Don’t Worry, Bee Happy
(book assigned by Admiral Fartmore)
Editor’s note: Whenever a bee is around, Beau gets all stiff and waves his arms around like some kind of animatronic fortune teller. It’s just a sweet little bee, why does he act like such a scaredy cat? It’s not like he’s introducing himself to a cute lady or something. What a wuss! It’s really funny when folks you know have deadly allergies.
Well, here we are: the first ever Piece of Shit Book Club™ review for Monsters Month 2015, the first annual time of year where we celebrate monsters and everything they’ve done for us. And so I have been assigned a Goosebumps book designed to scare the shit out of me. This one’s about bees, and was specifically picked for me because I am deathly allergic to them. Last time I was stung I was about eleven. I went into anaphylactic shock and almost died. I remember lying on the hospital bed struggling to breathe while my parents were crying. And to help me relive those wonderful memories, Admiral Fartmore has assigned me a book about a child that gets attacked by bees, stung by bees, and eventually turned into one. My reaction to finding out I had to read a book about disgusting fucking bees was basically this:
But here we are, talking about bees as if they’re not creepy and disgusting. Which they are. People like to talk about bees as if they’re these wonderful fucking animals just because they help pollinate plants. They basically land on a flower looking for food, they get some shit on their legs, which then falls off on another plant. That doesn’t impress me even a little bit, I mean, its not like they’re doing it out of the goodness of their heart, which, anatomically speaking, they don’t even fucking have. Okay, technically they have hearts. But can they love? No. They’re assholes. They’re basically like Australian tourists; they show up and are loud and annoying, and when they leave the place is much messier and the fat one’s pregnant. And they’re incapable of love.
Like bees, Australians are well known for the dull and unintelligible buzzing sound they produce, as well as their passionate racism. If you don’t think bees are racist, then I defy you to find me one that voted for Obama.
So what’s the basic plot of this bee-filled nightmare book that’s going to give me flashbacks to the time my parents were weeping over their sweet, convulsing little boy? This book tells the tale of Gary Lutz, a 12 year old American kid. He gets picked on. A lot. By everyone. Including adults. Everyone hates Lutz. In the first five or six pages, he is beaten up 3 times, insulted by his parents and his neighbours, and publicly humiliated at a Little League game.
Ashamed, he goes to play a computer game. He must have one of them new fandangled computers, since he has access to an “electronic bulletin board” which lets him send messages to other lonely computer users. Sound familiar? Its worth remembering at this point that the book was published in 1994. Anyway, he sees a message from a company that advertises how to “TAKE A VACATION FROM YOURSELF.” Sick of being bullied, Lutz goes to check them out. Turns out, they can swap people’s minds so that you can live in another body. He tells the woman that runs it that he saw her advertisement on the electronic bulletin board, and she responds with what is likely the most 1990s sentence ever written: “Oh, yes,” the woman replied with another smile. “A lot of people learn about us from their computers.”
This seems like a good spot to provide a quick nod to the most ’90s image of all time.
He ends up agreeing to swap minds with a guy named Dirk Davis, but shit gets all fucked up. Somehow, during the mind switching process, Dirk’s mind goes into Lutz’s body, but Lutz is now a bee. And Dirk’s body now has a bee mind. He buzzes around for a while trying to get help. The cat tries to eat him. The neighbour thinks that Lutz is one of the bees from his hive, so he catches Lutz with a net and throws him in the apiary. From beta to bee-ta, Lutz still can’t catch a break. He gets mixed up in a crowd of bees, and what follow is one of the most horrifying (and badly written) sentences ever: “Whooooa! I stumbled over the pile of wriggling, hairy bees. And as I staggered in terror, bees fell on top of me.” The idea of being trapped in a pile of wriggling hairy bee bodies is literally my worst nightmare. Actually wait, my worst nightmare is being attacked by a giant bee. But this is a close second.
Anyway, eventually he finds Dirk (who is now trapped in Lutz’s body), but Dirk doesn’t want to give up his new body. So Lutz stings him, and then suddenly remembers that he once read in a bee book that bees die after they sting something. He starts to fade to black… But then he wakes up! And he is back in his own body again! And we don’t know why! Dirk (now in his own body) apologizes for trying to steal Lutz’s, and they become friends. And Lutz isn’t afraid of bees any more! Which he was at the beginning even though the author forgot to mention it!
This isn’t directly relevant, but if you are looking for a Halloween costume, why not go as a sexy bee? I mean, what’s sexier than the idea of getting fucked by a giant flying monster with a poisonous stinger coming out of its ass?
The book is written in a fairly simple fashion, made up mostly of short sharp sentences ending in an exclamation point. Here are some examples, all taken from the same page (see if you can spot the one that makes no fucking sense at all):
- “I—I can’t stand it!” I cried. I could feel myself totally losing it!
- “Yuck!” It looked so disgusting. It made me sick!
- I was a bee—a bee trapped inside a hive!
- The sound was really driving me off the wall!
All those exclamation points get a little distracting, and make the book hard to read. Some people will say, “But these are kids books! And yeah, maybe they’re not exactly Tom Hemingway or Jane Austen, but they got kids readin’ back before readin’ was cool!” Well, to these ignorant lowbrows I have one word: Yuck! I mean, this book was awful! I felt like it was driving my head crazy while I read it! And its filled with bees! Which no one likes and no one has respect for! You know, they say that all the bees are dying and that means we’re all fucked. Well, good riddance! For all I care, they can buzz off!
You know, maybe you have nostalgia about reading Goosebumps books as a kid, well I don’t! And anyone who tries to defend them is really driving me off the wall!