Chuck Ross at the Daily Caller got an email from a reader pointing out something interesting about one section of UVA dream date / gang rapist / figment of Jackie’s imagination Haven Monahan’s Glitch in The Matrix email. This is the messaged received by Jackie’s crush Ryan/”Randall” five days after Haven Monahan theoretically organized Jackie’s mass violation.
Amusingly, one paragraph was lifted from an old Dawson’s Creek TV episode.
More Googling reveals that much of the email is a pastiche of lines lifted from sentimental websites.
The Glitch email was transcribed yesterday by iSteve commenter Harold. It is structured as a forwarded message from the mysterious Haven Monahan followed by what appear to be Jackie’s musings on the adorability of Ryan.
First, as Chuck points out, this paragraph from the Haven Monahan email reads:
Ryan’s great, actually. I mean he’s smart. He’s sensitive. He’s funny. He’s a scaredy cat. If you creep up behind him, he’ll jump right out of his skin. It’s pretty amusing. He’s honest. He always calls them just like he sees them. You can [???] count[?] on getting the truth from Ryan, even if the truth hurts. He has the most incredible taste in music. He’s like this walking, talking music library. And he understands how truly important music is. He’s stubborn. He has this [???] way about him that can be so frustrating sometimes. And sometimes the things he says hurt. But he’s a really, really good friend. And loyal to a fault. He’s realistic[?] about everything. And I’m a dreamer so I mean, it’s good to have somebody like that in my life. He’s one of my best friends here, you know? He’s more than that… he’s everything.
Parts of that were clearly lifted from:
Dawson’s Creek (7)
from the TV Series created by Kevin Williamson
Here’s James van der Beek’s character describing Katie Holmes’ character:
Dawson: She’s great. I mean, she’s smart, she’s beautiful, she’s funny, she’s a big ol’ scaredy cat. If you creep up from behind her she’ll jump out of her skin. It’s pretty amusing. She’s honest. She always calls them just like she sees them. You can always count on getting the truth from Joey even if the truth hurts. She’s stubborn. We fight a lot. She can be so frustrating sometimes. But she’s a really, really, good friend. I know her to a fault. She believes in me. And I’m a dreamer so it’s so good to have somebody like that in my life. If she goes away, I don’t know what I’m going to do. I mean, she’s my best friend, you know? She’s more than that. She’s everything.
I never saw any episodes of Dawson’s Creek, but I did enjoy James van der Beek’s performance in last year’s cancelled sit-com Apartment 23 where he plays professional celebrity James van der Beek, still cheerfully raking in the girls who loved Dawson’s Creek.
(By the way, Williamson also wrote the Scream films. Yesterday I linked to a the scene in Scream 4 in which a Jackie-lookalike character goes through all the hard work of doing a competent frame-up, including doing a back dive through a low glass table. The moral of Scream 4 is that kids these days don’t want to put in the accomplishment to be real stars, they want to be fake stars by being victims, but being a genuine fake victim star is an immense amount of work. Perhaps that’s a lesson that Jackie and Sabrina Rubin Erdely should have taken more to heart before their slapdash collaboration. Granted, it worked like a charm for a dozen days …)
Beyond the Daily Caller article, I quickly identified three more bits of plagiarism. There’s this part of the Haven Monahan email:
He’s gorgeous, but gorgeous is an understatement. More like you’re startled every time you see him because you notice something new in a Where‘s Waldo sort of way. More like you can‘t stop writing third grade run on sentences becuase you can‘t even remotely begin to describe something, someone, so inherently amazing. More like you’re afraid that if you stare at him too long, you’ll prove your grandparents right that, yes, your face will get stuck that way… but you do‘t mind.
That is adapted from the following paragraph that pops up online in multiple places:
This was an article that appeared in the UMass college newspaper, The Daily Collegian, written by Matt Brochu, dated November 21, 2003.
…. She’s gorgeous, but gorgeous is an understatement. More like you’re startled every time you see her because you notice something new in a “Where’s Waldo” sort of way. More like you can’t stop writing third grade run-on sentences because you can’t remotely begin to describe something . someone . so inherently amazing. But you’re a writer. You can describe anything. That’s what you do: pictures to words, events to words, words to even better words. But nothing seems right. More like you’re afraid that if you stare at her for too long, you’ll prove your parents right: that yes, your face will stick that way. But you wouldn’t mind.
The Haven Monahan email sentence:
Ryan has no idea what he does to me… he can make me feel more emotions in one second than I would normally feel in one year.
Resembles one found on a site called Organized Chaos:
you have no idea what you do to me. you can make me feel more emotions in one second than i would normally feel in one year.
Another sentence in the Haven Monahan email reads:
I mean, if I had the chance of hanging out with anyone in the entire world or just sitting in my dorm with him talking about music and watching a crappy TV show… I‘d choose him everytime…
“If I had the choice of hanging out with anyone in the entire world or sitting at home with you eating_____watching a crappy TV show, I’d choose you every time.”
In summary, this hoax that suckered most of the American news media for two weeks was never a masterpiece of careful planning. It just stumbled upon what our news media already wanted to believe, whatever the evidence.