Wednesday, July 16, 2014

BSC #53: Kristy for President

By Ann M. Martin, ghostwritten by Nola Thacker. Published April 1992.

Kristy’s day starts out with an assembly, which is interrupted by a fire drill. That seems poorly timed, but ok. Then at lunch is a disgusting meatloaf, which Kristy makes her usual gross comments about. Stacey suggests Kristy run for class president in the upcoming elections, and maybe get the food changed. Because Kristy needs more power.

Kristy has two jobs on Saturday. First for her brothers and sisters. Then for the Newtons. Jamie is all excited about getting a bike soon. That’s pretty much all that happens. That night, Stacey calls to harass Kristy some more about running for president, adding that Grace Blume, one of Cokie’s minions, is running. Kristy says she’ll think about it.

At the BSC meeting, the girls start randomly bitching about the upcoming class play, saying Mary Poppins is babyish. No comment from Stacey, whose favorite movie is Mary Poppins. And I don’t think it’s anymore babyish than Peter Pan, which they’re all about doing later in the series. Anyway, Kristy thinks they should do something more challenging, like The Glass Menagerie or A Raisin in the Sun. Kristy, you just got done telling us how the people of Stoneybrook gave Jessi’s family a hard time, And aren’t there only like, six African-American kids at SMS? The others tell her this sounds like a candidate’s speech, and so she decides right then and there to run. Mallory also gets in on it, saying she’s thinking of running for sixth grade secretary. Good for you, Mal.

Kristy sits for the Newtons again, and Jamie’s bike gets delivered. They have to put the training wheels on, but Kristy’s got that covered. She thinks she should maybe take mechanics or something, she was so good at it. Kristy, it’s not really that hard, get over yourself. Then it’s time for Jamie to ride. Ok, parents, help me out here. Isn’t your kid riding a bike for the first time kind of a big deal? Wouldn’t you want to be there for that, instead of just the baby-sitter? Seems weird to me. Claudia comes by, and they help Jamie along. He’s not so great at it; they go about two steps and stop. While doing so, Claudia tells Kristy about some ideas she’s come up with for her campaign. Kristy likes them so much she asks Claud to be her campaign manager. Just don’t ask her to spell anything, Kristy. And Mal has indeed decided to run, with Jessi as her manager.

The older girls have an after BSC meeting campaign meeting/party. Even Janine is impressed with what Claudia has come up with, so Kristy knows it must be good. Besides Grace Blume, Alan Grey and Pete Black are also running. Kristy thinks she better win, to save the eighth grade. Maybe a touch dramatic, there, Kristy.

Mary Anne sits for Jamie, who hasn’t progressed on his bike. Ok, I understand Jamie is scared of falling and is stubborn and all, but really, he’s being downright rude. If Jenny spoke to the girls the way Jamie is, they’d be all over her case for being a brat. But Jamie is a favorite, so it’s fine.

There’s a meeting for all the candidates, where they learn about Campaign Day, where they’ll each have a booth in the cafeteria for two hours. They’ll also be having a couple of debates. Mal kinda freaks out about this, but Kristy tells her she’ll do fine.

Kristy is sort of falling behind in her homework. She has every intention of getting some done when she sits for the Kormans, but isn’t able to. I can’t believe perfect sitter Kristy would even think about having her attention on anything other than the kids.

Campaign Day doesn’t go so well for Kristy. She has a great sounding booth, but it’s not fun. Alan covered himself in balloons, and whenever someone puts on one of his buttons, they get to pop a balloon. And Grace has a video camera and monitor, and is talking with other students. Later, Grace tries to intimidate Kristy, but Kristy just calls her a loser.

That night, Kristy has so much homework and studying to do, she actually cancels a Krushers practice. Oh noes!

Dawn sits for the Newtons, so of course that means more bike riding. This time however, Jamie has had his dad take off his training wheels. He is so not ready for this, though. He finally ends up falling, and scraping himself up. At first he says he’s never going to ride it again, but soon changes his mind.

Kristy actually fails a science test. But her teacher is really nice, and gives her the opportunity to re-take it the next day during lunch. So Kristy is set to study all afternoon and evening, but when she gets home, David Michael reminds her the rescheduled Krushers practice is that day. So she doesn’t get to start studying until after dinner, but just as she begins, Claudia calls, and asks her if she’s done writing her speech. The first debate is tomorrow. Oh shit. No, Kristy hasn’t even started it. So she decides to write it, and get up early the next day to study.

So she gets her speech written, and goes to bed. But she wakes up in the middle of the night, and she can’t get back to sleep. So she uses the time to study for the test. She’s exhausted the next day, but has to go to the debate first thing. It goes pretty well. Grace promises more fun stuff, like dances. Good lord, you people already have more dances than any school I’ve ever heard of. Alan has everyone stand up, then sit down, and uses that as an example of what a good leader he is. And that’s all he says. Pete actually has a really good speech, even agreeing with some of the things Kristy wants to do.

Then Kristy has her test do-over at lunch. And she fails, getting an even worse grade than before. Ouch.

Claudia sits for Jamie and Lucy (for God’s sakes, Mrs. Newton, are you ever home?) and there’s more damn bike riding. Jamie isn’t any better, though. A bunch of older boys come up on their bikes and watch Jamie. They ask him what happened to his training wheels, and tell him he’s trying to do too much too quickly. One boy offers to help him learn if he gets the training wheels put back on. They’re really nice, and Jamie is totes excited about this prospect.

Kristy’s teacher calls her mother to tell her about Kristy’s grade. Her homework will be monitored from now on. And Kristy herself decides to pull back on baby-sitting, only doing so when it’s absolutely necessary. But she realizes she still doesn’t have enough time for everything.

The night before the big debate, Kristy reaches a decision. She’s going to drop out of the race. She worries about what her friends are going to say, but she knows it’s the right decision. She’s able to sleep easily after that.

The next day, she acts as though everything is normal. But when she gets up to make her opening statement, she instead announces her decision to drop out. The other BSC girls aren’t even mad, even though they’ve put in a lot of work on the campaign.

But y’all, guess what? Mallory freaking wins for sixth grade secretary! Yay, Mal! I’m so proud of you.


  1. Malliry's being secretary comes up in other books, too. Yay, Mallory!

    1. Yes it does! I really appreciate that bit of continuity.