Soon: Chapter 13: Awards and Women
I didn’t complete Chapter 13 before the Chapters 1-13 poll, but that’s okay because Paul has no more interaction with Jae until after the conversion.
It’s time for Paul’s award, and he offers to try to get Straight a ticket to the ceremony, but Straight declines. So, Paul had two plane tickets but only one award ceremony ticket? What, did the NPO expect Jae to wait at the hotel on the most important day of her husband’s career? They must think as little of Jae as Paul does.
I kid, I kid. It is implied that the second ticket goes to Ranold, even though you would think he would get his own ticket in the first place. For someone so obsessedwith logistics, Jenkins really drops the ball on obsessing about award ceremony seating, here.
Anyway, Ranold sits next to Paul and is all proud and puffy and Paul reconcludes again that Ranold must actually be proud of him for realsies, and thus never planted the come-to-Jesus note. This makes, what, 17 conspiracy theories that Paul has been forced to relinquish as completely stupid?
Paul receives the Pergamum Medal “for valor in the face of danger.”
The Pergamum Medal.
OH COME ON, JENKINS, DOES IT NEVER CROSS YOUR MIND EVEN ONCE THAT THESE THINGS MIGHT BE A LITTLE TOO ON THE NOSE JUST A LITTLE TOO OFTEN I MEAN SERIOUSLY WTF?
Yeah, cause I am so sure the National Peace Organization of Atheistopia would name a medal for valor after the city in the Bible where Satan lives:
To the angel of the church of Pergamum write: These are the words of him who has the sharp, double-edged sword. I know where you live–where Satan has his throne. Yet you remain true to my name. You did not renounce your faith in me, even in the days of Antipas, my faithful witness, who was put to death in your city–where Satan lives.
So after receiving the frakkin’ Pergamum Medal (I am never going to get over that. Never.), Ranold takes Paul to the White House Rose Garden to meet Bia Balaam, the be-yotch who “masterminded” the death of The Dork Too Stupid back in the Prologue.
Oh. Wow. Balaam is also mentioned in that same section of Revelation:
Nevertheless, I have a few things against you. You have people there who hold to the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to entice the Israelites to sin by eating food sacrificed to idols and by committing sexual immorality.
Gee. Isn’t. It. Amazing. How. It. All. Ties. Together.
And I bet you all thought that just because Paul had left Jae behind in Chicago, he also left behind his hatred of all females on the planet. WELL, YOU WOULD BE WRONG!
And Bia Balaam is that most frightening of creatures: A woman with a career!!! RUUUUNNNNNN!!!!!
A large bony hand gripped his. Paul was astonished when the voice was a woman’s. Her warm breath hit him full in the face, so she had to be at least his height.
Being tall, you see, is only good if you are of the man-type.
Bia is very nice and congratulates Paul on his award and the three of them talk shop, but Paul is distracted by his complete revulsion at all things Woman:
Paul hated her voice. Am I threatened that she’s a woman? jealous that she’s working when I can’t? envious that she’s Ranold’s protege? No, it was her smug self-satisfaction that got under Paul’s skin.
Remember, only Paul is allowed to be smugly self-satisfied and still be a Hero.
I think maybe Jenkins isn’t reading the mind of his character all that well. Let me see if I can help:
Am I threatened that she’s a woman?
DEFINITELY. Threatened, terrified, disgusted. All of the above.
jealous that she’s working when I can’t?
Well, yes, but this also goes back to the Threatened By Women thing. Because I notice that although you are immensely threatened by and jealous of Bia, you do not have those feelings about Koontz.
envious that she’s Ranold’s protege?
Probably some. But that takes a backseat to your deep psychosis about women. Your father-in-law complex is the least of your worries.
And the really weird thing about this whole passage is that there is a very good reason why almost-a-Christian Paul should hate Bia: she killed The Dork! Granted, they do not say so in so many words, but Bia is clearly the brains and the brawn behind all anti-Christian activities in Washington, D.C. Of course, Paul would need his five-year-old son to help him add 2 + 2, so I guess it’s natural that this idea would sail miles over his head.
Ranold and Bia also tell him about a guy who snuck into the Asclepian Zoo after hours “on some kind of drug trip,” and was killed by a snake.
Oh. Good. God.
Isn’t that clever? ISN’T IT???