It takes two or three more questions for Ma and Pa and Jessica to all get on the same February 1 page in their mental datebooks, but when they arrive it sends Jessica straight onto another page, this one marked "Golden Globes (Not The Ones In My Bra -- The Other Ones)." She asks if she's going, and Pa says she's singing at the post-party. "Is that after, or before?" she asks, screwing up her face. Pa says it's after, and Jessica frowns. She thinks it's weird that "post" means "after." Helpfully, Ma points out, "Don't think of a fencepost," because she's dumber than one. Jessica assures her that this is not the birthplace of her confusion. Rather, she always thought of it as before because "you post a letter before you send it." Everyone laughs. Jessica protests that you do indeed put postage on a letter before you mail it, and it's clear immediately that she somehow just learned this lesson in the season and a half of quasi-self-sufficience she's had to endure for the sake of the show (and her bank account). "Postage? You're using 'post' as a prefix for '-age'?" Pa says incredulously. These people have no idea what they're even saying. I love watching idiots try to win debates through what they think is rational explanation, but which is really just an exercise in whose point is the least asinine. No one specifically points out that to post a letter is to mail it, and is not a synonym for the act of putting postage on an envelope, but Pa Simpson does tiredly tell her that stamps are called "postage stamps," a name that comes from that most magical of places, the post office. "It does?" Jessica asks, impressed. They all stare at each other for while, minds well and truly blown and puffing on a lovely post-release cigarette during the afterglow.
Jessica asks if she's doing anything Monday; she's not, but her Tuesday is booked. It's her photo shoot. Jessica acts annoyed that she has this commitment, and Pa Simpson gets pissy that she's complaining about the schedule. Then suddenly he's explaining to her that the company's paying for everything from the studio to the photographer, possibly to make her shut her ungrateful mouth. I'm not sure. "He has a missing thumb," Jessica whimpers. "What does that have to do with this?" Pa asks. "I think he's got a good heart," Jessica says, putting on her best "deformity is on the outside, love is on the inside" voice in the hopes of attracting a "The More You Know" spot from NBC. Luckily, the photographer ostensibly still has both of his middle digits, and can engage them accordingly. Pa Simpson can't believe what he's hearing, because if he acts shocked, it means more screen time. "Dad, we're women," Jessica explains. And what? Women have no stomach for physical imperfections? Women are graceless judges of anyone whose digits add up to a number, or fraction thereof, lower than ten? Can she even count to ten? "I have a heart for people who don't have fingers, but I just can't be sexy when..." and here she trails off. Honey, you don't have to imagine him stroking you with his thumbless hand. You just have to space out and pout. That can't be beyond you -- it's what you do in every single scene.