Last night, while we were supping with our friends the Sondereggers, the conversation inevitably turned to childhood memories. We were talking about books we read as children, and the Boxcar Children came up. My mind conjured up a funny memory at the mention of these books. I was an avid reader of them as a child, being fascinated by the idea of surviving in the woods with no parental supervision. However, as I moved along in the series, I became more and more annoyed with the relentlessly positive interaction among the siblings. I mean, MY family never interacted that way.
So, cynical child that I was, I set out to write a parody of the Boxcar Children. I think I wrote only about a page and half (I wish I had the document with me). I remember that it included at least one argument among the children, going something like this: Henry suggests a solution to whatever problem they are trying to solve, Jessie disagrees with him, Benny then complains about the heat, Violet tells him to stop complaining, and over it all Grandpa is trying to quiet them down by threatening severe punishment. Anyone who has read the Boxcar Children will know that this scenario is exactly the opposite of any that would occur in the books.
At any rate, that memory was so funny to me because it seems crazy that I even tried to write a parody at the age of 10 (or 11, or 12, I can’t remember). Just shows you what kind of strange child I was. I think my parents taught me somehow to discern false portrayals of human interaction, and then my desire to make people laugh kicked in.