Wednesday, February 09, 2005

George W. Bush {hearts} Charlotte Simmons

Our President is a READER! Yes, by shucks golly, he IS!

Our President once told us his favorite book was The Very Hungry Caterpillar. But now he's reading BIG books. He's reading that REALLY REALLY LONG BOOK, I Am Charlotte Simmons! Aren't you impressed? I shore am!

Actually, Pres. Bush says he has read every one of Tom Wolfe's novels, including the lengthy A Man In Full. But he is having a good deal of fun with the "sex-soaked" ramblings about the virgin hillbilly Charlotte Simmons, who attends an Eastern College and is shocked--SHOCKED, I SAY--at the activities of her fellow students.

The book was almost universally panned by critics; many called it "out of touch," and several pointed to the laughable sex scenes. Indeed, Wolfe won the Bad Sex in Fiction Award for the following (he claimed later the passage was SUPPOSED to be bad):
"Hoyt began moving his lips as if he were trying to suck the ice cream off the top of a cone without using his teeth ... Slither slither slither slither went the tongue, but the hand that was what she tried to concentrate on, the hand, since it has the entire terrain of her torso to explore and not just the otorhinolaryngological caverns ... "
According to the International Herald Tribune, Pres. Bush loves I Am Charlotte Simmons and is "enthusiastically recommending it to friends." Just what about Charlotte's tale is tugging at the President's... erm... heartstrings? And WHY is the White House refusing to comment on the President's new curl-up reading material?

If you don't have time to crawl through Wolfe's 676-page tome yourself (I don't!), there's always The Guardian's Digested Read, a mere page. It opens:
"Well, ah-ull be darned," said Charlotte's mother, "Fancy a hillbilly's daughter go-un to Dupont".

Charlotte grimaced at the way her mammy said ah-ull and go-un. She wished she would shut up. "I am Charlotte Simmons," she said to herself.

The cleverest girl ever to leave Sparta, North Carolina felt crippled inside. Her roommate was so posh.

"So here we are in our fuck-pad," grinned Beverley. "Can I use all the cupboard space? You don't have any clothes."

Charlotte bit her tongue. "I am Charlotte Simmons," she said to herself. She had never been amongst people who cussed. She looked down at her floral dress. At least it covered her breasts, whatever they were. Charlotte knew men might want to touch them, but she didn't know why as she had never read Cosmopolitan. "I am Charlotte Simmons," she said to herself. {more}

In somewhat related news, there's speculation that sales for Charlotte are not meeting expectations. Only in the world of Tom Wolfe could several weeks on the New York Times bestseller list and 250,000 copies sold be disappointing. More here.