Monday, September 8, 2014

“Dawn’s got her mind on other things. Like permanent garbage.” BSC #57: Dawn Saves the Planet (1992)

You all owe me big time for even opening this book. You can pay me in alcohol or BSC books; I still need 20 to complete my set.
Okay, before I begin, let’s vlog about Dawn:

So the eighth graders are studying ecology in science class, and Dawn and Stacey decide to create an environmentally friendly class for some of the their sitting charges. The kids get really into it, but Dawn is even worse. She lectures everyone and is totally out of control. She gets the good idea to start a recycling program at SMS, which the students get behind quickly. However, Dawn’s been so annoying that the kids at school don’t want her to head up the program. Eventually, the BSC shows her the error of her ways.
Interesting Tidbits
This book is so bad, I couldn’t even get Scout the cat to attack it. And I tried!
The cover. The girls seem really intent on that ridiculous, pointless poster Dawn’s pointing at, but the boys aren’t paying attention at all.

And Dawn is being annoying right off the bat: She sits down and announces, “I’m going to save the planet.” To make me laugh, Claudia responds, “It’s about time.”
Claudia’s the one making fun of the lunch this time, by calling it “The Green Slime.”
Oh, Dawn’s one of those people: the ones who make lists for everything.
It says that Marnie Barrett “raced” down the steps, but most two year olds aren’t that steady on their feet. Marnie barely speaks, and I’ve always pictured her as being a ‘young’ two, (as compared to Gabbie, who is 2 and ½ and has the language skills of an elementary school students.)
My parents never bought six-packs of soda, but I remember staying at my uncle’s house and trying to plead with him to cut up the six-pack rings so fish didn’t get stuck in them. Sad but true—I think I learned that from this book.
Stacey and Dawn hug in the hallway and a couple of boys look at them and smirk. I think that might be just about the only same sex combo I haven’t seen a fanfic about.
I really wonder sometimes how they decide which kids should be part of each activity. Like, why are all the kids in Kristy’s neighborhood (DM, the Papadakises and the Kormans) invited to an ecology class in Stacey’s backyard while the Arnold twins, who live in her neighborhood, are not?
Also, they invite two Pike kids—Nicky and Vanessa—but not the younger ones. I can see the logic behind this if everyone in the class were around that same age. Most of them are, but then Andrew and Suzi are there too. Why not invite Margo (who is seven, same age as many of the students) and Claire, then?
I wonder what kids who read this book today think. Recycling is such a normal part of many people’s lives these days. Many cities have recycling facilities and many kids just leave their recyclables on their front stoop, next to their garbage. Of course, there are still people who burn all their garbage and others, like my former supervisor, who feel like recycling is a conspiracy and a waste of time.
And now Dawn’s lecturing Claudia on her candy choices because the ‘chocolate drops’ are individually wrapped in plastic.
What kind of school uses Styrofoam cups for their individual servings of food? We always had everything in plastic cups. Of course, Dawn would probably bitch about those, too.
Oh, look, the Ohdners! They have the measles this time.
Dawn’s not paying attention during a BSC meeting, and the title quote is Claudia’s commentary on it.
And now Dawn’s being a jerk to everyone because they’re all not as much of an enviro-Nazi (I’m totally going to patent that term, but you all can use it) as she is. She gripes at Claudia for throwing out a soda can, Mary Anne for not writing on both sides of the paper, etc. She says she sounds like a ‘grumpy old teacher’, but she really sounds like an asshole.
Ha! Both Dawn and Stacey are teaching the class together, but because Stacey hasn’t taken leave of her senses, Mal and Jessi only blame Dawn when the Pikes become mini enviro-Nazis. They call them Green Meanies.
And this part was funny:
            Jessi: Is it alright to give the kids glasses of milk to drink?
            Mal: Sure. Why wouldn’t it be?
            Jessi: I don’t know. Maybe milking cows is bad for the animals.
            Mal: The Green Patrol has really shaken you up, hasn’t it?
            Jessi: I’m afraid to breathe. I might pollute the air.
You know Dawn’s being a bitch when even Mary Anne abandons her. She’s trying to get students to join her recycling effort, but then yells at them when they aren’t environmentally perfect. MA, who was holding Dawn’s sign for her, hands it back and walks away stiffly.
And she keeps it up with someone who doesn’t want to learn anything: Shawna Riverson, she of the genius idea to cheat off Claudia. Shawna actually manages to get a good shot back in at Dawn.
You know what time it is? Claudia spelling time! Wernt, cauht, Charlot, chatered, rilly, lerned. Oh, and did you know that the real name of this book is Dawn Saves the Plant? You should, because that’s how Claudia spelled it.
Trevor and Woody ate paté, brie and sparkling cider at lunch. They brought their own tablecloth, dishes, glasses and flatware. They claim that they did it to piss off the lunch ladies and protest the mystery meat lunches, but it sounds like they were on a date.
Dawn asks Claudia to make the fliers for the Green Fair. Claudia asks Charlotte to help her, which is a good idea. Maybe the fliers will actually be spelled properly.
I love how Claudia keeps cracking jokes about Dawn the enviro-Nazi. Stacey’s ready to bitch-slap Dawn (which is something I’d love to see by this point) because she’s totally taken over their class and keeps criticizing her. MA gets all teary-eyed and then just stalks off on Dawn, as I mentioned above. But Claudia just lets Dawn roll off her back while being a little snarky. MA says Dawn told everyone about the recycling program when they walked in the front door, and Claud replies, “That must be why everyone is using the back entrance.”
So after Dawn is not elected to head the recycling program, she pouts and refused to get involved with it. Because she’s terribly mature.
The SMS band sounds a lot like the band at my middle school. MA says they have to announce the name of the song their going to play, because otherwise no one would ever recognize it.
Oh, the Toilet Monster. How I love thee.
YES! Bill and Melody call their parents out on the hot dog/babysitter conspiracy. I do love that that fact remains (nearly) consistent, with them eating hot dogs in every books except the one where they have fish sticks, and this one, when their complaining gets them pizza for dinner.
Does anyone think that Kristy would actually be grossed out by the idea of squishing bugs? It doesn’t seem to match her tomboy act.
So I’m about twelve chapters into the book and I’m eating nachos as I read. I sat here, getting ready to read on, and thought to myself, “I wish I had some tequila to go with this.” And then I realized I did! So if the tidbits make no sense after this, I apologize. 
Stacey finally gets fed up and calls Dawn on her shit, which starts everyone pointing out that Dawn’s been lecturing and ordering everyone around. Mary Anne points out that Dawn’s been unpleasant; Kristy ups it to obnoxious.
I feel like Dawn’s usually a least a little bit obnoxious, but she upped it in this book to “raging bitch.”
Ha ha ha! The booth manned by Karen, Andrew and Suzi topples over in the breeze. Mal calms the three of them down—they’d been worried that no one would want to come to their broken booth—by suggesting it looked like a scene from The Wizard of Oz and was magical. It’s actually really cute the way she turns the kids’ mood around, although my favorite part was that Adam was standing right behind her, scoffing at the idea the whole time.
At the end, Mrs. Gonzales, Dawn’s teacher and the head of the recycling committee, asks her to be co-chair. Which doesn’t sound like a good idea on her part.
Stacey: floral leggings, pink shirt with big sleeves, long vest, black fedora (OMG, she’s totally Blossom!)
Next week: #58 Stacey’s Choice


  1. I actually like Dawn. She's passionate! But she does go WAY overboard in this book. I was wondering why you skipped Keep Out Claudia. Have you blogged it before and I just missed it? BTW, I really enjoy your blog!

    1. Thanks! I did indeed blog Keep Out Claudia. I got tired of being sequential, and last year I blogged based upon whose birthday was which month. #56 was done in November, which doesn't have a birthday. I decided to go for pure cheesiness that month. Here's a link:

  2. I absolutely cut up six-pack rings because of this book. And when I see an un-cut one that my husband tossed, I think of Dawn. And then feel guilty that some animal might get strangled--even though the plastic probably gets melted down or whatever at the recycling plant--and take it out to cut up.

    I'm excited to see more vlogs about the other sitters! Will you do them for Abby, Shannon, and Logan, too?

    1. I'm hoping to vlog everyone, although I haven't decided when or what book. (Except Claudia, because I have a can on the shelf in my house that I've labeled Crazy Peaches. Heh!)