June 27, 2011

BSC Super Special #12, Here Come the Bridesmaids!: “I Do” Times Two

Posted in books tagged , , , , , , , at 10:34 pm by Jenn

I didn't know 13-year-old girls could marry each other in California

Summary: Dawn’s dad is getting married, so Mary Anne, Claudia, and Kristy fly out to California to help with the wedding. Well, Claudia helps with the wedding. Kristy basically does nothing the entire book. Back in Stoneybrook, Mrs. Barrett is getting married, Stacey’s a bridesmaid, and Mallory and Shannon are hired to watch the kids at the wedding. Hijinks ensue.

  • Dawn thinks Mary Anne‘s going to be her fellow bridesmaid in the wedding, despite the fact that she never asked her dad or Carol about it. She buys her a dress and everything. When Mary Anne finds out that Dawn assumed she would be in the wedding, they get in a fight, but it doesn’t last long, like most of their lame fights. Dawn’s also adjusting to having Carol around all the time, and there’s some brief stuff about her having to make sure her grades are good before she goes back to Connecticut.
  • Mallory and Ben Hobart make tentative plans to take a bunch of kids Christmas caroling (oh, yeah, the book takes place right around Christmas), but she has to cancel them, and they get into an equally lame fight. Then they make up. Yeah, like you really care about Mallory. She also does a disastrous job looking after four of the Barrett/DeWitt kids at the wedding, which is pretty much what you would expect if you put a pre-teen in charge of four rowdy kids.
  • Jessi is enlisted to play Santa at the mall. Yes, Jessi. Apparently no one cares that she’s a) 11, b) a girl, and c) not white.
  • Claudia helps out a bunch with the wedding, taking photographs and styling hair and being dumb about flowers.
  • Kristy hijacks the We ♥ Kids Club’s goodbye party for Dawn, because we all know how flakey and unstructured they are, and how awesome and organized Kristy is. She should have stayed in Stoneybrook. Not only would she have had the kids in line at the wedding, she would have arranged a big project for them involving homemade wedding presents.
  • Shannon is also in this book.
  • Jeff worries that Mr. Schafer’s housekeeper, Mrs. Bruen, will be fired after Carol moves in, I guess because women are always so good at cooking and cleaning and all that stuff. But then he learns that Mrs. Bruen is actually going to be working more hours. Whatever, Mrs. Bruen, get in the kitchen and make Jeff a sandwich.
  • Suzi Barrett is worried that Santa won’t be able to find her house, since the families are moving. Inspired by two stories she heard in school – Hansel and Gretel and Theseus in the Labyrinth – she leaves a trail of cookie crumbs from the old house to the new one, which is both adorable and brilliant.

This also marks the end of Dawn’s six months (or whatever) in California and her return to Stoneybrook, which means we’ll barely hear about Shannon from here on out. Fortunately, we won’t be saddled with Dawn for too much longer.

Thoughts: The Vista Hills Mall has a health-food snack bar called Health’s Angels. Har har.

Why does Dawn have to pay for her bridesmaid’s dress?

Mallory once gave Claire a hole-puncher for Christmas. First of all, you suck, Mallory. Second of all, what’s a kid that age going to do with a hole-puncher, other than make a big mess?

They could have solved the whole Suzi problem by telling her Santa would find them through magic. Kids accept magic as a valid answer to any question. I guess Suzi’s smarter than everyone else in this book.

Why in the world would you arrange for movers to come the same night you get married? I guess the ghostwriter couldn’t have Carol move in with the Schafers before the wedding. That would be WRONG.

And why would you expect your future stepmother to ask her fiancé’s ex-wife’s stepdaughter to be her bridesmaid? Especially when they’ve only met once before? Also, why does Mary Anne think she deserves to be a bridesmaid when she hears she isn’t going to be one? These people mean nothing to her!

Trivia: Jessi’s dad is six-two.

The Schafers only serve health food while Kristy, Claudia, and Mary Anne are visiting, but then serve duck at the wedding. So not only are they rude, they’re also hypocrites.

Logan, why are you in this book?

Dawn: “I even loved every morsel of that cake, despite the fact that it was made with way too much refined sugar.” That cake had your face on it and was made by an 8-YEAR-OLD, you UNGRATEFUL WITCH. Urge to kill, rising….

“Franklin wears red pajamas every single night.” Uh…how do you know that, Suzi?

I would laugh more at Mallory, but I have my own horrible-sitting-job-at-a-wedding-story. Well, it’s actually a horrible-sitting-job-at-a-wedding-reception story. When I was in high school, my best friend and I were hired to watch four kids at a reception in D.C. (about ten miles from our hometown). There were two brother/sister pairs, all between the ages of four and eight. We didn’t know these kids or their families (they were out-of-town guests), and the kids barely knew each other. (I think they were distant cousins.)

We were put in a room with the kids, a TV, some videos, and some toys. The kids weren’t happy to be away from their parents, and they especially weren’t happy to be stuck in a room with two teenaged girls they didn’t know when there was a big party right down the hall. A big party with cake. So the kids kept trying to escape the room, every five minutes for about three hours. They wouldn’t listen to me or my friend, they kept whining and complaining, and they were rude to us and each other. The fact that the food brought to us wasn’t great didn’t help.

Finally, the reception was winding down, so one of the fathers came to relieve me and my friend and pay us. He was totally drunk (I remember him standing partway down the hall, just staring at me, looking like he would fall over if he took a step), and he handed me a couple of 20s, telling me it was for both me and my friend. Two sitters + four demons kids + three or so hours + horrible accommodations = $20 each, which works out to about $7 an hour. I can’t remember how much I usually made for babysitting back then (this would have been 1999), but it was probably closer to $10 an hour.

But wait, it gets better. He added that that had to cover our cab fare back home, because no one had arranged a ride for us. Cab fare from D.C. back home would have eaten up half our fee, at least. Fortunately, someone heard about the payment and gave us some extra money. We also got a ride back home from a couple of women (who hadn’t been drinking) going the same way. I believe that was when I told my friend that if she ever needed someone to babysit with her again, she should NOT call me.

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