Sunday, October 30, 2016

"Like you wouldn't just love to sit around discussing the area of a triangle with Wes." BSC FF #6: Stacey and the Boyfriend Trap (2000)

Aaaand the BSC enters the new millennium, with a plot full of ridiculousness.
Stacey's favorite teacher is quitting in the middle of the school year, and Stacey's planning a going away party. This drags various guys she's dated through the books back into her orbit: Pete and Sam, who both had him as a teacher; Robert, who's now good friends with Pete; and Wes the student teacher, who is interviewing for the teacher's job*. Meanwhile, both Ethan and Toby from Sea City will be in town for various reasons the same weekend as the party, AND Stacey's dealing with Jeremy related issues. She's jealous of the amount of time he's spending with Claudia. The two of them wind up breaking up partly because he has feelings for Claudia and partly because they really just don't have that much in common. And Stacey is okay with that.
*Yes, you and I both know Stacey never dated Wes. But Stacey doesn't seem to realize that.
Interesting Tidbits
I'm going to apologize in advance. I had this whole thing written and then...poof! Two thirds of it disappeared. So, since I have to reread most of the book, it will probably be shorter and less interesting than normal. Sorry.
Stacey is complimenting Samantha, and she says, "I was happy he'd found someone gorgeous and nice." Because looks definitely take priority over personality.
Stacey may be sophisticated, but not sophisticated enough to eat escargots. (Yes, she actually says eating escargots is sophisticated.)
Oh, and her first shot at a new year's resolution? To better color coordinate herself. Her second try is to be a better friend. Then she says that she's going to convince Claudia start talking to her again, because she's too proud to be the first one to talk to her. That's pretty funny in my mind.
This is weird: Stacey says she and Ethan are not old enough to drink coffee, yet Kristy was drinking mochaccinos five books ago. (These two have tea instead.)
Stacey's 'boys,' in their order of first mention: Jeremy, Ethan, Toby, Pete, Wes, Robert and Sam.
Why do I not remember that Toby and Alex are cousins? I really didn't recall that. I'm going to have to pull one of the Sea City books out and check that out.
Heh. Toby's email handle is tobythegreat. I'm really not surprised by that.
Every time Mr. Zizmore's name comes up in the book, I say it out loud and draw it out: Ziiizzzmooore. Try it; it's fun!
Jeremy seems needlessly jealous of Pete and Robert and everyone else. Yet he feels the need to defend himself for going to the mall with Claudia and Erica. (He says it was Erica's idea. Erica, who two books ago HATED the mall. Right.)
Mary Anne asks for help from Stacey and Kristy in decorating her bedroom in her new house. Both Stacey and Kristy seem shocked when they point out bedrooms they'd like to have and Mary Anne turns them down, because they're not her style. Have they not met her? (Bonus points for continuity, though: the room Stacey likes is navy and yellow and Mary Anne says she does like the colors. They're the colors she mentions liking back in #4, when she wants to redecorate her pink bedroom.)
The title quote is what Kristy says when she discovers Wes is applying for Mr. Ziiiiizzzzzzmoooooooore's teaching job. This is my new favorite sexual euphemism.
(Speaking of Wes, when he first mentions that he's applying for the job, Stacey's thrilled. Pete later mentions that he didn't think Wes was that good of a teacher. I can't decide if this is accurate about his teaching and Stacey was blind to it because of her crush, but I do remember Wes being a hot mess altogether.)
Ahh, Mary Anne. She says she likes being single because it means not having to think about what Logan wants or what he'd say about her plans or her outfit or whatever. Kristy says that sounds selfish. Stacey says (my paraphrase) that Mary Anne is such a doormat most of the time that she deserves to put herself first sometimes. MA seems shocked when Kristy and Stacey tell her she's one of the nicest people they know.
MA also says she feels like she's changing, after Kristy says that people don't really change. I know I've said it before, but I love the character development in Mary Anne in the FF series. Hell, in a couple of books, she's going to be getting grounded and sneaking out, rebelling against everything that's happened to her. She grows a spine and a voice, too.
Stoneybrook's Chinese takeout is called Wok 'N' Roll. Why am I not surprised by this?
I'm going to sum up a few thoughts I had about Stacey while reading this the first time. I'm routinely mean to her, and I know it. Stacey is probably my least favorite babysitter, probably for the same reason she was a lot of people's favorite sitter once upon a time. I didn't 'get' her sophistication or her boy-craziness. I used to want to be able to speak my mind, like Kristy, be creative, like Claudia, be an 'individual' like Dawn, and have a boyfriend, like Mary Anne. I never wanted to be Stacey. But I need to be fair about her, and to her. She actually attempts to keep her resolution, speaking to Claudia--even though Claudia is still mad at her--several times during the book. She actually acknowledges some of the flaws I perceive in her, even if nothing changes. (Like saying she knows she can be a snob in #2. She's actually very nice to Mary Anne in this book and compliments her bedroom pick, even if Stacey would never want a garden mural and a picket fence for a headboard. She says it's sweet, and that does NOT come across as condescending.) Yet, I will be a little mean to her. Blogging is not fun if you can't snark about the characters....
Speaking of, Stacey wonders if it's normal to have this many ex-boyfriends when you're thirteen. It is when you've been thirteen for a dozen years!
Brief mention of Stacey babysitting for the Hills. I'd almost forgotten about them!
How is it that most of Stacey's exes are not over her/keep raving about her/all want her time at the same time? 
By the way, the back mentions five exes. With Wes, we're at six. (Again, not an ex, but Stacey keeps treating him like one.)
Aww, Claudia and Stacey make up. Smiley face.
I do want to say, I like that they're playing up the differences between Claudia and Stacey, and letting them have friends outside of the BSC. (Last time Stacey tried that, she ended up quitting the club, remember?) I just realized that all of Stacey's boyfriends have either been her age (Robert, Pete, Jeremy) or older (Ethan, Toby and Sam are all in high school. And let's not mention Wes ever again. Except one more time at the end) while Claudia's one long-term boyfriend up to now was younger and maybe gay. (Okay, I forgot Mark. He was 13, but in a lower grade. And I didn't like him, so he doesn't count.) It's nice for Stacey to be able to hang with Rachel, whose urban and 'sophisticated' like she is, while Claudia can hang out with Erica, who's artsy and creative like she is.
Finally, I'm starting to see what Claudia and company didn't like about Rachel when she was younger. Now that Stacey is friends with Claudia again, Rachel keeps trying to put doubt into her head about what Jeremy's relationship is with Claudia. I could see Kristy and Claudia hating someone for virtually no reason, but Mary Anne? Not so much. Rachel's reputation must have been earned.
Pete says he can't talk in public. Wait, what? He's eighth grade president and gave speeches for that. He also emceed awards night in M#4, among other things. It's just an excuse for Stacey to give the speech for Mr. Ziiiiiiiiiiiiiizzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzmmoooooooooooooooooooooooooooore.
Wacky hijinks ensue when both Toby and Ethan have to hang out with Stacey during the same time she's supposed to be helping decorate for the surprise party. Stacey asks her mother to chat with them for a minute while she gets ready. Stacey's mom: "I don't think they'll be thrilled to hang out with me." Stacey: "Sure they will. You can be very entertaining." My mind when really dirty right then.
So Stacey and Jeremy break up, and she says she's going to make an effort to not have her life revolve around boys. Yet she gets all excited at the thought of hanging out with Ethan more and knowledge that Wes got Mr. Z's teaching job, so that seems to be working out pretty poorly for her.
Stacey: black velvet overalls, long sleeved white shirt, headband with peace signs, ankle high boots; blue sweater and jeans
Next: I'm taking a break for NaNoWriMo (my first shot--not sure how well I'll do) but I'll be back in December with #7


  1. One can argue that a "mochaccino" is more sugar than coffee. I know lots of middle schoolers who order Starbucks frappuccinos, but wouldn't even think of ordering an actual cup of coffee (regardless of how much milk and sugar you can add). Plus Kristy was in California with her new stepmom. Maybe Zoey ordered it and Kristy figured it'd be fine.

  2. The part about coffee stood out to me, too. I know a lot of middle school and high school students who drink blended coffee drinks. I don't like the stuff myself, but it stood out.

  3. One thing I loved about this book was that Mr ZIIIIIIZZZZMMMMOOOORRRRREEEEEE moves to Houston because his wife gets a job with NASA. How cool is that? He didn't get the job, his wife did, and it's for freaking NASA? Love it.

    And it's definitely mentioned in #8 that Toby and Alex are cousins. I don't know about the other Sea City books.

    Sadly, I wanted to be a mix of Stacey and Claud when I was a kid because I was boy crazy but I didn't want diabetes.

    I meet kids who like/drink coffee. I think it depends on the family.