In the second half of the seventh chapter of Making Money, Adora Belle makes some progress, and Mr. Bent makes a mistake. Intrigued? Then itâ€™s time for Mark to read Discworld.Â
OH NO. Oh no!!! I canâ€™t figure out whatâ€™s going on with the golden golems; I donâ€™t know what information Professor Flead is going to come back with; and I donâ€™t know WHO THE HELL MR. BENT ACTUALLY IS.Â
Time for me to discuss.Â
So, Professor Flead is pretty gross, and Pratchett writes him both as a lecherous old man (the letch/lych wordplay is GREAT) and as someone who has lust for the world of the Umnian golems. It is the only thing that gets him to stop hitting on Adora, after all. And while I feel like Pratchett wrote Flead this way just for the wordplay joke, there are two big things I picked up from this scene. First of all, I really do love how you can feel the pure joy emitting from both Flead and Adora Belle as they talk about this subject. Here are two people who have approached the concept of golems from an anthropological and intellectual standpoint (Flead) and from a liberation standpoint (Adora Belle). Which isnâ€™t to say thereâ€™s not crossover, either. Like, I donâ€™t Flead is interested in golem liberation, but Adora is clearly interested in the history of golems, their thought processes, their society, etc. Anyway, the point being: reading this was a delight, and it made me even more excited to see the golems succeed in making it to Ankh-Morpork. I mean, yes, thatâ€™s also going to be a disaster because:
â€œBut we think they are… unusual golems.â€
â€œGolden, probably,â€ said Flead, the words leaving a thoughtful silence in their wake.Â
Then Adora Belle said: â€œOh.â€
Moist shut his eyes; on the inside of the lids, the gold reserves of Ankh-Morpork walked up and down, gleaming.
Still: that chaos is most likely going to result in something very, veryinteresting, and I want to know what it is.Â
The other big thing: Adora Belle calling out Moist about flirting. SHE IS 100% RIGHT. He flirts with people all the time!!! Itâ€™s literally part of so many of his cons, but until her, he never thought of what he did as flirting. So, of course itâ€™s hypocritical of him to try to come for Adora Belle for flirting with Professor Flead. Heâ€™s the literal only source of the information she needs, so why shouldnâ€™t she make that situation easier on both parties? Itâ€™s insecurity thatâ€™s cropping up here, or at least thatâ€™s my reading of the situation. Moist feels insecure about his relationship with Adora Belle, and Iâ€™m guessing he felt threatened in that scene, even though he didnâ€™t have to be.
There are two things here that I took away, both of which I commented on during the video reading. Thereâ€™s an inherent comedic absurdity in this scenario because… well, mathematical mistakes are so COMMON. Yes, itâ€™s important in the banking industry that these mistakes NOT happen, but is it the end of the world? Well, thatâ€™s the joke. Or at least partially a joke. Mr. Bent is such a perfectionist that the staff around him goes to unreal lengths to insulate Mr. Bent until they no longer can because… the unthinkable happens.Â
But at the same time, I canâ€™t ignore the more toxic element at work here. Have any of yâ€™all had a boss who creates an environment around them where criticism is impossible? Where the potential for a slightest mistake can compel people to feel such terror that the break out into hysterics when a mistake is discovered? Hell, Iâ€™ve experienced this outside of a work scenario, and off the top of my head, I can think of two close relationships Iâ€™ve had where this atmosphere existed. And itâ€™s truly frightening!!! You know something is wrong or has been done wrong, but you cannot bring yourself to even mention it because youâ€™re afraid of the terrible reaction youâ€™ll get. THIS IS NOT A HEALTHY DYNAMIC FOR ANYTHING. A work environment, a romantic relationship, a friendship, none of the above. But then this got me thinking: what if this is how Mr. Bent changes? What if this is the moment where he begins to realize that this whole thing of his is unsustainable? Because I donâ€™t see him winning out and Moist giving up the bank without changing it. Soâ€¦ does Mr. Bent change, or does something worse happen?
So, weâ€™ve now got absolute confirmation that Cribbinsâ€™s goal is to basically get as much money and favor out of Moist for as long as he can, or at least long enough to secure a massive payout. Heâ€™s thinking of his future, and he knows that Moist is probably the quickest and surest route to some sense of security. But how the hell is he going to use Bereniceâ€™s god-of-the-month club to achieve this? What about this club could get him closer to Moist? Or maybe itâ€™s a different kind of strategic positioning? He seemed pleased that Berenice wasnâ€™t using her married name, soâ€¦. something about that?Â
This is a weird subplot, no? Not the fact that Clamp exists or that Moist has recruited him to use for making money, but the whole thing with Igor replacing his brain with a turnip. Itâ€™s one of those things that Iâ€™m hesitant to say much about because I could get the context Iâ€™m missing in the next chapter. THIS HAS HAPPENED SO MANY TIMES AT THIS POINT. But there is this:
â€œThat is an interesting and philosophical point,â€ he said, once again looking at Clampâ€™s happy yet somewhat unfocused expression. â€œBut it seems to me that all those nasty little details were what made him, well, him.â€Â
Yes! And the evidence is there in Clampâ€™s drawings, though part of me wants to see the â€œnursery schoolâ€ version of the bills. PUT GOOGLY EYES ON THEM. Anyway: I assume Igor fetching the wires means that theyâ€™re fixing him, yes? If thatâ€™s the case, how is Clamp going to feel about what was done to him? Or his new name? Or what heâ€™s being asked to do?
WEâ€™RE GONNA FIND OUT THE TRUTH NOW, ARENâ€™T WE. NOOOOOOOO, THIS CHAPTER ENDING IS SO UNFAIR, WHY DO I READ BOOKS LIKE THIS!!!!
Mark Links Stuff
– The paperback edition of my debut, ANGER IS A GIFT, is now up for pre-order! It comes out on May 7, 2019.Â If you’d like to stay up-to-date on all announcements regarding my books, sign up for my newsletter! DO IT.