A Wedding, My Dance Moves, An Attack

This is the last part of a three part series as I read through T.J. Matthews Choose Your Own Adventure Series. CYOA books place the reader as the main character who must choose his or her own path. In the past adventures I was bitten by a rabid dog and almost contracted cholera from Lake Victoria. Today I’m reading The Village Safari.

For the third summer in a row I am visiting my friends in Tanzania. On the trip over I’m having deja vu all over again because everything is the same until page 6. We use the same dialogue, I have the same thoughts and fears, and we take the exact same airplanes. I’m hoping for a little variety here.

Dave and Danielle start fighting about what to do. We can go to the market, go to a wedding, or stay home. Danielle is the one who suggests staying home and I instinctively check my breath. I’m ready for go time. Dave makes fun of Danielle because she has a doll house and then Dave starts bragging about the African house he’s building with his friends that has a sloped roof and grass walls. Danielle says her doll house has a fridge and a swimming pool and although the book doesn’t say this but I’m about to go grab my swim trunks and sunscreen. Debbie is making a cake for the wedding this afternoon and Danielle asks me what I want to do.

I turn to page 11 because I’m told weddings, in similar fashion to full moons for werewolves, turn women into romantic carnivores. Darryl and Debbie go ahead to the wedding before us kids. Finally Danielle is ready to leave. After walking a ways their black cat shows up behind us. Danielle wants to take the cat back home, but David doesn’t want to wait. Danielle asks me if I want to go with her and take the cat back, or if I want to go ahead with Dave.

I decide to play it smooth and go with Dave. The book doesn’t say this but I’m actually allergic to cats. I didn’t want to turn into the red eyed sneezing monster on our little walk back. We get to the church and “Jingle Bells” is being played. I guess it’s the music used for the wedding march because it’s a demo programmed into their keyboard. Danielle comes in right when the wedding is about to start. Two girls walk down the aisle and spray aerosol cans and then baby powder everywhere. The book doesn’t say this but it gets into my eyes and starts burning. Suddenly, right as the bride is about to appear, the family’s dog, Simba, is standing at the church entrance. Darryl runs to go get and motions for Dave to follow. Everyone starts laughing, but I’m too busy trying to see where I am.

I choose to stay at the wedding with Danielle. The bride and groom and pastor are saying things to each other. The book doesn’t say this but I can barely see because my eyes sting so bad. They’re watering and tears are streaming down my cheeks. Danielle mistakes my tearing up for actually crying and pats my hand. I do a few sniffles and push out a few more tears. Finally it’s almost over and the bride and groom instead of kissing sign a contract of how much the groom is going to pay the bride’s father. Which I thought was a pretty crappy deal for the groom.

Then everyone starts dancing. I naturally do a few moves of my own. The Sprinkler, the Q-tip, Roll the Dice, The Lawn Mower, the Bum Jump, and The Elaine. I can’t see much but I imagine it’s glorious, the crowd is probably gathering around me chanting my name. David returns from taking Simba home and we leave to go the reception.

On our way to the reception we are joined by a bunch of African kids. The suddenly, without warning, we are attacked by bees. The sound is deafening. My options are to outrun the bees or run for the house that might be locked. I try to run. I’m stung twice and then I kill one with my bare hands. I look behind me and Danielle is carrying a crying child. The bees leave as quickly as they came. They stung everyone.

The book asks if I’m allergic to bees and I am so I turn to page 74. Danielle runs to the reception and gets her mom Debbie who puts some medicine on my stings and then makes me lay down. The book doesn’t say this but I want to go to the reception and pull off some more of my dance moves and woo Danielle, but she says she’ll stay with me and make sure I don’t die from the stings, which we all know means she wants to make out with me. The End.

I tried to find the author of this series, T.J. Matthews, on the internet. The book says that T.J. is a woman attending the University of Tennessee, but I’m not so sure T.J. isn’t actually a man posing as the bassist of Sunset Black. We may never know.

Contracting Cholera in Africa

canoeing safariThis is the second blog of a three blog series where I narrate my adventures through Choose Your Own Adventure Books given to me after I made a sarcastic remark about how much I liked them and was taken seriously. Read the first adventure here.  Let’s embark on The Canoeing Safari by T.J. Matthews.

I’m actually visiting the same family again, Darryl and Debbie and their kids David and Danielle.  The book doesn’t say this, but I’m wondering if I have any other friends that I can visit during the summer.  Maybe a senile aunt.  When I finally arrive in Kahunda, Danielle suggests we go on a canoe adventure to the islands.  Right from the start Danielle is hitting on me.  The book doesn’t say that, but at one point she is “tossing her hair,” which really means she wants me.

I continue to page 6.  As we get prepared for the trip Danielle tells David she just wants to paddle around the islands, not explore them, but David isn’t listening.  David ends up giving in to his sister because he’s a wussy.  Then they start fighting over whether or not to go left or right up the lake to fish.  They ask me what I want to do.  Although, the book doesn’t say this, but I’m not listening to what they’re asking me because Danielle just applied some unscented lotion that I’m trying to smell.  I decide to walk to the right along the shore, which is where Danielle wanted to go.

I continue to page 22.  My friends tell me about a deadly virus in the water and warn me not to touch the water.  The book doesn’t say this, but I’m ready to go back to the house and eat cookies and drink goat’s milk with Deb, but Danielle’s unscented-lotion is casting a spell on me.  We find nine worms to fish with and then we set off on the canoe.  If I know how to paddle I have to turn to page 27.  If I don’t I’m to turn to page 30.

I continue to page 27.  As we’re paddling up to the Point, fishermen from the shore start yelling and waving at us as we go by.  David waves and Danielle doesn’t.  Danielle says that in African culture respectable women are to pretend they don’t hear when men call out to them.  The book doesn’t say this, but those fishermen are lucky parasitic water is between us.  We finally find a spot to fish and David puts a worm on Danielle’s hook and then hands me a fishing pole and some worms.  I’ll let T.J. narrate what the worms are doing: “As you stand there looking at it, it writhes in your palm and squirts some brown fluid into your hand.”  I’m then told that if this bothers me I’m to go to page 105.  But if holding a moving part of a worm doesn’t make me lose my cool, then I should go to page 116.  I know what T.J. is doing.  She’s trying to make me feel guilty for being so squeamish.  She’s trying to emasculate me and I’m not having any of it.

I continue to page 105.  I quickly throw the worms down and at the same time a wave hits the canoe and knocks me out of the boat into the water.  Fortunately, I was wearing a floatation device and I did not drown, but a big splash of water went into my mouth and I swallowed it.  I swim to shore and David paddles over and starts making fun of me, but Danielle gets mad at him and makes him paddle the canoe back by himself.  She is going to walk me home so we can hurry up and wash off the parasite before it starts burrowing into me.  Then she tells me I might get typhoid or cholera, but even though the book doesn’t say this I don’t really care because we’re walking home together and suddenly I’ve developed a limp and will need assistance walking.  When I get home I throw up on the kitchen floor.  I have a bad case of diarrhea and I don’t contract any deadly diseases.  The End.

That’s right, the adventure ended only after 107 pages.  I’m beginning to think my adventures in Africa have a sort of pattern.  But I will not give up because, even though the book doesn’t say this, but on our walk home Danielle accidentally touched my nipple.  I still have a chance.

(If you read all of this and laughed at my jokes, claim your prize here here.)

(If you didn’t read all of this and/or laugh, then go to hell.)

Bit By A Rabid Dog

At a church meeting I made a joke about Choose Your Own Adventure Books.  My sarcasm went undetected and the next day I had three brand new Choose Your Own Adventure Books leaning against my apartment door.  The first one is The Hunting Safari by T.J. Matthews and it’s 166 pages long.

I should not be making fun of CYOA Books that are made for kids.  But I can’t help myself.  CYOAB are written in second-person point of view, which uses the form of “You” (as opposed to “I” for first person point of view) and puts the reader as the main character.  For example the first sentence of the book reads, “Two of your best friends, David and Danielle, moved to Africa about three years ago.” I’m getting excited already.

(If you want to continue reading this, scroll down.)

(If you want to stop reading this, go screw yourself.)

I am visiting my best friends and their parents Debby and Darryl.  Which is really cute because all their names start with the letter D.  Danielle, the book tells us, has black eyes and brown hair, while David has blue eyes and blond hair.  I think Deb was cavorting with the tourists on her trips into the city for “medicine”. 

They live in Tanzania, where Kawahili is spoken, not English.  In Tanzania people bathe in Lake Victoria and hunt wildlife.  The book says that I’m scared I might never make it back to my home country.  Deb and Darryl are Bible translators for Wycliffe and are helping the Wazinza people translate the Bible into their language. 

When we finally arrive at their house David says we’re going to go hunting with slingshots.  Which I thought was ironic since the David in the Bible kills Goliath with, what else, but a slingshot.  And although it doesn’t say this in the book, I don’t want to go hunting.  Danielle had grown since I’d last seen her.  If you know what I mean.  She’s wearing like a size six shoe now.

But I guess I had no choice in the matter and I had to turn to page six. Debbie told us we had to be home by 5:30 and the book doesn’t say this, but I flipped her off when she turned her back.

I’ll let T.J. Matthews set the scene: “The air is dry and the sun is hot.”  The book doesn’t say this but by this time I’m getting a real bad jock itch.  When David isn’t looking I sneak a peak down my pants and see big rashes.  I’ll have to ask Deb if she has any cream.  If she doesn’t I’m sure she’d be happy to make a “medicine” run. David tries to shoot some birds, but he keeps missing.  The book says that I think he’s a good shot.  Suddenly I see a dark spot on the top of a far off tree.  The bird is frekin huge, with a long beak and brown and green feathers.       

The book gives me three options:

(If you decide to shoot your slingshot at the bird, go to page 8.)

(If you tell Dave about it, go to page 9.)

(If you ignore it, go to page 11)

Unfortunately, the book doesn’t give me the option I want, which is:

(If you’d like to have Danielle feeding you grapes in a hammock by the lake side, go to page 100.)   

I don’t want David to shoot the bird, because he’s thinks he such a hot shot.  (Haha get it. I used hot and shot and it has a double meaning.)  And even though I don’t want to have the blood of an endangered specie on my hands, if I don’t shoot it David might try.  I turn to page 8.

(If you want to continue reading, scroll down.)

(If you want to watch Britney Spears, click here.)

Page 8 says I put a rock into my slingshot and then it gives me three options.  I decide to go to page 18 because I’ve used a slingshot before, but I’m not very good at it. At page 18 I try to shoot the bird and miss.  All the African boys point and make fun of me.  I’m personally ready to drop my gloves and do some aggressive mingling, but the books says I make an excuse to go look for the rock I just shot so they’ll stop making fun of me.  I go off into the woods and suddenly see a dog that is foaming at the mouth.  He keeps tripping and is obviously sick.  I start to run away and the dog starts chasing me.  I don’t know where I’m running but the dog won’t stop chasing me. 

I can:

(Run until I find a tree to climb.)


(Try and run home.)

I decide to try and make it home.  The dog is gaining on me and I jump for a tree branch but it’s too late.  The dog bites me.  But then another dog scares off the rabid dog and when I look up I see Danielle standing over me.  The book doesn’t say this, but she’s wearing short brown shorts and needs to shave her legs.  She helps me get home and Darryl and Debbie call for a plane to fly us into the city so I can get shots.  The End.

That’s right, it ended after page 32.  And I was really thinking I had something with Danielle, because, although the book doesn’t say this, but when she was helping me back to the house my hand accidentally touched her hair. Maybe I’ll go back and say I’m an expert shot and kill the damn bird.

(If you thought this blog was mildly humorous, leave a comment.)

(If you thought this blog was a waste of your time, go screw yourself, and then leave a comment.)