Friday, 11 October 2013

The Post Where We All Want to Punch Chip

It's time for another instalment of The Corrections Readalong! Check out the other posters and see if I'm right about this Chip thing (I'm right).

Let's jump right in, shall we?

I was not a fan of the first "chapter" or section thing, wherein Franzy tries to tries to earn the capital "L" in "Literature." There's a lot of talking for the sake of talking, using more words than necessary because those words are, admittedly, beautiful. So I do kind of like it, or I appreciate it, but if it weren't for this readalong, I would have walked away from the book. Which would have been tragic, because I would have missed Chip.

Oh, Chip. Chip is both Jonathan Franzen and, worse, Brian from Family Guy, with his script and his Mona turning into his protagonist's ex-wife's "diabolical lesbian lover."

By page 35 in my edition, Franzen had succeeded in making me hate Chip's self-pitying guts. I mean, he serves "retro joke desserts." He serves chocolate ironically

After reading about Franzy's dislike of consumerism and our over investment in technology, Chip really does seem to echo some of Franzen's actual opinions, and, after Chip hears Melissa's rebuttal on that last day of the semester, maybe even expresses some of Franzen's real doubts. But, if I'm following that course, Melissa must be a part of Franzen, too. I don't know, doesn't matter. And it doesn't matter because on the very next page Chip is eating chips with MAYONNAISE. Is that a thing? How have we allowed that to be a thing?

Then this happens: "He ate arugula ("rocket," the old farmers called it) so strong it made his eyes water, like a paragraph of Thoreau."

And then, suddenly, I'd read to the end of the section. It turns out I'm genuinely liking hating Chip this book. This is why you should always go into things with super low expectations.

Also, obviously Chip loves this Gitanas guy who looks exactly like him. Obviously he does.

Finally, The most important thing I learned during this week's section of the readalong is that someone left Chip a chocolate statuette of Michael Jackson.

I'm so happy we live in a world where that could be a thing.

And that's it! Here's your unrelated GIF of the week:

Thanks for hosting, Alley-kins.


  1. Ahaha you and Sarah used the same Stewie Griffin gif and made the Brian/Franzen/Chip connection. This is why I love our readalongs!

    This is not to discount your other gifs. I love them all. I keep wanting to say "Especially Jack White" but then I go "NO WAIT, especially sexy dragons. but then there's grabby hands" So just know you have done an excellent job here.

    What if Melissa is the part of Franzen he WISHES he could be? A super confident crazy girl who does not get nearly angry enough when Chip jizzes on her keyboard. Or angry enough at him ever.

    1. THAT IS AWESOME. Another point for the hive mind.

      That must be it: Franzen just wishes he pirouetted more. Also, eeeewwwww, keyboard.

  2. Oh god I forgot about the 'retro joke desserts'. Chip is the worst.

    Oh god, and Alley just reminded me of poor Melissa's computer in her comment. Chip really is the absolute pits.

    In America/Canada are chips potato chips or fries? Because I was confused in that mayo + chips bit.

    1. I definitely took it to mean chips as in fries because he was eating them in Scotland, but yes. In America/Canada chips means crisps. BUT STILL.

    2. We eat mayo with chips/fries here in Aus, although it's like sweet chilli mayo or herb and garlic mayo.

      It's kind of infuriating when an author doesn't stick with their language meanings. I mean, I expect the American interpretation of chips or whatever but if he keeps borrowing English interpretation I'm going to get confused a lot.

  3. Jack White...I find your confusion at this situation ADORABLE. Also, you look a lot like Tim Burton.

    Oh and hi, Kayleigh!

  4. Aw, Alley-kins! That's cute. Imma use that.

    CHIP IS SO TERRIBLE AND IT IS SO EASY AND FUN TO HATE HIM. I definitely think he's a bit Franzen, BUT I feel like Franzen is at least acknowledging his awfulness? He's not like 'Heyyyy look at this terrible duuuude, don't you love him?' If he did that, it would be terrrrrrrible.

    I'm with Aussie Kayleigh on this chips and mayo thing. Because if it's chips as in fries with mayo then that is delicious and I won't hear a word against it, even if ketchup is the ultimate sauce. But if it's chips as in CRISPS and mayo, then that's super super weird and I won't have it. I WON'T, KAYLEIGH.

    1. Franzen absolutely acknowledges Chip's awefulness - even Chip does - which is very, very good.

      REALLY THOUGH FRIES WITH MAYO? Just, just mayo, sitting there, on a potato? I don't know about you guys.

    2. Fries with flavored mayo (as in it no longer tastes like mayo) is delicious.

  5. Thank you for reminding me of the "retro joke desserts" because I said a big mental FUCK YOU CHIP at that. Fondue is delicious no matter when or how it is eaten. It is molten deliciousness and Chip is too much of an asshole to understand its beauty.

    Whew, I feel better after getting that off my chest.

    In the class scene where Melissa dresses Chip down, I think we're supposed to completely side with her on that. Because she's right -- everything Chip wants to talk about is bullshit -- which means Franzen is poking fun at literary theory/criticism through Chip's ridiculousness. And that makes me actually like Franzen for a bit. Hmmm.


Talk to me, internets.