In which my ineptitude is your gain

And, perhaps, The Bloggess's. As in, the lovely and talented Jenny Lawson, author of the memoir Let’s Pretend This Never Happened, which I found so nice I bought it twice!

Or, rather, like a dolt I forgot that I had already added the book to my cart and then I added it again later on and then I clicked “buy.” And you would think that the nice people at might want to alert people to the fact that they have two copies of the very same book in their carts, just a nice little pop-up window that says “Are you sure…?”, but on the other hand, you’d think that maybe they wouldn’t want to do so, so as to profit from our ineptitude. (Solution: buy stock in

I do stuff like this not so, so frequently. But filling in blanks on online applications does make me slightly nervous — one too many times walking up to the train departure counter or the airline check-in with a ticket for THE WRONG DAY has left me slightly suspicious of my own abilities. Fortunately, the last time this happened on an airline was during the pre-9/11 era, and they still let me on the plane. Probably they figured I was too stupid to do any real damage. (Today, though, I will say that I managed to book an airplane ticket for the correct date AND time. I know this because I cross checked several calendars and e-mail messages a few half-dozen times just to make sure. I even resisted yelling to Rachel, who was upstairs, to come down and check that I had everything right before I pressed “confirm.” Because I knew in my heart of hearts I had it down pat.) (And now God is going to punish me.) (More about said travel plans soon.)

But really, if anyone should have to profit from my ineptitude, I’m happy that it’s Lawson. And if books were like — I don’t know — cookies, or kittens or underwear or anything else where it made sense to have two of the exact same thing, then I would totally keep both copies because they are, individually and collectively, hilarious. Which may be why the book landed at the #1 NYT BestSeller spot its first week out. (Just above the also awesome Rachel Maddow, by the way.) The NYT one-sentence blurb is simply “A blogger recalls her unusual upbringing,” which is just about the driest understatement of the century. I especially enjoyed the chapter in which she recalls her career in human resources and all the whacked people she had to deal with, like the constant stream of men photocopying their junk, or the woman “who had misspelled or left blank almost all of her application”:

She came in again yesterday with almost the exact same application, but with a different name. I turned her down again. Today she came in again and turned in another application with another new name. I asked her whether she was the girl with the first name. She said that was her sister. I told her that I couldn’t hire her unless her name matched the name on her Social Security card, and she asked for the application she’d just given me, and changed the name back to the original one. I turned her down again and pointed out that everyone lies on applications but not usually about their names. When she left she said, “Okay. See you tomorrow.” I’m pretty sure she’s not being sarcastic.

The part about Harry Potter’s vagina is also highly amusing.

So. I’m going to give the book to you, dear readers. I will pack it all back up in the same box it came in and send it to you rather than back to the online retailer from whence it came. Because that would make me — and hopefully you — much happier. If you’d like a chance to win, simply leave a comment below. If you’d like a chance to win and also make me feel better, tell me about some particularly inept thing you’ve done. Or just write “I want it.” you can also enter by becoming a new Facebook "friend" of this blog (up there, to the right. Your right.). I’ll randomly select the winning name next week, say after midnight on June 26. Bonne chance!