Freshman Summer August: We Must

In August, Jess faces the difficulty of integrating friends from one area of your life into another. Jane, her best friend from Columbia, comes for a visit. Jane can’t wait to meet “the famous Marcus Flutie,” which is part of the problem. Jess has told so many stories about Marcus and his past, that Jane already has already made up her mind about him, proclaiming that white t-shirts are his new shtick.  Ugh, Jane is totally annoying. She comes to Pineville and criticizes everything. Jess makes fun of Pineville all the time, but growing up in Pineville means that it’s always going to be a part of her. So when Jane comes in and starts mocking everything, it seems like an attack on Jessica.

But as much as Jane annoys me at the beginning of this section, it’s Marcus that irritates me most by the end. Even though Jessica is dating Marcus and they’re closer than ever, he is still elusive, his thoughts unknowable. That makes it hard to remember that he’s a person who can make mistakes and be judgmental—especially when he’s spouting all of his Buddhist mantras. There’s a difference between actually being game with your friends and pretending to be game to fit in at a job, but Marcus doesn’t see that. At True, being game was a projection, rather than genuine interest and enthusiasm. Maybe Jess and crew go to The Glam Slam Metal Jam in a hipster-ironic kind of way initially, but they end up having a great time. Because they’re the only people in costume, their outlandish attire seems brave rather than mocking.

Marcus refuses to give up one day and go to Glam Slam Metal Jam, but then he expects Jess to drop everything and road trip across the country with him. Sure, it’s something they’ve talked about, but his timing is awful. Not having money to fly back is definitely a legitimate reason for Jessica to veto the idea. It’s not like her parents would give her money to go and she’d never ask Bethany. Had roadtripping been their plan for the whole summer, she could have been saving or gotten a cheap ticket earlier.

Side note: I will now call Scotty “the dirigible” forever.

No recommendation today, but tomorrow I’ll post about Jessica Darling’s It List #1: The (Totally Not) Guaranteed Guide to Popularity, Prettiness & Perfection!

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