Part Thirty-Five, Chapter Seventeen, Part One: Cheryl Doesn't Fuck Three Guys
Chapter seventeen starts out with Cheryl comparing her hike through the Oregon section of the PCT to hopscotch. Hopscotch. Cheryl thinks this is profoundly clever and will repeatedly make this comparison even though it's beyond fucking stupid and only a person who doesn't understand hiking would compare hiking the PCT to a children's playground game, but then again, Cheryl is just so amazing that I'm sure... oh, forget it.
Cheryl has 334 miles left to skippity-skip until reaching her final destination and she makes a big deal about how there are gonna be fresh, wild berries to be eaten along the way. I immediately hope she won't be able to tell the difference between edible and poisonous berries and will die a painful, horrible death, or at least suffer something akin to what I'm going through by writing this fucking review. Sadly, this doesn't happen.
She dazzles us with her awesome writing skills:
"It was cold. It was hot."
She complains about her "tree-bark-plucked-dead-chicken flesh" on her hips again, claiming that it "grew another layer." Her feet hurt, blah, blah, blah, she starts hiking half-days-- "going only seven or eight miles" and whatever, Cheryl, those sound like full days for you-- and then writes another sentence fragment about her stupid feet because she doesn't understand how sentences work:
"Like I'd done something profound and irreversible to them by carrying all this weight over so many miles of punishing terrain."
She ends the paragraph with, "at day's end I was still pretty much shattered," and just shut the fuck up already. I'm so tired of your bullshit.
She writes more lies about her pretend hike that I can't even deal with anymore and ends it with,
"...when I would collapse, utterly demolished, in my tent."
Just fucking stop. Profound, shattered, demolished... just stop. I can't do this anymore.
She reaches Shelter Cove Resort, "bored with the trail," and immediately buys a bottle of Snapple lemonade because of course. The man behind the counter tells her that she can camp for free and that there are dollar-showers available.
"I only had ten dollars left," and goddamnit, what is wrong with you.
She locates the showers and,
"When I stepped inside, I was pleased to see that it was a one-person affair."
What the fuck did you expect it be, some sort of wilderness shower orgy? Just-- I don't even.
She takes a look at herself in the mirror before taking a shower to take inventory of her exquisite beauty and I shit you not, she says this big pile of nonsense:
"It wasn't only my feet that had been destroyed by the trail, but it seemed my hair had been too... as if I were slowly but surely turning into a cross between Farrah Fawcett in her glory days and Gunga Din at his worst."
Goddamnit, Cheryl. First of all, you and your fat head and your cankles did not, do not and will never look anything like "Farrah Fawcett in her glory days." Allow this picture to illustrate:
Nice legs, Farrah.
Second, what's with the Gunga Din reference. That makes no fucking sense whatsoever. This is yet another example of Cheryl attempting to seem super smart and well-read and failing miserably. Go ahead, look up Rudyard Kipling's "Gunga Din." Tell me if I'm missing something, like how Cheryl is just like an Indian water-boy who sacrifices her own life to save someone who treated her badly, and how this would in any way translate to her appearance. Go ahead. Enlighten me.
She finishes with her stupid shower, goes back to loiter on the porch of the store and BAM:
Here come The Three Young Bucks.
Three young men appear and once again Cheryl uses her super-human power of deduction to conclude that these men are PCT hikers. She goes full out in describing them:
"One was tall. One was blond. One had intense eyes."
The Blond One says that they'd been following her "a long way," and Mr. Intense Eyes claims that they saw her "tracks on the trail," while The Tall One says, "We've been reading your notes in the trail register," AND WHERE ARE THESE FUCKING NOTES. I WANT TO SEE THE TRAIL REGISTER FROM 1995 AND I CANNOT, FOR THE LIFE OF ME, FIND IT ANYWHERE.
They tell her that they'd been trying to determine her age and,
"'I hope you're not disappointed,' I said, and we laughed and blushed."
Really? All four of you blushed? Stupid.
One of them asks if she's been given a trail name yet and Cheryl lies, saying, "Not that I know of," even though I seem to remember 'Hapless Hiker' being her given moniker a few chapters ago. Of course, Cheryl didn't like that name-- she wanted to be the "hard-ass motherfucking Amazonian queen"-- so she's going to just ignore that like it never happened. She goes on to explain that Rick, Josh and Richie were known as The Three Young Bucks and spends a paragraph gushing over them--
"They hadn't even stopped in Ashland. They hadn't danced to the Dead or eaten chewable opium or had sex with anyone pressed up against a rock on a beach."
--and geez, it's like they don't understand hiking at all.
Because Cheryl is Cheryl,
"Being in their company felt like a holiday."
They all camp together for the night and pick up their resupply boxes in the morning. When Cheryl opens her box, she realizes that the $20 she'd been looking forward to was not in the box, and she tries to avoid having what should have been a complete meltdown because omg, there are boys around.
"It was embarrassing to me that I was constantly broke,"
and good, you should be embarrassed, you stupid twat. She loads her food into her bag, "sick with the knowledge that I'd have to hike 143 miles to my next box with only six dollars and twelve cents" and what the fuck, Cheryl.
She and the Three Young Bucks all head out and she claims that she was "crisscrossing with them all day," and I can't even begin to understand the logistics of that, but I've given up trying to make any logical sense of her bullshit story. She talks about how "their ribs showed right through" when they took their shirts off and then tries to pretend that she's not obsessed with her own appearance even though she clearly is because she's bringing it up. Again.
"I didn't much care anymore whether I was fat or thin."
That's probably for the best, Cankles.
The Three Young Bucks leave her in the dust because she can't hike with anyone for more than 5 minutes and then, upon stopping for the night, she rips off another toenail, which is the fifth one now and it's also the fifth time I don't believe that she's ripped off one of her toenails.
She climbs into her tent and starts reading The Ten Thousand Things until she hears an owl and tries to communicate with it.
"'Who-whoo,' I called back to it, and the owl was silent.
"'Who-whoo,' I tried again.
"'Who-whoo,' it replied."
Thank god this day is finally over.