores.
 
3c) Reese: Cheryl, are you touching my pudendum?  Cheryl: That's "PUDENDA".
 
3d) "Travel Oregon" -- one way or the other.
 
3e) CHEESE!
 
3f) Look... see.... if I stretch my smile out a little to the side like this, I have this totally adorable dimple like Jennifer Lawrence. She's so pretty and great and popular. Her dimple is totally fake, though. Mine's completely real. I hate Jennifer Lawrence.
 
 
4.
4a) Cheryl: I love you SO much I could eat your bones right now.
    Reese: I had BETTER get a fucking Oscar for this shit.
 
4b) I'm glad you're not dead like my dead mom. Or her dead horse. Or your dead career.
 
4c) Seldom-Seen and Thought Of As Fictional, The One-Eyed, One-Horned Flying Purple People-Eater Engulfs A Small Blonde Woman And Prepares To Devour Her Prey.
 
4d) Cheryl: Ouch!  What was that?  Reese: My soft, knowing dagger in your back...
 
4e) Midwestern farm girls shouldn't wear magenta.
 
4f) Thought bubble from Reese's cute little head: It's moments like this that I wish I had listened to my agent and auditioned for the part of Llama Boy.
 
4g) Cheryl makes a cameo in the profoundly dramatic "Bigfoot Rape" scene.
 
4h) This Valentine's Day, tell her just how much you're barely tolerating her by making it completely obvious how grossed out you are to touch her.
 
4i) Reese: "If this bitch ruins my hair on show night, I will CUT her!"
 
4j)  "Careful of my left breast. It's hangin' a little low tonight."
 
4k) Reese: For fuck's sake, lay off the Snapple and Doritos, it's not like you're an actual hiker. 
 
 
5.
5a)  I disarmed these little land mines that I found in the middle of a coiled rattlesnake on the PCT.
 
5b) out of modesty, I don't show my perfect teeth in one out of ten photographs (two, if you want to be an asshole about it).
 
5c)  He just came in my mouth a little.
 
5d) I just heard that Califohioan was going to review the audiobook version of "Wild"
 
5e) (in an oozing, condescending tone) "'Califohioan?' Oh please. You clearly stole that from me. That one guy in the book that I describe completely vaguely so no one can ever figure out how who I claim to be hiking with gave me that nickname on mile 7,528 of the PCT because I am the only woman ever to conquer California and Ohio on the same day. You're such a poser."
 

 
 
6.
 
6a) Is that a Snapple in your pocket???  Cuz I would totes bone you and drink that Snapple.
 
6b)  "Help me out, here. Which of these eyeliners make me look less ripped?"
 
6c) Oh, don't mind me... I just had my first whole beer I've ever drunk in my life just now backstage!
 
7.
7a) One of these things is not like the other.  One of these things just doesn't belong.
 
7b) Cheryl: " I could totally eat the two of you up! No, seriously, I could polish off the both of you in like 15 minutes. I've done it before" 
 
 
8.
8a) Cheryl: We're getting lucky tonight, Reesey-buddy!  These guys totally want us.  Reese: Whataya mean "we," Starved?
 
8b) Cheryl (to Reese): My neck gets sore like that, too, when I put too many bones in my mouth in one day. We'll just find a Swiss hippie girl to rub some oil on it and it will feel much better.
 
8c) Come on Reese, I finished the worthless book, you can finish the worthless movie.
 
8d) "Are we having fun yet?!"
 
8e) "Did you see that sound man I just banged on the break? His penis was so small but I just ate and ate and ate it!"
 
9.
9a) Cheryl: I'm an EXPERT hiker and navigationalist! The exit is thattaway!!!   Reese: (in stage whisper) Stop embarrassing me you fat sow, it's over there!
 
9b) We were pointing and pointing and pointing...
 
9c) Cheryl: I fucked him & him & him. Oh, I gave him a BJ.  Reese: Him, too?
 
9d) Cheryl: I just shook George Clooney's hand with organic vaginal sponge juice all over my finger!
Reese: Kewl! So did I!
 
9e) Okay, on the count of three, which way is the PCT?
 
9f) We snowed you and you and you and you.....
 
9g) #9>, <#9  (I am baffled by this entry, but in fairness, I'm including it)
 

 
 
10.
10a) Dazzleteeth ©®™ Cheryl's way of making sure people focus on her and not on how much taller, thinner and more attractive Laura Dern is than her.
 
10b) Dazzleteeth ©®™ If you smile enough, people will be blinded to your lies
 
10c) Cheryl: OMG this bitch is crazier than I am!  Laura: OMG this bitch is crazier than I am!  Dude in the background: Who fucking stole the condom out of my wallet?
 
10d) Cheryl: I loved your father in Nebraska.
Laura: Wasn't he great in that movie? He was nominated for an Academy Award.
Cheryl: What movie? I was just bragging that I fucked him last time I was in Omaha.
 
10e)  "The trees were tall, but Laura Dern was taller."
 
10f) Cheryl: Oh my skin looks so bad under these harsh lights! They'll see every bump and clogged pore!
Laura: Don't worry, the photographer will "Cheryl Strayed" the picture in Photoshop.
 
 
 
Victoria (Tori, the guest blogger), ignored the rules and left all of these comments in no particular order because FUCK, YEAH, TORI!  FUCK RULES!  I will now label them accordingly because hell yes, I will:
 
 
V1) Pic of Cheryl: "Yellow blazing since 1996"

V2) "Got abortion flakes?"

V3) "Got condoms?"

V4) Pic of Smokey the Bear: "only you can prevent hiking the $trayed way."

V5) A Photoshop of Cheryl waking up, ala Godfather, in a bed with a horse head.

V6) "Are you there, Bob? It's me, Cheryl."

V7) "Condoms? Check.
Abortion flakes? Check.
Profound stupidity? Check.
Hiking the $trayed way!"

V8) "cow. Cow. COW"

V9) "If a boot falls off a cliff on the PCT and no one was there hear it, does it make a best seller?"

V10) "You had me at Snapple"

V11) "Vote for Paco!"

V12) "I don't always do peyote, but when I do, it's in the back of a sketchy milk truck"

V13)
"Stupid
Trail
Rookie
Ate
Your
Engorged
Dick" - use the first letter of each word

V14) "Hasty abortion? $200
Poorly fitted hiking boots? $129
PCT Guidebook? $19.99
Putting your fucktardary in print and on film? Priceless."

V15) "Cheryl $trayed: keeping it real since 199?...oh! Why start now?"

V16) "I don't always hike the PCT, but when I do, I don't."

V17) Pic of a small Fox. "Mom?"
 
 
 
Also, I will include an unofficial entry from a friend of mine who didn't want to join:
 
Unofficial) "I wanna join in, but I'm so bad at it!  All I can come up with is, 'I'm Cheryl and I'm real dumb.  Arrrgggg!'  I don't think I'll win."
 
 
 
Okay, everybody.  Those are your choices.  Help me out.