The diary of Bridget Jones

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Tues 14 March

9st (again: what is the point?), alcohol units 4, cigarettes 17, calories 2,994 (but mainly fruit)

Hmmm. Can it really be, I was wondering, that love is nothing but see- saw? When one is up the other is down, when one backs off, the other runs after. Next thing I find is that international politics are just as bad, with the Prime Minister of Britain trying to do see-saws with the President of the United States by not speaking to him. I mean, for heaven's sake, it's the sort of thing I'd do.

I spent the weekend struggling to remain disdainfully buoyant after walking out on Daniel Cleaver's charming offer to shag me a few times but not have a relationship. I kept saying the words "Self-respect" and "Huh" over and over till I was dizzy, trying to barrage out "But I luuurve him." Smoking was v. bad. Apparently there is a character in the new Martin Amis novel who is so crazily addicted that he starts wanting a cigarette even when he is smoking one. That is me. It was good ringing up Sharon to boast about being Mrs Iron Knickers, but Tom saw straight through it and said, "Oh, my poor darling," which made me go silent trying not to burst into self-pitying tears at the marvellous new image of myself as wounded nun. "You watch," warned Tom. "He'll be gagging for it now. Gagging."

"No he won't," I said sadly. But on Tuesday in the office, every time I looked in Daniel's direction he was staring at me, as if he'd just really seen me for the first time.

At 3.45pm MESSAGE PENDING flashed up on the screen.

FRIGID COW.

CLEAVE

I laughed, I couldn't help it, and then I looked across and he was smiling at me in a relieved and fond sort of way. So of course we are back on the computer messaging now, but I am being very reserved.

I made a complete arse of myself at the end of today, though. I got in the lift to go home and found Daniel in there with Simon from marketing talking about the footballers being arrested for allegedly throwing matches. "Have you heard about this, Bridget?" said Daniel. "Oh yes," I lied, flailing for an opinion. "Actually, I think it's all rather petty. I know it's a thuggish way to behave, but as long as they didn't actually set light to anyone, I don't see what all the fuss is about." Simon looked at me as if I was mad and Daniel stared for a moment and then burst out laughing. He just laughed and laughed till he and Simon got out, then turned back and said, "Marry me," as the doors closed between us. Hmmm.

Sun 19 March

9st, alcohol units 0 (fat chance), cigarettes 0 all day then 7 in last hour, calories 5 million

Huge, lard smeared, Sunday lunch at my parents'. My mother has decided the vicar is gay and was ranting on hideously about homosexuality being a form of laziness. "They just can't be bothered to relate to the opposite sex. Look at your Tom," she said. "If that boy had anything about him he'd be going out with you properly instead of all this ridiculous `friends' nonsense." "Mother," I said, "Tom has known he was a homosexual since he was 10." "Oh, you know, men get these silly ideas but you can always talk them out of it." "Does that mean if I talked to you really persuasively you'd leave Dad and start an affair with Auntie Jean?" "Now you're just being silly, darling." "Exactly," Dad joined in. "Auntie Jean looks like a kettle." Sometimes I think I am a changeling child.

Mon 20 March

9st 5 (wish to murder Mother), alcohol units 9, cigarettes 10, calories 700 (but too late)

8.30am. Wake up to hear Nelson Mandela on the Today programme claiming he doesn't think about Winnie any more. Even the wisest man in the world is trying to pretend he doesn't care. John finally called Bill but his moody week of silence hasn't got him very far. "We do have a warm and special relationship with the Prime Minister," says the White House. Huh. "Special" these days means precisely the opposite. If you get a birthday card saying "to Someone very Special", it means they couldn't be bothered to get you a nice card. Major's therapist should tell him to forget the whole thing with America. It's like someone who used to go out with Kate Moss at school imagining she still wants to go out with him, even though she's a supermodel now. One thing I have learnt from Major's see-sawing is that there is nothing to be gained from being unattractively churlish. Instead of being "businesslike and thorough" with Clinton, he should have been irresistibly charming and flirtatious but quietly started going out with Japan instead.

8pm. Oh no. Computer messaging today somehow whipped itself up to fever pitch. At 6 o'clock I resolutely put my coat on and left, only to meet Daniel getting into my lift on the floor below. There we were, just he and I caught in a massive electrical charge field, pulled together irresistibly, like a pair of magnets. Then suddenly the lift stopped again and we broke apart, panting as Simon from marketing got in wearing a hideous beige raincoat over his fat frame. "Bridget," he said, smirkily, as I involuntarily straightened my coat. "You look as if you've been caught throwing matches."

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