Excerpt from Bridget Jones's Diary by Helen Fielding, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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Bridget Jones's Diary

A Novel

by Helen Fielding

Bridget Jones's Diary
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  • First Published:
    May 1998, 271 pages
    May 1999, 267 pages

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Print Excerpt

Message Cleave
Skirt is demonstrably neither sick nor abscent. Appalled by management's blatently sizist attitude to skirt. Considering appeal to industrial tribunal, tabloids, etc.

Oh dear. This was return message.

Message Jones
Absent, Jones, not abscent. Blatantly, not blatently. Please attempt to acquire at least perfunctory grasp of spelling. Though by no means trying to suggest language fixed rather than constantly adapting, fluctuating tool of communication (cf Hoenigswald) computer spell check might help.

Was just feeling crestfallen when Daniel walked past with Simon from Marketing and shot a very sexy look at my skirt with one eyebrow raised. Love the lovely computer messaging. Must work on spelling, though. After all, have degree in English.

Friday 6 January

5:45 p.m. Could not be more joyous. Computer messaging re. presence or otherwise of skirt continued obsessively all afternoon. Cannot imagine respected boss did stroke of work. Weird scenario with Perpetua (penultimate boss), since knew I was messaging and v. angry, but fact that was messaging ultimate boss gave self conflicting feelings of loyalty--distinctly unlevel playing field where anyone with ounce of sense would say ultimate boss should hold sway.

Last message read:

Message Jones
Wish to send bouquet to ailing skirt over weekend. Please supply home contact no asap as cannot, for obvious reasons, rely on given spelling of "Jones" to search in file.

Yesssss! Yessssss! Daniel Cleaver wants my phone no. Am marvelous. Am irresistible Sex Goddess. Hurrah!

Sunday 8 January

128 lbs. (v. bloody g. but what is point?), alcohol units 2 (excellent), cigarettes 7, calories 3100 (poor).

2 p.m. Oh God, why am I so unattractive? Cannot believe I convinced myself I was keeping the entire weekend free to work when in fact I was on permanent date-with-Daniel standby. Hideous, wasted two days glaring psychopathically at the phone, and eating things. Why hasn't he rung? Why? What's wrong with me? Why ask for my phone number if he wasn't going to ring, and if he was going to ring surely he would do it over the weekend? Must center myself more. Will ask Jude about appropriate self-help book, possible Eastern-religion-based.

8 p.m. Phone call alert, which turned out to be just Tom, asking if there was any telephonic progress. Tom, who has taken, unflatteringly, to calling himself a hag-fag, has been sweetly supportive about the Daniel crisis. Tom has a theory that homosexuals and single women in their thirties have natural bonding: both being accustomed to disappointing their parents and being treated as freaks by society. He indulged me while I obsessed to him about my unattractiveness crisis--precipitated, as I told him, first by bloody Mark Darcy then by bloody Daniel at which point he said, I must say not particularly helpfully, "Mark Darcy? But isn't he that famous lawyer--the human-rights guy?"

Hmmm. Well, anyway. What about my human right not to have to wander round with fearsome unattractiveness hangup?

From Bridget Jones's Diary, by Helen Fielding. © 1997 by Helen Fielding. Used by permission of the Viking Press.

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