Thursday, August 9, 2012

"That's good...because the Abominable Snowman also steals homework." BSC Super Special # 7 Snowbound (1991)

This was always one of my favorite super specials, mostly because, while most of the girls' stories were interesting, they were something that could possibly actually happen. Sure, Stacey's story would have been more interesting if she and her mother had been chopped up by a serial killer. And there's no way Claudia's parents would let her stay ALONE with three children under the age of six when she could just walk across the street and join them. But, I've been stuck in a number of snowstorms where the power and phone and heat were out and we just had to do what we could. So I was a fan of this one.

In case you couldn't tell by the incredibly original title, the BSC is snowed in, in a variety of silly set ups.

Kristy's at home, but she's invited Bart over, and he's forced to spend the night. Meanwhile, Karen's pet rat is on the loose, and Kristy decides she needs to shave her legs for the first time.

Claudia is babysitting for the Perkins sisters and the parents can't make it home. She can't find the crazy dog for a couple of hours, and teaches the girls how to eat dirty snow.

Stacey's mom takes her to get a perm and then decides (for some reason) that it would be easier to take the back roads back to Stoneybrook. They get stranded and taken in by a stranger and his family.

MA and Mallory are babysitting the Pikes for nearly twenty four hours. The concern at this sitting job isn't a missing animal, but that they're nearly out of food. They clean out the freezer of food that will go bad, and then Logan brings them a pack...on cross country skis.

Dawn and her mother barely make it to the airport, and then discover that Jeff (whom they were supposed to pick up) isn't there because his flight was rerouted. They're forced to spend the night, and of course Dawn makes friends with some small children.

Jessi and her sometimes-boyfriend Quint get stranded at Jessi's dance school. Quint had come to town to go to a dance with Jessi. The two of them play surrogate big siblings to a bunch of little homesick dancers.

Interesting tidbits

On the first "real" page that's not handwritten, Kristy tells us that Emily Michelle is adopted, but she doesn't think of her that way. Then why even bring it up?

All seven babysitters are bringing dates to the Winter Wonderland (original name...think it was used in several other December books) dance, and the fourteen of them are going to hang out together. I'll buy that Bart and Quint, who don't go to that school, would be okay with this, and even Ben, who is getting to hang out with a bunch of older guys. But don't Logan and the other dates have their own cliques, and wouldn't they want to spend some time with them?

David Michael (I'm going to start shortening David Michael to DM and Emily Michelle to EM, the way I always type MA. Obviously, Kristy's mom became obsessed with double names somewhere after Kristy's birth) is singing the name game and Kristy's desperate to cut him off before Bart hears him say fart. When DM whispers something really goofy into the phone before hanging up, Bart asks who wound him up. Sounds like a normal 7 year old in December to me.

Emily Jr, Karen's rat, goes missing. I seem to remember getting extremely desperate for a book one day and reading my sister's Little Sister book where that happens as well; I'm pretty sure it warranted a super special. I don't think I realized it was the same plot as this.

Claudia misspellings: descibe (describe), claudy (cloudy), afternon (afternoon), disapperntened (disappointed), patently (patiently) and flury (flurry) She also uses an apostrophe at the END of the word (didnt') and spells Myriah and Gabbie's names wrong TWICE--once as Myria and Gabie and once as Mariah and Gabby.

Claudia describes Dawn as healthy looking. I'm sure she didn't mean it that way, but it sounds like she's calling her chunky. "She has a healthy appetite."

Claudia mentions that Mal and Jessi have "semi-boyfriends." Is that because they're eleven or what? Why is Logan MA's boyfriend but Ben, who always hangs out with Mal at this point in the series and has gone on several dates with her, a semi-boyfriend? On a related note, how old is Quint supposed to be? I always got the idea he was older, like 14. Why would a 14 year old want to "date" an 11 year old?

When Dawn tells Sharon Jeff is nervous about flying, Sharon says he's going through a phase in response to the divorce. That sounds like a lame excuse to not actually deal with the problem. At the very least, shouldn't she blame it on her marriage to Richard, which is more recent and more likely to bother Jeff (seeing as he'll be spending Christmas with Richard.)

When Mrs. Pike details her plans for her day in NYC (which sound more like the plans for a WEEK in NYC...seriously, three museums, Rockefeller Center, Lincoln Center and a musical in one day?), Claire asks if she'll find time to use the bathroom.

Nicky's glasses look really thick in the illustration. And they're those giant plastic 80s frames.

Does Stacey really need to go all the way to the mall to get a perm? There must be a salon somewhere in Stoneybrook.

Every now and then, these girls actually act their age. Stacey mouths off to her mom in the car and jokingly asks her if she can go see Santa.

What time do these girls get out of school, 1:30? How can Kristy do homework and watch two movies with Bart before dinner? Even assuming that those movies are 90 minutes each and dinner at the Brewer/Thomas house is pretty late (say, 7pm), they still would have started the movies at 4pm at the latest. Later, MA and the Pikes don't get home from school until after 3.

Umm. If it's December, Emily should be wearing more than just a diaper (that's hanging open on one side.) Even if the house is set at a warm temperature, she'd still be pretty chilly. (Tessie, my best friend, adds: it's possible that Emily is like her own little sister Bee, who used to rip all her clothes off at that age and didn't mind the cold.)

Bart looks about 10 in the illustration.

Convenient. Jessi said there was food at her dance rehearsal so no one faints. But when exactly were the dancers supposed to eat it...and what kind of snack food is Cup'o'Ramen? (I also find it suspect that not a single parent showed up. There's a fair shot that someone lives within walking distance and would be able to get there anyway.)

I've always remembered the description of Mallory sleeping like an eggbeater and couldn't remember what book it was in.

When Byron asks if he can have a popsicle for breakfast, MA says she didn't know if he should have chocolate ice cream for breakfast. But popsicles are fruit flavored. She's thinking of a fudgesicle. (Side note: Why is it always Byron who wants to eat the grossest combos? Not that a popsicle for breakfast is that bad, but he's usually the one eating fried baloney and banana, or salami and peanut butter or whatever.)

Sharon drives in snow just like my mom does. Only Sharon apparently curses more than my mom does. (Wouldn't it have been awesome if they could have just said what Sharon said? My friends all cursed like sailors by the time we were 13.)

I've always been amused by the way Kristy describes her older brothers. In this one, she says Sam practically lives in the fridge, and that he can sense the presence of ice cream.

Kristy calls DM Toast-for-Brains after he asks if Bart will sleep in her room.

More Claudia misspellings: evry (every), realy exited (really excited), flacks (flakes), Thrusday (Thursday), sleding (sledding), befor (before), and stoped (stopped). She also says billed instead of build and no instead of know. She spells Myriah wrong twice again (including a new spelling, Maria) and Gabbie once, though she does get it right (but not capitalized) the second time.

Claudia heats up spaghetti in a double boiler. I don't even know how to use one of those.

How old is Laura Perkins? She's old enough to hold up her head and eat puree, but is still a baby (she's younger than Lucy). Does she sleep through the night? Claudia puts her to bed and then barely even mentions her again.

I'm always surprised when the pictures in the super specials actually match the descriptions of what is happening. It was not the norm. For example, in the MA chapter, there's an illustration I already mentioned because I was talking about Nicky's glasses. In the story, Nicky makes Claire do a "crumble," so she's in a ball on the floor. Then the triplets all come in and make the bizzer sign at Nicky. In the illustration, Claire is just kneeling at MA's feet with her arms around MA's ankles, while only one of the triplets is making the bizzer sign. However, in the Jessi illustration, she's holding hands with a sad looking little girl, and there's a little boy in line ahead of her. In the story, once the little boy in front of her gets off the phone, the little girl (Holly) won't let go of Jessi's hand while she dials her home phone number.

 Adam frightens Claire with stories of the Abominable Snowman. They're actually kind of clever.

Why does the heat still work at the Pikes' house when the electricity is out?

Sharon says that Dawn has picked up MA's one bad habit, which is worrying too much. But I think that's not even close to MA's worst habit. How about letting everyone walk all over her?

Dawn relates being stuck in the airport to being stranded on an island with Claudia. Idiot.

More illustration silliness. Mallory looks like she's a full head taller than MA, who is about the same height as the triplets.

Claire asks if robbers ring the doorbell and Mallory's not sure. WTF?

After the electricity came back on, Mallory says the only light that should have been "off" is the one in the rec room. I think she means on.

Yet more misspellings: evning (evening), electricy and electricty (electricity), whorst (worst, though I read it as, most whore) and prowd (proud)

Claudia is spending the night in Myriah's room with her, after she put Gabbie to bed in the other room. I don't know about you, but if I were 13 and alone with a three little girls, I'd want to keep them as close together as possible. And I can't imagine Gabbie would be so easy-going about going to sleep alone in the dark without her mommy and daddy. She's two, after all. A lot of kids her age are still in cribs.

Chewy is always described as being a huge dog, so why is Claudia looking for him under the couch or behind a table? And seriously, even with her mother there to help, they never even check the basement.

Jessi says she overhears Quint saying the words "bowling bag" to another one of the "guy dancers." I misread it as "gay dancers."

The coffee shop across the street offers the dancers free breakfast. Unless he lived upstairs from the shop, how did the owner get there? The streets hadn't been plowed yet.

MA tells Logan that Pizza Express isn't open (even though it's only 9 am and there's two feet of snow on the ground). Logan responds all sarcastically.

Heh heh. MA says that the reader will never guess who was at the door, but on the opposite page, there's a picture of a boy on skis. It has to be Logan, since he's the only person they've spoken to on the phone who could have skied over.

Kristy says she rummages around under the sink and happens to find an electric razor. Where did THAT come from? Was it Elizabeth's, and if so, why is it in the kids' bathroom? Or did someone buy it for Kristy in the past and she just filed it away? It would have been funnier if she'd borrowed, say, Charlie's razor to use (as she does with his hair dryer.)

Dawn's so concerned that people will think Sharon's snoring is coming from her, she makes a giant show of how awake she is.

Stacey says her mom called AAA at 1pm, and, after driving slowly home from the mall, they arrived at "nearly two." Ooookay. I've never called AAA on a "good day" (meaning one where there wasn't a snow storm and accidents everywhere) and waited less than half an hour for them. If it normally takes half an hour to get to the mall and Stacey's mom drove slowly, it would probably be 45 minutes to get home, at the very least. My guess would be they probably wouldn't get home until closer to 3 or least.

Final Claudia misspellings: bilt (built), abuot (about), arond (around), rigth (right), kichen (kitchen), shold (should), parnets (parents), grate (great), huged (hugged...she does this right after spelling it correctly), mabe (maybe), beter (better), freind (friend). Most of those are pretty normal, though a few make her look a little dyslexic.

Apparently, if Bart turns his eyelids inside out, it's fun. When Alan Gray does it, it's totally immature.

Next week will probably be #123, Claudia's Big Party. Mostly because it's the only book in my collection I haven't read yet.

1 comment:

  1. So I apologize in advance for the novel that is my comments. I just love "discussing" BSC minutiae.

    The Winter Wonderland Dance was actually originally called the Snowflake Dance (in book 3), though WWD is used most often.

    "Does Stacey really need to go all the way to the mall to get a perm? There must be a salon somewhere in Stoneybrook."
    There is Glorianna's House of Hair, which Stacey does not want to go to. She mentions that if her mom doesn't drive her to Washington Mall on Wednesday, she'll have to settle for going to Glorianna's on Thursday. (You've mentioned reading some of LS books and one of them - I don't know which one - details the horrible haircut Karen received from Glorianna.)

    "How early do they get out of school that Kristy had time to do her homework and watch two movies before dinner?"
    I'm not sure about at this point in the series but in Kristy's Great Idea, they get out of school at 2:42. And as for MA and the Pikes, MA and Mal got out of school in time enough to walk to SES and pick up Claire and the other Pike kids and then walk back to the Pike house. That could easily take up 20 minutes.

    Cup O' Ramen is Cup o' Noodles soup - dehydrated/dried noodles and vegetables and/or meat that you add boiling water to to make soup. Pictured here:'+Ramen&rlz=1C1BLWB_enCA555CA555&espv=210&es_sm=122&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=MPbOUvOkKtGrrgHonIDQDQ&ved=0CDwQsAQ&biw=1600&bih=774. And I also wonder when the dancers were supposed to have eaten the soup/other food. Obviously it came in handy after they were forced to stay over at the dance school but before that, staying after rehearsal wasn't the plan.

    I don't know why the mixed up Popsicle with Fudgesicle here. I'd always assumed that maybe they couldn't get the rights to use the Fudgesicle name but that's weird that they'd be able to use Popsicle but not Fudgesicle. And, even more confusingly, one of the later books (SS10) mentions Jordan eating a Fudgesicle.

    Dawn seems pretty virgin-eared, having only heard the word Sharon said (which I've always assumed to the F word) "in movies that Mom doesn't know I've seen." Especially considering Thomas-Brewer children (and Bart) have just watched Uncle Buck and Back to the Future, both of which contain several swear words.

    I have no idea why you'd even use a double boiler for re-heating spaghetti.

    I'm not sure how old LP is but she was born in #14, Hello, Mallory.

    I think the Jessi illustration still fits: Holly was holding her hand, got on the phone with her parents and continued holding Jessi's hand. Unless the text belies this somehow. It's been a while since I read this book.

    Why does the heat still work at the Pikes, after the electricity goes out?
    Maybe they have gas heating.

    "I think Mallory means on."
    Mallory means that there was one light on after the electricity came back on but it should have been off, considering that everyone went around turning everything electrical that they'd had on before the outage off, but they missed the light.