Thursday, January 31, 2008

The Baby-sitters Club #51 Stacey's Ex-Best Friend

Since the comments on the last post have indicated that I'm not the only one who loves Laine, I decided to do a whole Laine post! Let me tell you, I was searching for about an hour and a half for this thing because it wasn't in my room or in our basement book shelves. I was getting so upset and then I finally found it under my bed. I'm sorry for mistreating you and keeping you hidden away, baby!

This book has everything: fights, boys, an only sort of lame subplot, Laine, and a card catalog fight. What could be better? I always liked this one when I was younger, as you will clearly see later on with all the creases in the cover. I loved it hardcore! In fact, let's not delay the awesomeness any longer, and get to the good stuff.

So Stacey is talking to Laine on the phone, and Laine mentions that she has a week off of school coming up for winter break. No, not the week in between Christmas and New Year's, but the week before Valentine's Day. The hell? I never got a random week off of school! Maybe Laine just gets it off because she's amazing. Anyway, Laine says she has so many things to choose to do, like go to parties with her new boyfriend (more on that hot mess later), or her school's ski trip, or to her aunt and uncle's place in Florida. Stacey says she should come to Stoneybrook, and before Laine can tell her that she'd rather wake up to a pee filled bed again, Stacey hangs up to go ask her mom. Her mom says yes, and Stacey calls Laine back to tell her to come. I don't know why Laine didn't tell her to shove it. Stacey tells her it'll be awesome, and Laine kind of faintly agrees. Actually, Stacey uses the word distant about 80 times, which confuses Laine, who is not fluent in BSC-ese.

Stacey starts planning on tons of stuff to do, like going out to restaurants because she says Laine likes to eat. Yeah, I bet not. She heads off to her BSC meeting, and we delve into the horrors of the Chapter 2. Stacey tells them that Laine is coming, and Mary Anne says she can come to SMS's Valentine's Day Dance, which is being held on Friday the 13th. Mallory pauses in her gum wrapper chain and says she has an important announcement; she's going to the dance with Ben. Everyone's just like, "That's nice," and continues talking about other stuff. Oh man, it was so hilarious. How did I not pick up on all the subtle Mallory insults before?

A few days later, Stacey is Laine-proofing the house before the train from New York comes in. This consists of making sure there is seltzer in the fridge, a copy of the New Yorker on the coffee table, hiding her pig collection, organizing her tapes, and putting Claudia's ragdoll in her hamper with dirty underwear on top of it. Ew! I hope Claudia didn't want it back. Stacey examines her outfit, and she is wearing a shoelace barrette in her hair. Holy crap, I was the queen of the shoelace barrettes! I had one in every color!

Those aren't pics of mine, I just Googled them. My friend Amanda had neon ones, though. Hot!

Anyway, Laine gets off the train in a super sophisticated jean jacket with a fur collar, and red beret. Please tell me she's not wearing jeans with her jean jacket. Thank God, she's wearing black capri pants with lace bottoms. I had a pair of those, too, except mine were full length. They had flowered lace bottoms and were my very favorite pair of spandex pants. Stacey's mom drives them home (and does not run out of gas), and Stacey gives Laine the tour of Stoneybrook. When they get to Stacey's house, Laine asks where the town is. Stacey is shocked and says they just drove through it, she pointed out the library and the pizza place and everything! Laine is not impressed. I love her.

Stacey tells Laine she's going to have a super chilly and dibbly distant party that night. Laine gets excited, until she realizes it's just going to be a BSC sleepover. Here's a tip, Laine: don't sleep in the bed with Stacey. Laine acts like she's way too mature and cool for the BSC, and she is, and says that 13 year old boys are dorky. Mary Anne gets all pissed and says that Logan isn't dorky. Um, Mary Anne? Have you met Logan? Trust me, he's dorky. Kristy says Bart isn't dorky, either. Kristy? See the response for Logan. Laine's boyfriend, whose name is King, is 15, has bushy purple tipped black hair, and calls her Babe. Stud! Okay, I can see how it would be cool from Laine's perspective to date a 15 year old, but let's think about it the other way. What would a sophomore in high school want with an 8th grader? Laine totally puts out.

Laine stays home the first day Stacey has school, but is so bored that Stacey gets permission for her to come to SMS the next day. Again, Laine did not ask to go, but rather Stacey told her she was going. Laine and Stacey cut study hall to hang out with Claudia and Mary Anne, who are working on a project in the library. I hope they weren't working on the project together, because I definitely would not want Claudia as my school partner. Laine asks if they could go to a local coffeeshop, and is surprised that they can't leave school grounds. She also can't believe that the teacher will only let one kid out to go to the bathroom at a time. Where the hell did Laine go to school, where they get week long vacations, can leave school whenever they want, and hang out in the bathroom during class? They go to lunch, and Stacey arranges to have some boys sit with them. The boys start building food sculptures, except for Pete Black, who can't take his eyes off Laine. He tells Laine she has hair like gossamer, and she laughs at him. That's our girl!

After school, King calls Stacey's house for Laine. Stacey doesn't get the hint at first that Laine wants to have phone sex in private, but then does and overhears parts of the conversation. She hears the word "childish" and stupidly thinks Laine is describing some of the children the club sits for. No, Stacey, she's describing you. After Laine hangs up, the phone rings again, and it's Pete Black! He asks Laine to the dance, and she's just like yeah whatever, which I guess is encouraging, because he tells her she has eyes like limpid pools. Where the hell is he getting this shit?

Oh, the BSC is convinced that Friday the 13th is jinxing the dance, because all sorts of shit starts going down. Bart tells Kristy that he might not want to go to the dance, because there's a game on TV that he wants to watch. What surprises me is that it's not the other way around. Logan asks Mary Anne if they're going to actually dance at the dance. How dare he presume that! Mary Anne gets all huffy because she doesn't like to dance. Laine asks her what she does then, hahaha. Mary Anne says they usually walk around, talk to other people, and eat and stuff. Laine is not impressed. But, I have saved the best fight for last! Mallory and Ben have a study date at the library, and get into a huge argument at the card catalog about whether it's faster to search by author or subject, and get thrown out by the librarian. I nearly die laughing. Mallory has totally earned all of her votes! They all make up by the time of the dance.

Dance time! Laine makes fun of Stacey for wearing red to a Valentine's Day dance. Laine dresses in head to toe black. She's so goth. Laine also makes fun of Stacey for buying shit off of BSC's version of the Home Shopping Network, including some neon pink nail polish and a china clown. She says it's all "junque." Misspelling? Has Laine been hanging out with Claudia? She's also surprised that they're meeting the boys at the dance, because dates are supposed to pick up girls in their cars and drive them to the dance. Um, Laine? They're 13. Plus your super mature boyfriend is 15, which means he can't drive either. They get to the dance, and Pete drops Laine's corsage and it gets trampled by the same wild animals who trample Mary Anne's corsage in Mary Anne Saves the Day. Laine basically hates everything about the dance, including the band, the refreshments, the decorations, and every sixth grader. She also doesn't like Pete, and is sick of him stepping on her precious feet while dancing, so she tells him she's going to rest for awhile. As soon as she sits down, some hot 7th grader asks her to dance and she drools all over herself and accepts. Pete is mega hurt, and Stacey has had enough. She grabs Laine and pulls her out to yell at her. Laine says she wants to go home, and Stacey calls her mom and tells her to pick them up. Laine totally grabs the front seat in the car, and Stacey tries to force her out, but her mom tells her to just go sit in the back. Laine totally rules at Shotgun.

Laine gets on the next train to New York, and goes home, Stacey says she knows their relationship will never be the same, and writes her a kind of snotty letter and sends it off with her half of their best friends necklace enclosed. Claudia comes over, and they watch TV in hopes of purchasing some china clowns.

Sub-plot: The BSC plans a Valentine's Masquerade party for the kids. They all make valentines and sign their names in dumb codes. Carolyn, who has a mullet, likes an older boy, and Marilyn has a crush on a boy too. Nicky Pike makes a valentine for a girl, but won't tell anyone who it is, and the BSC spends tons of time trying to figure out who they all like. Laine makes fun of them, of course, but trust me, Laine, this is way better than hearing about the latest thing that non-Little Pete Jackie Rodowsky broke. They have the party, and Nicky likes Marilyn, who likes him back, but thinks her name is Carolyn. I guess he can't tell the difference between a mullet and regular hair. Carolyn has the hots for James Hobart. I hope they can agree on how to use the card catalog effectively. Ooh, and Nicky and Marilyn hold hands! Do you think that if they break up he'll give her the Bizzer Sign? I hope so!

Look at the expression on Laine's face. She's totally over it.


blue828 said...

You know, at the time I read this (I think I was about 10, probably getting too old for these) I did think Laine was a pretty raging bitch.

However, I don't think Stacey gave her enough credit for actually showing up when it was clear there were about 768 things Laine would rather spend her week off doing. Bitchy as she was, I truly believe her sole reason for coming was so she wouldn't hurt Stacey's feelings.

And while being such a twat about everything was a little uncalled for, I think Stacey should have cut her some slack. If I had an entire week off school and spent it visiting my longtime bestie, and I had to endure listening to a bunch of annoying 13 year olds obsessing over the personal lives of their elementary age charges, going to class when I had the week off, and most of all, hang with Mallory, you can bet I'd get in touch with my inner bitch too.

snappleaddict said...

Word. To everything. Who wants to go to school in a teeny little boring town and hang out with people they really don't have anything in common with on their vacation?

Colette said...

I hate Laine in this book. Not because of the way she acts with Stacey or the BSC but because she's mean to Pete. I have a crush on Pete. Or at least I did until I saw that cover. I think my heart just broke.

snappleaddict said...

I'd still hit it. I like his sexy 90's boy-bangs.

Karla's Favorite Ho said...

Ummm when are we going to White Castle? It's what I crave.

snappleaddict said...

Any day I don't have to be around people for awhile, because White Castle gas is not what I crave.

kamala said...

Ooh, did you actually get that free BSC bookmark? I would have loved that shit when I was a kid.

michelle said...

This book was always one of my favs growing up even though I thought Laine was a bitch. Stacey was my favorite growing up because I loved how "sophisticated" she was and I loved when she left the BSC!!

Most memorable part of the book for me was when Laine gets on the phone with King and says something like, "Hi Heart, it's me, Babe." L-A-M-E.

Thanks for the update so soon!!!

snappleaddict said...

I did have the bookmark! Since my books were bought in packs of four, I had at least four of them. They had a picture of the narrator of the book, and then facts about them like their birthday and likes and dislikes. I never could keep a bookmark, so they've been long gone for years. I thought they were pretty cool when I had them, though.

mo pie said...

This is really fantastic. I always loved that Laine thought "King" and "Heart" were such dibbly cool nicknames!

And please don't stop doing them just because Tiff's blog exists. There can't possibly be too many blogs like this. And you also did Flowers in the Attic! Rock!