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Chapter 4: SMIZE Rules
There is no narrator at the beginning of this chapter. In honor of our dearly-departed narrator, I offer this song as a memorial.
The SMIZE was made up of ornate eye-shadow-like flourishes in strokes of taxicab-, Dijon-, baby-chick-, banana-, and lemonade-yellow.What? Did you run out of yellow things? How about lemon-yellow or urine-yellow?
Thinner than a sheet of paper, it was surprisingly heavy, and seemed to hum ever so slightly as it rested in Tookie's palms.Of course, Tookie immediately hands the SMIZE off to her mom. After we get some verbal abuse from her mother to her, and her father to her mother.
As the SMIZE was pulled away from her, Tookie felt a pang; her moment of being special in some way had vanished as quickly as it had arrived.You know, I might sympathize with this . . . except Tookie knows nearly every language on the planet. That is not only incredibly "special", but it pretty much guarantees that she has her pick of jobs in the future. Well, assuming that this universe follows even basic logic, which might be a pretty big assumption to make. A little flag pops out of the SMIZE and words begin to form on it. It greets the family by name, causing Tookie's father to assume it can see them. He panics and tries to tidy up. Tookie's mother begins reading the words on the flag.
"The wearer of the SMIZE has a ninety-one percent chance of being discovered on The Day of Discovery . . ."* Sigh *
Son of Math InterludeFrom the Prologue:
These SMIZEs, which boost your odds of being chosen by ninety-one percent . . .91% increase =/= 91% chance. And it also makes it even dumber if anyone who gets a SMIZE has a 91% chance. You know why? Because it's pretty much a guarantee that any girl with a SMIZE will win, which makes the contest rigged. And why an arbitrary number like 91% anyway? Are the girls judged on a 100 point scale? Is there some numerological meaning? 7 x 13 = 91, therefore ninety-one is both lucky and unlucky and WHO CARES? This is middle school math! How do you screw this up without anyone catching it? Blatant Mistakes + 1.
Back to the Story
". . . which, we elated to inform you, improves the De La Crème offspring's chances of fame and fortune. Perhaps you'd be able to rid yourselves of this ramshackle asylum should your spawn reach the pinnacle of success."I'll admit, I found this mildly amusing . . . until I thought about how I live in a place that's falling apart. Then again, a mansion that's falling apart is still a mansion, which makes it worth much, much more than where I live was when it was new . . . I think I'll settle for saying that the De La Crèmes and the SMIZE are all jerks, and leave it at that.
"Might I bring your attention to the myriad of golden colors on the SMIZE.""Myriad of golden colors?" Just weird is that wording. (And can it be "myriad" if it's just different shades of the same color?)
"When choosing your attire for The Day of Discovery, pay close attention so that your ensemble complements and does not clash with this precious SMIZE specimen. Many of the left-behind nine percent of SMIZE holders during previous Days of Discovery deviated from dashing dress decisions. You have been warned!"Forgive my ignorance of fashion . . . but are there any colors that actually clash with gold? Then again, I think the SMIZE is silly-looking enough to clash with any wardrobe decision, so what do I know?
"May your clothes click, your hair shimmer, your face glimmer, and your stride glide.""Your face glimmer?" This is just begging for a Twilight/Modelland crossover fic.
"Bonne chance, De La Crèmes! And maybe, just maybe, we'll see you at Modelland."Mon ami, random French does not make you sound intelligent. Aleatorio español, en el otro lado . . .
"Now for the rules: The wearer of the SMIZE must only wear it in the Day of Discovery Square. It must only be worn by a female.Stupid sexist rule . . . would it kill a book aimed at girls and young women to include some male eye candy?
"Do not inform others that you possess a SMIZE. Although the SMIZE comes from water, do not get it wet."So, is that what it will take to get Gremlins 3 made? Probably not worth it. We then get an out-of-place Side-Effects Include... list.
"Violation of these rules may cause serious side effects: face-aches, nausea, vomiting, blurry vision, visions of fashion-police brutality . . ."O_O The fashion police are real? Excuse me. I need to go fortify my door. They won't take me alive!
". . . designer knock-offs, knocking you upside the head, stinging bees in your hair bonnet, biting wolves in cheap clothing."I swear I did not make this part up. Tookie angsts a bit that Myrracle is going to walk on The Day of Discovery "that mysterious, elusive, galvanizing event." What happens to the chosen is mysterious, but the event isn't. It's a public event that happens every year on the same day.
With the SMIZE's help, Myrracle was almost sure to go to Modelland, that misty, spooky, mysterious place atop the mountain . . . What actually happened there?I'm getting tired of the unnecessary, gratuitous, omnipresent adjectives. The family starts making plans, and Tookie is startled to hear she'll be coming, too.
"Yeah, why does she have to come?" Myrracle wrinkled her nose, looking slightly . . . jealous. Suddenly a tiny flutter of hope rose in Tookie's chest. Was it possible her parents wanted her to walk too?Of course, the De La Crèmes don't actually want her to come. They just want her to help Dudley with the clothes.
"I suppose it will be funner-er if you're there, Dookie," Myrracle said in a conciliatory tone.Sadly "Dookie" may actually be a step up from the name "Tookie." It all depends on your opinion on whether naming your child after feces or a butt is worse. Weirdly enough, this seems to be a legitimate accident on Myrracle's part. Myrracle's "friend" Brian laughs at her.
"Don't laugh at me!" Myrracle said, frustrated. "I'm on my periodical right now! It makes me forgetful!" "It's period, not periodical!" Tookie growled. Myrracle smirked. How do you know? You haven't even gotten yours yet!"Burn! Maybe? Not really . . . I will never understand why a monthly inconvenience is considered some sort of rite of passage. Naturally, Tookie is embarrassed by her lack of cramps and monthly bleeding. Myrracle bolts out of the room only to return in a "flamenco-style fuchsia costume" saying that she's going to wear it to T-DOD.
"It moves like a chow-chow dancer when I do my model dance!" "It's cha-cha, girl, not chow-chow." Brian stifled a snicker.Did you know there's an actual speech disorder that involves swapping one word for another? I doubt this is an accurate portrayal, but it's something to think about.
"And it's walk, not dance!" Mrs. De La Crème sounded like she was going to burst a blood vessel. "Besides, the dress is hideous, and has nothing to do with couture."With what now? Couture (noun): "The design and manufacture of fashionable clothes to a client's specific requirements." Thanks to Modelland and the Kindle's built-in dictionary, I learned a new word today. Doubt I'll ever use it, though. Creamy tells Tookie that the dress is hers now, before telling Tookie and Myrracle they'll be going to LaDorno. It's Tookie's job to pick up the dresses Myrracle tries on. Everyone leaves the room and then realizes that she forgot to tell her mom about nearly being brained by a slate tile.
Tookie dejectedly walked to her room, sadly realizing that the Forgetta-Girl had actually forgotten about her own forgettable self.The redundancy of that redundant sentence fills me with rage and ire.
Blatant Mistakes+1 for thinking a 91% increase is the same thing as a 91% chance. Total = 11
And with that, the SMIZE goes from near worthless to near essential. If only appearance was really as simple as putting on a rare and valuable (and stupid-looking) ornament.
Eye eye eye. Myrracle is still a more interesting character. Her flaws aren't only skin-deep! Maybe she and Tookie will both get chosen. Then we'll still have her around!
Wait, the narrator just disappeared? Who's telling the story now?
Each chapter was beginning with the narrator talking to the reader about what was happening via Infodumps. Then it would switch to third person narration for the actual story. Now, the book is sticking with third-person POV (no more talking to the reader directly). I hope it stays that way. It's much less annoying.
What's so annoying about it, dahling?
This is just begging for a Twilight/Modelland crossover fic. Fuck you, Lady Momus. Fuck you for putting that image in my head.
Hell no. Twilight is kilometers better than this!
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