Now, where were we? The title of this one makes the plot fairly obvious. Logan likes Mary Anne. He’s a new boy in town, from the South, and he’s a babysitter! Wow! Even more exclamation-pointy (not a phrase, but not going to stop me from using it) is the fact that Mary Anne likes him at least as much as he likes her!! They go on a sitting job together, but meetings are too awkward, so they invent the position of associate member for him.
Meanwhile, he actually gets Mary Anne to go to a dance, where she hots herself up in an extremely memorable fashion and accidentally tosses a shoe. Then she runs out of her own birthday party and gets a cat. This was one of my absolute favorites as a kid, despite how stupid this brief summary makes it sound.
Let’s get this out of the way. For the longest time, I had a crush on Logan as he’s shown on the cover here. I think a lot of readers did.
Also, Jackie Rodowsky totally looks like a girl…and like he’s got as big of a crush on Logan as Mary Anne does.
Wisdom on boys from MA: “Obviously, with a boy, you can’t talk about bras or cute guys you see on TV.” Honestly, I’d think thirteen year old boys would like hearing about girls’ bras. And you never know…you might find a really good guy friend who likes hearing about cute guys on television. (*cough* Ducky *cough*)
First day of school, and Mary Anne is already bitching about gym class. This must be because Mallory hasn’t joined the club yet. She also complains about smelling like gym all day long because she has it in the morning. A) Better than having it right after lunch, like I did in eighth grade. One girl vomited during wind sprints one day. B) Take a shower, then!
Mary Anne suggests that Claudia and Stacey used to sit with a different group of kids during seventh grade lunch because Kristy is immature and likes to talk about how disgusting the lunches are. Mushroom and cream sauce resembles glue; macaroni and cheese smells like steamed rubber in Turtle Wax. You’d think sitting with a bunch of boys would mean more of that, not less.
That said, the joining of all the older babysitters into one lunch table officially makes this the book where the BSC becomes a clique, who must do everything together, have all the same friends and have all the same opinions.
You’d think Kristy’s mom would get in trouble for doing all the BSC’s copying for them on her work copier…something they acknowledge in an off-hand way by suggesting they should pay her.
Here’s what I always wondered when I was a kid. Did Logan actually do a lot of babysitting back in Louisville, or does he just make that up as an excuse to go sit with the BSC? I mean, he tells stories about sitting, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t just get roped into a few jobs here or there.
How exactly does MA wear hoop earrings? (She’s also wearing earrings on the cover of the book.) Maybe this is before it was decided that she didn’t have pierced ears.
The first appearance of the Ohdners! (Allegedly. Didn’t they show up in an earlier story? I’m going to have to go back and double check…)
Mrs. Rodowsky is named Mariel, and she wants Logan and Mary Anne to call her by her first name.
I’d forgotten about this part, but once I started reading it, I remembered it clear as day. Logan sees a picture on the wall—a piece of artwork Jackie did that his parents framed. It’s a pretty standard kiddy picture of a house. Logan’s like, “We have the same one in my house. I thought it was the original.”
Claudia spelling time! Hav, nise, siting (sitting), Gabie, comuty (community), droped, broght. She also uses bake for back.
I might have mentioned before that, when I read these books as a kid, I’d never seen Star Wars. I totally did not get the name Chewbacca or how appropriate it was for that dog.
I’m not usually much of one for shaggy dog stories, but there’s definitely some humor to Chewy (who got loose from Claudia and ran amok through the neighborhood) stealing traffic cone after traffic cone.
Okay, gang, let’s re-wind. (Sorry. Total Ghostwriter flashback.) Shy, quiet Charlotte Johanssen is seriously suggesting that shy, quiet Mary Anne would like a surprise party? Does she have no empathy?
I’ve always had a hard time believing that Richard, who less than a year ago was a total parenting hard ass, would agree to let Mary Anne go on a date with a boy he’d never met. I even thought that when I was ten….
Oh, heck yes! When I think of BSC fashion, I think of two things. One is the awesome outfit Claudia wore back in #2 that had clocks all over the tights. The second one is Mary Anne’s dance outfit, described in full below. Just say the words “skirt with cities on it” to any BSC fan and they know exactly what you’re talking about.
I also have a hard time believing this one: Kristy says that all the girls should all go to Mary Anne’s to help her get ready for the dance. In the later books, if that has to happen, they let the answering machine get the calls, but this is 1988. Instead (and this is the part I have a hard time with) she pays Janine a couple dollars to answer the phone. A) Kristy is okay with this from a business perspective? B) Stacey is okay with that from a financial perspective? C) Claudia is okay with that from a sisterly perspective? And biggest of all D) Why would Janine agree to that? (I keep typing okay is oaky, which spell check tells me is actually a word.)
Dawn, spending the night at Kristy’s? I’m surprised Kristy actually called Dawn. I know MA was busy, but were Claudia and Stacey busy too? (Sorry, that’s actually kind of mean. But I think this is one of few times that we actually see just these two interacting.)
Okay, anyone here think that they need to explain how the game Memory is played? Does anyone in the universe NOT know how to play Memory? Raise your hand and I’ll stop. (I remember playing TONS of Memory when I was really super young, because it was one game all three of us kids could play together.)
Aww, foreshadowing to #11 and the death of Louie. Legitimately sad.
Logan likes Meatballs. And spends nearly ten minutes explaining the plot of it to Mary Anne. Does he maybe have Asperger’s too? (All the Aspies I know—myself included—can give you way more details on their favorite topics than you’d ever want to know.)
I don’t know why I found this humorous: When Mary Anne tries to convince her dad to let her get a cat, he asks what they would do if they went on vacation. She says, “Get Mallory Pike to come over and feed it?” Now, she could have said Claudia, or been vague and said a neighbor, but she singles Mallory out. Mallory Pike, Cat Sitter.
Dawn ate birthday cake! Shocking! (Of course, she then complains that about the sugar in it.)
Dawn: hot pink shorts, white tank top, island print shirt (MA says it is “snappy”); green and white sweater, stretchy green pants
Mary Anne: bright vest over white blouse; white skirt with city names and sketches of landmarks on it in pink and blue; pink shirt and sweater; white shoes with matching pink and blue
Claudia: tight black pants; white shirt with BEPOP on it; floppy blue bow in her hair
Stacey: white t-shirt, hot pink jumpsuit
Kristy: white turtleneck, pink sweater (Kristy in pink = wrong), jeans
The Ohdners, no names or ages, but they have two girls
Jackie Rodowsky (seven)—33
Logan Bruno (thirteen)—39
The Morgans, no names or ages, but they have four boys
Next week: is going to be like pulling teeth. I don’t think I’ve EVER managed to read the entire book for next week’s story. I may have to break it up in to three chapter segments (instead of my usual five chapter segments) but I will finish #12 Claudia and the New Girl. It will happen.