The Bell Jar or Chick Lit?

One of these images is just as hellacious as the other:

1. The Carnival Triumph “cruise from hell’ that left passengers drifting in the Gulf of Mexico with backed up plumbing and no AC, forced to erect tent villages on the deck:


2. The 50th anniversary cover of Sylvia Plath’s “The Bell Jar.”


You may wonder how these things are connected.  Allow me to elaborate: When I was seventeen, I went on a Carnival Cruise, it was a nightmare—like a floating Denny’s sans good fried breakfast options. While on the cruise, I read “The Bell Jar.”

Yes, that was me, the pale looking girl sitting on a lounge chair curled up with one of the most devastating memoir/fictions of the 20th century.  While I did think it a bit of a downer, it was not nearly as disturbing as the amount of vomit I encountered in public places on the Celebration on a daily basis. In the midst of my own teen angst and “cruise hell,”  I related to Esther’s character in a number of ways and remember thinking “If she were alive today, she would have been okay.” True? Who knows.  What I do know is that if she were alive today, she would be pretty P.O’d at the 50th anniversary cover chosen for her book.

Galley Cat has done a nice job of compiling the best of the parody covers here