Wednesday, May 28, 2014

BSC SS #5: California Girls! Part One

By Ann M. Martin. Published December 1990.

So, who’s ready for a BSC palate cleanser after all that Dollanganger mess? Me, too.

Ok, so apparently, our Claudia has a minor gambling problem, and has been giving her dad money to buy her a lottery ticket each week for like, forever. And the other BSC girls make fun of her for it. Until it gets up to 23 million, that is. Then they all pitch in money, say they’ll divide it amongst themselves if they win, and have a sleepover to watch the results. Well, they don’t get the big money. But Dawn has every number but one, which gets them ten thousand, or $1,428.57 each. No mention of taxes being taken out or anything.

And so, because they have one of their oh-so-many two-week vacations coming up, and Mr. Schafer is an extremely patient man, the girls decide to fly out to California and stay with Dawn’s dad and Jeff. Yay!

On the plane ride there, the girls talk about everything they want to do. Dawn makes Jessi feel dumb for wanting to go to the San Diego Zoo; it’s too far away from Dawn’s house.

When they get to the house, Dawn gets pissed because her dad’s girlfriend, Carol, is there, cooking them dinner. That bitch.

Their first full day there, they decide to just take it easy and hang out. Then Sunny calls, and invites the BSC over to meet the We Kids Club. Kristy is all about getting competitive before they even arrive. And then she is simply aghast at how their club is run. No set days or times for meetings, clients can call any one of them, and they can take whatever jobs they want. The horror! Although honestly, it is kind of confusing as to why they even have a club at all. But whatever. It’s California Casual!

They actually get some calls during their visit, and BSC girls get the jobs. Of course, because what’s a vacation without some baby-sitting? Mary Anne is going to sit for Stephie, who is a lot like her, shy, dead mom, and being raised by her dad. But Stephie also has asthma. And then Kristy takes a job for Erick and Ryan, who are apparently holy terrors, but Kristy has to prove she’s the best sitter ever.

The next day, that bitch Carol shows up to drive them anywhere they want to go. How dare she? They decide on the beach. Stacey takes a surfing class, and falls in love with it. Dawn introduces her to some older surfer kids she knows. Claudia totally eyes a cute boy reading, and then Carol suggests she invite him over for lunch. His name is Terry, and he’s totally smart. That intimidates Claudia a little, but she still spends the rest of the day with him. Mallory bitches and moans about not being a perfect blond California girl.

Stacey goes to the beach again the next day, this time with her new friends. She has a great time surfing again, even if she does try to ride waves that are too big for her. She doesn’t care, though, she feels like a badass. Then she sees Terry again, and gives him Claudia’s number at the Schafer’s.

And he does indeed call, and Claudia is fucking furious with Stacey. She thinks he’s too smart for her, and they had run out of stuff to talk about. But he asks her out on a date for the next day. They go to an Italian restaurant, and then to an Italian movie. Poor Claud can’t read the subtitles fast enough, and has no idea what’s going on. She acts like she does, though. She tells Carol about how badly it went, and Carol starts to say that she knows some people change for others, but – and Dawn cuts her off, saying that’s stupid. But Claudia thinks it’s a great idea.

Mary Anne sits for Stephie, and she truly is a mini Mary Anne, right down to the pigtails and baby themed room. Mary Anne tells her about how her life used to be, and they totally bond. Stephie suggest they ride bikes or go roller skating, but Mary Anne freaks the fuck out about her having an asthma attack, to they just have a picnic at the park and spend the rest of the afternoon reading.

Carol takes Mallory, Dawn, Kristy, and Jeff to a really huge mall. They go ice-skating and eat lunch, and then Mallory ditches them to go to the makeup counters, and gets a total makeover. She buys a shit ton of makeup, plus a box washout of hair dye. She has $6.28 left for the entire vacation. Mallory. Honestly. And then she dyes her hair blond that night. Jessi is pissed at her, but she’s all, Whatever, bitches, I’m a California girl now!

Jessi spends the day with Derek Masters on the set of his TV show. She gets to watch everything, and it’s pretty interesting. But things really get good when the director asks for some more people for a crowd scene. Jessi gets chosen, and director says he likes her looks. I assume she looks better than the thirty-year-old hose beast that’s always on her covers. Anyway, Jessi is over the moon, and Derek suggests she try to get on a show or an agent while she’s out there. She likes the idea.

The BSC wants to go to the beach again, but a couple of them have problems. Stacey doesn’t want to go with them; she wants to ride with her new friends. And Dawn doesn’t want to spend the day with Carol. But then Jeff wants to do something else entirely, so Carol just drops the girls off. And Stacey does get to ride with her friends, even though there’s a new driver that Dawn doesn’t know. His name is Beau, and he’s an insane driver. But the others just laugh about it, so Stacey does, too. Later at the beach, the girls watch Stacey try to ride a wave, and she practically drowns. They’re worried about her.

The BSC and We Kids club have a sleepover, and pretty much rehash everything we’ve just read. Then Dawn has a realization. Her dad is planning on taking them all to Universal Studios on Saturday, the same day Kristy’s scheduled to baby-sit Erick and Ryan. She’s like, big whoop, we’ll take them, too. Sunny thinks she’s fucking crazy, though, and tries to warn her off it. But Kristy is damn stubborn, of course. And then Mary Anne wants to invite Stephie, too.

Claudia has another date lined up with Terry. She’s freaking out about it. Poor Claudia really has such low self-esteem sometimes. Dawn tells her to just be herself, but then lends her a Laura Ashley dress. Yeah, that’s so her, Dawn. They go to a French restaurant, because, of course that’s what thirteen-year-olds do. Even Claudia snarks on the fact that there’s about thirty years difference between them and the other diners. The menu is all in French, so Claudia just points to something, and it ends up being escargots. She tries to make conversation about the Soviet Union, but what really worries Terry is the greenhouse effect. Claudia wonders what the hell is wrong with greenhouses. Then their food arrives, and Claudia has to down a whole plate of snails. It is not her proudest moment. She cries on the way home, but Terry doesn’t notice.

Part Two tomorrow!

o   I love how Richard makes Mary Anne be very careful and save half of her measly baby-sitting money, but $1400? Sure, no problem, blow it away!

o   Mallory doesn’t know who Alfred Hitchcock is. You’d think that would be old school enough that Ann would have the girls be huge fans or something.

o   This is where Dawn’s vegetarian rules get fuzzy. She asks for chicken on the plane, instead of spaghetti.

o   Dawn keeps going on about how old Carol is, how her car is too young for her, saying “you guys”, blah, blah, blah. Carol is 32. STFU, Dawn.

o   There’s a random subplot about who is the bigger Grateful Dead fan, Jeff or his friend Rob. It’s strange.

1 comment:

  1. ...doesn't Mallory have dark hair? It is not possible to dye your hair "wash out" blonde if you have dark hair. You have to bleach it to lighten it.