In the previous post, written an hour before this one, I wrote the following:
"As I have previously mentioned, my wife and I have been working our way steadily through the first four seasons of The Mentalist on DVD (we are 1/4 through the fourth season right now), and the kind of description JA provides in the above quoted passage is exactly the sort of snap judgment that Patrick Jane (I wonder about that last name!) routinely renders on the show, when he, like Sherlock Holmes, delivers a capsule description of many characters he encounters, including within his descriptions descriptions of facial features and expressions in exactly that same way!
Now, I believe JA was a kind of mentalist, meaning an extraordinarily acute observer and analyst of human character and personality, and so when she gives these descriptions, I believe she is painting, in a few words, an accurate portrait of these people. I trust JA's judgment.
So I don't see her as sour, I see her as relentlessly honest when she could safely afford to be, as she could in Letter 92.
I just read ahead to Letter 93 by mistake, and I found there a perfect example of JA's integrity and willingness to adapt her judgments on other people, as additional evidence came in. Just like Patrick Jane the Mentalist. " END QUOTE
I then raced to the family room to join my wife in watching the latest episode of The Mentalist (now well into season 5). And so, imagine my astonishment and delight when, approximately 15 minutes into the episode, in a scene in which Patrick Jane and Agent Cho are interviewing a suspect in the case of a murder at an exclusive drug rehab facility in the Bay Area, and we hear the following dialog, or something very close to it (by my memory):
PJ: "Miss ____, we're from the CBI, this is agent Cho and I'm Patrick Jane."
Suspect: "Is that Jayne as in Mansfield, or Jane as in Austen?"
Then, about 15 minutes later, Patrick Jane is explaining to that suspect that he knows she is not the murderer, and also tells her that he has deduced that she is an undercover reporter on assignment to dig up dirt on celebrity patients at the rehab center. She asks him how he knew, and he says:
"When I told you my name, you asked me to spell it, that was the reporter in you showing your true calling."
So...I don't need to be a mentalist to deduce from the above that the writer of this particular episode of the show was certainly a Janeite, and also a reader of Laurie Viera Rigler's Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict (both because of all the characters in the episode who are addicts, and also because the protagonist of Laurie's novel is named.....Jane (with no "Y") Mansfield, which is a kind of pun alluding both to Mansfield Park and also to the actress who died tragically named Jayne (with a "Y") Mansfield.
All very cool injokes, but also confirming my sense that it is not an accident after all that the Mentalist is named Patrick Jane, and also that one of the bosses in the CBI during a couple of seasons of the show just happens to have the surname Bertram.
So, I say first, "she's everywhere", and second "thank you, universe".
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