Pen Pals #3, P.S. Forget It!

Why do these girls even put up with Palmer’s bullshit? So Palmer finally has Simmie for a pen pal, and Lisa mentions that he’s kind of a dumbass. Palmer gets her tweed slacks in a twist.

Mysteriously, Rob, Lisa’s pen pal, says he has to be away for a bit and won’t be able to write for a while. Palmer convinces her that it’s because Rob’s an ass. Finally, Lisa starts getting mushy love letters from Rob asking her to meet him somewhere. One is to go into town where he doesn’t show up, and the next one is to meet him at the boat house and he doesn’t show up, but Simmie does. it turns out that the kids at Ardsley boys school are pledging secret societies, and Simmie is pledging to be a part of the Hydraulic Dudes, so one of his tasks was to humiliate one of his roommates. If it is so secret, how come everyone knows?

Lisa finds out that Rob is really in the hospital and has an absolute shit fit, and tries to sneak out to go visit him, but their housemother Maggie Grayson finds her and feeds her cookies and enables her by not turning her in. Wouldn’t it fucking suck to be a housemother?

Finally, the school is having a Strawberry Pancake Breakfast and inviting the Ardsley boys. A Strawberry Pancake Breakfast sounds like fricking heaven to me. Maybe it’s just because I am starving right now. Simmie is dressed like Pee Wee Herman as one of his hazing sites, and Palmer is peeved to be seen with them. Lisa and Rob make lovey-dovey and he asks her to wear his pin. And Palmer gets away with her shit, yet again.

Lisa and Rob are actually a cute couple. I know, why not the snark? They seem to be pretty into each other and actually know about each other’s interests and seem to be genuinely interested in each other’s personalities. Rob is a cutie. Gross, he’s thirteen! But I’ll bet Logan Bruno couldn’t hold a torch to him.

Oh wow, chock full of outfit-y goodness. First, the cover: Lisa’s green outfit? Fantastic. And her layered scrunch socks and Bass boat shoes rock my world. Did anyone have shoes like that? You wouldn’t tie them normally, you would make little twists at the ends and have them stick out. You feel me?

For her fake date, Lisa wears mutiple colored t-shirts (?) with striped bike pants. For the breakfast, Shanon wears long, oversized Hawaiin-print shorts and a bright red sleeveless T-shirt from Lisa. Lisa borrows a silky, knee-length scarlet shirt and a pair of snug-fitting white leggings. Oh, the nineties.

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19 thoughts on “Pen Pals #3, P.S. Forget It!

  1. greer says:

    Hydraulic Dudes? What?

    I hate Logan Bruno so much. I think it would be hard for me to find another fictional thirteen-year-old boy who annoys me more than Logan Bruno.

  2. Magpie says:

    “For her fake date, Lisa wears mutiple colored t-shirts (?) with striped bike pants. For the breakfast, Shanon wears long, oversized Hawaiin-print shorts and a bright red sleeveless T-shirt from Lisa. Lisa borrows a silky, knee-length scarlet shirt and a pair of snug-fitting white leggings. Oh, the nineties.”

    Wow. It’s quite scary how clearly I can picture those outfits on childhood friends in the early 90s!

  3. Beth says:

    OMG!! The Bass shoes…..whoa! Sorry, I was back in 7th grade again for a moment! We thought we were so cool twisting those damn laces and tight rolling our jeans. I am sure I looked hot, especially with the curling iron burn on my forehead! Come to think of it, I think I had the Hawaiian shorts and sleeveless t-shirt ensemble also. Crazy……..

  4. Laura says:

    I only ever read a couple of Pen Pals books – we didn’t have many at the local library – but they were a pleasant enough substitute when there were no BSC or SVH books around. Did Ann M Martin kick off the whole “describe everyone’s awful outfits” thing? There was never much of it in SVH, which has been around for longer than the BSC…It’s just that the descriptions of the outfits seem straight out of an emergency BSC meeting.

  5. Amber Tan says:

    “And her layered scrunch socks and Bass boat shoes rock my world. Did anyone have shoes like that? You wouldn’t tie them normally, you would make little twists at the ends and have them stick out.”

    Hell yeah. I loved Bass boat shoes! I had a few pairs but I had friendship pins on the ends of the laces that stuck out.

    “I am sure I looked hot, especially with the curling iron burn on my forehead!”

    BWAH! Beth, I so remember having a similar burn — it didn’t fully heal until sophomore year of HS. 😉

    “Wouldn’t it fucking suck to be a housemother?”

    Abso-fucking-lutely it would. Unless you happened to be Edna Garrett on Facts of Life although I always thought she should have offed Blair.

    Mmmmm…strawberry pancakes…

  6. snappleaddict says:

    This was the only Pen Pals book I ever owned, and what pissed me off the most about it was that it opens with Palmer receiving love letters from Simmie, and all the other girls are creeped out by it and basically tell Palmer that he sucks, but when Lisa starts receiving the fake love letters from Rob, suddenly they’re serious and he’s so great and everything. Hypocrites much? Although Palmer was a bitch, I think Lisa had it coming for how she acted in the beginning. Then again, I did hate Lisa.

  7. ihatewheat says:

    Totally. There was something about Lisa. Palmer was privileged but at least was open about it. Lisa also came from a privileged background, but pretended she was so open and nice and accepting when in fact she is super self-absorbed.

  8. Amber Tan says:

    “I think Lisa had it coming for how she acted in the beginning. Then again, I did hate Lisa.”

    Make room on that bench. Lisa was a superficial beyotch.

  9. Lemur says:

    Holy hell, I heart that cover. Between the khakis with the French roll, the scrunch socks, the penny loafers, the boaties … it’s like being back in 7th grade. And yeah, I have the knee-length Hawaiian short rockin’ then — Jams brand or nothing. They were later supplanted by Skidz pants.

  10. Nancy says:

    greer- in regards to the most irritating fictional thirteen year old boy, i’d have to say that Phil Marsten from the saddle club books really fills that spot for me. Although, come to think of it, he may be on par with Logan…I don’t know what’s worse for the street cred of a teenage boy, babysitting or ponies.

    Btw I know the saddle club is totally lame for all you super cool sweet valley girls but sometimes… I love it more than the BSC.
    :O

  11. Amber Tan says:

    “Btw I know the saddle club is totally lame for all you super cool sweet valley girls but sometimes… I love it more than the BSC.”

    FTR, Nancy, I love the Saddle Club waaay more than BSC too. 🙂

  12. jms says:

    The blonde girl’s outfit is totally me, ca. 1990-1991 (eighth grade). I would have practically killed to have her hair, too, but alas, mine was straight and brown and refused to hold a curl. And I was never allowed to get a perm. Sigh.

  13. cmx says:

    woah, i just found this blog & i am so psyched that you are re-capping the “pen pals” books. i was all over the serial fiction when i was a kid. i got into the BSC right when they first came out & i LOVED “pen pals”. like a fool, i sold all my serials on ebay a few years ago (i needed money because i was getting divorced). “pen pals” are the only ones i kept. when my boyfriend comes over, he silently judges me when he sees them on my bookcase with all my anarchist histories & contemporary “new yorker”-style lit. i can’t wait for “sam the sham” & ”
    amy’s song”! my faves…

  14. Tara says:

    Wow. I just found this link on my friend’s website, and I have to say that I’m both horribly ashamed and very excited to see many, many familiar titles on here. I thought I was the only teen in the world that read the Pen Pals books in 1991. I’m glad that I’m not alone. Keep up the awesome reviews!!!

  15. Chelsea says:

    I want to know whether a Strawberry Pancake Breakfast consists of strawberry flavoured pancakes or pancakes with strawberries!

    BTW, Palmer dresses really CRAP for a rich and spoilt girl…even for the ’80s/’90s!

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