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Last night's episode of Lady Marmalade(-Colored) picked up where the Jacqueline/Bouffant blowdown left off last week. And then things got worse. And then worse still! Mother and daughter are at wits end.
Oh Bouffant! What a terrible, smirking flop-demon she is. Just the pits. (Which just made me think of Bouffant's armpits and holy Moses that's an unpleasant thought — just imagine the sickly sweet astringent reek of floral deodorizers mixing with demon B.O. and other exotic stinks.) Last week she made Jacqueline cry and storm out of the restaurant (or at least to the darkened part of the restaurant) because she said "Well, at least I'm don't have a kid at 20," to her mother, who did have a kid at 20, that kid being Bouffant, the girl who said the nasty thing. Someone get Seamus Heaney up in this bitch to analyze these wheels within wheels! It was just a tremendously, gut-bustingly bad thing to say to your mother when all she's trying to tell you, a 20-year-old, is to, y'know, try to get a full-time job or go to school or something other than drink alcoholic sugar-sauce with your terrible pals and then whine and fart into the magazine basket when your mom asks you to watch your little brothers for a couple hours. That's all mom wants you to do, Bouffy! But you can't even do that. So you roll your eyes and make your mom cry when she tries, desperately, to impart a little advice to you. Ugh.
Yeah, so, Jacqueline was off crying in the dark place while Bouffant's dad, Scarhead (srsly, yikes with that thing. Bar fight?), tried to talk a little tough with his daughter and command her to go apologize to her mom. Bouffant at first fartingly refused, but eventually she acquiesced and trundled off to search for her mother in the restaurant's vast expanse of shadow rooms. Meanwhile Jacqui's husband was trying to talk her off the ledge, while also admitting that maybe Jacqueline is "always ready for a fight" when it comes to Bouffant. Which is kind of true! I mean, Jacqueline does snap pretty fast, but at the same time can you really blame her? If my daughter turned out like Bouffant (which she won't — my daughter will be willowy and weird and wear corrective lenses and move to Nova Scotia when she's 19 and live in a lighthouse and write mystery novels) I don't think I could even get thirty seconds into a conversation with that creep before I was shrieking and throwing water glasses and tearing at my face with bitten-nailed fingers. She is really, really frustrating. Jacqueline moaned in response to this and said that she just feels like she put so much work into raising her daughter and now she doesn't get to enjoy any of it. Chris seized on this as the root of the conflict, and... I don't know. That's definitely a part of the issue, but the best way to get Bouffant up off her bouffant and out into the working world is probably not to say "Your mom feels slighted that she can't enjoy you." Y'know? Like maybe just still make it about Bouffant at this crucial point and then later get into the whole Jacqueline will get something out of it too part? Does that make sense? I don't know, I just didn't think it was quite the brilliant point that Chris thought it was.
So yeah, that was that, and Bouffant came shuffling in and didn't really apologize and her dad kept prodding her while Jacqueline said she didn't want an apology because it would be fake, so they all stood there trying to do opposing things and eventually the screen just faded to black and Satie's Gymnopédies began playing softly and slowly and the screen read "Three years later..." and we were in the future. Except nope! No we were not. We were still in the exact shitty present and back at the house, a day or two after the restaurant freakdown, and Jacqueline and Bouffant were still at each other's jiggly throats. To make matters worse, they started fighting in front of Jacqueline's two little boys, which will be great memories for them as they get older and gnarled by adolescent emotions. Just fun memories of your mom and sister spewing acid at each other from different rooms while strange strangers with whirring cameras filmed it all. Just really good memories of childhood.
Anyway, the point is that they started talking about Bouffant's foolish plans to foolishly move to foolish California (just vague California, I hope she moves to Crescent City and marries a redwood) and Bouffant was like "I don't know why you're mad at me about this, it was your idea" and Jacqueline balked at that so Bouffant called her a bitch and Jacqueline stormed out of the room with the two boys but kept yelling at Bouffant from afar. Bouffy did more crocodile tear stuff and more eye rolling and eventually went up to her room while downstairs Jacqueline and Chris conferred and they decided, gulp, to kick her out of the house. Yup, they were done! Done like dinner. It was just too much. Too much brattiness, too much yelling, too much orange face cheez-whizzing into a nasty smirk. They'd had enough. Chris went up to tell Bouffant and there was a little mild wailing into a phone on Bouffant's part (if I were Chris or Jacqueline I'd rip that phone out of her hands on her way out the door, she wants to be attached to her stupid phone, she should pay for her stupid phone herself) and then it ended, again, before we really reached the end. Sigh.
Meanwhile in other frozen, rocky parts of New Jersey, Teresa and Giucey Joe were going to their lawyer's office to hear the news about this whole contract forging thing that Joe is in trouble with. The news was a mixed bag. The judge had found that Teresa's assets — meaning her
boobs and ass cook book earnings and, presumably, her salary for doing the show — cannot be touched, so that's good for them, but unfortunately Joe is still liable for the $260,000 or so that the business partner says he's owed. Joe and Teets' big takeaway from this? That you should never tell the truth! See, yup, Joe admitted that it was sometimes common practice to sign his partner's signature if the partner wasn't around, so he admitted to wrong doing, and now they're totally punishing him for admitting the truth! Hahah. Uh, did they think that the legal system was like if you stole the toy in Kindeegahtin and then told teacher about it later and gave it back and you didn't get in trouble because you told the troof? That's not how actual human adult crime works usually, guys! Hate to break it to ya. So yeah, now they've learned the important lesson that you should always, always lie when you are in trouble, because in the grownup world telling the truth is appreciated, of course, but it's not a get out of jail free card. Oh well. Teresa isn't going to divorce Joe because of this, though. No siree. Teresa said "I mean my Jewish friends are all 'I would have divorced him right away!!' But I'm Italian." Yiiikes, Teetsyfly. Yikes.
While this was going down, Teresa's cousin
Gonzo Kathy was putting together a "goddess" party as a way to display some of the food she hopes to cook for her catering business. The food was Middle Eastern, which I guess if you're counting Greece (Middle Eastern and Mediterranean food being similar to some degree?) the whole goddess thing works, but if not, not really. Also the goddess party turned out to just be the girls who are on the show standing around Kathy's kitchen shooting the shit. Your gods are boring, Kathy of New Jersey. Teresa showed up real late, because that's all Teresa ever does, show up late to places, so the food was cold and everyone was grumbly. But none so grumbly as Teresa, who complained to us that when she thinks of "goddess party" she thinks "goddess guys" handing out food, because OK I guess 1) Teresa spends a lot of time thinking about goddess parties and B) "goddess guys" is a thing, I mean the Greeks were awfully wacky with all their teen boy fucking and all that, I'm sure there was some gender-bendy stuff going on, I mean look at friggin' Artemis! Teresa then further grumbled to Melissa because Melissa said something that Teresa decided to be offended about and then she spit out some food and kindly said "Ew, what is this???" because it had parsley in it. She then gave us a long explanation about parsley, saying parsley doesn't go in Italian salads (there aren't really Italian salads, but whatever), it goes in their sauces. Right. Whatever, Teets. She was just trying to explain away how rude she was at the party with some sort of thoughtful food criticism, but she knows nothing about anything, so she just made up a thing about parsley. Man oh man has Teresa gotten shitty this season.
To diffuse the awkward tension, Kathy had bellydancers come out and do a bellydance, which was again confusing because you don't really associate goddesses, at least in the Grecian flowy-clothinged way the Housewives were styled, with bellydancing cultures? But OK, whatever. Teresa, of course, scowled and said "What, this is supposed to turn me on or something?" TERESA, STOP IT. JUST FUCKING STOP IT. If she picked on everything with a witty bon mot or whatever, fine. But hearing a festeringly dumb person whine on and on and on with inane, senseless criticisms is one of the more annoying things in this world. JUST SHUT UP, TERESA. Shut up forever.
That was the most annoying part of the stupid goddess party. The saddest part of the stupid goddess party was when Kathy's daughter came in to hang out for a bit before going back to study. On a Friday night. Study! Jacqueline, of course reeling from her fight with ol' jerko back home, got sort of ha-ha-ingly depressed by how well-behaved Kathy's daughter is. She made jokes like "Wow, I feel like I'm at the Cleavers!" but there was a deep, lost, forlorn look of sadness glowing coolly in her eyes. Poor Jacqueline. She just wants to enjoy her daughter. Of course Kathy smiled small, secret, smug smiles about this and, probably, played up just how good her daughter is. These women never miss a chance to compete, that's for sure!
Bouffant meanwhile went to her cousin Lauren's house and once again had done nothing for the big T-shirt design thing that Lauren had asked her to do, because again Bouffant is completely useless. Lauren put her head in her hands and told Bouffant that she was mostly just feeling sorry for herself and mostly just being a gross brat, which is all true, so very very true, but Bouffant didn't listen, couldn't listen, because her ears are clogged with mayonnaise and chewing gum, and that was that.
Just after the big fight in which the lump was kicked out, at the very end of the episode, Jacqueline sat by the hearth reading a book to her two boys. The book was apparently about volcanoes, because the last thing we heard Jacqueline say was, poetically, well done Bravo, "Magma. Imagine that?" Imagine that! Magma. Something solid made liquid and dangerous by heat, by pressure and time. Imagine that! Imagine elements changing, imagine forms exploding and reforming. Imagine clash and gush and rumble and roar and hiss and bellow and spit. Imagine all that! I don't know that you need to imagine it, poor Jacqueline. I think you know it. I think you know that mountain's hot core more than you think you do. I think you've burrowed down into the center of that inferno. I think you are trying to find a way to plug the gap, to cool the earth, to say no to this raw and ragged explosion. Magma! Imagine that!
And imagine something else! Imagine stone, too! Imagine it consistent, picture it solid, wish it whole and together again, the way a rock is supposed to be.