The Bobbsey Twins
I was walking from my friend’s apartment to the BART station today, when I saw a couple who looked alike and had matched outfits. My first thought was, “Oh, look. It’s the Bobbsey Twins.” It was a sarcastic, unfriendly thought, but what immediately followed was a moment of confusion.
Okay, I thought to myself. I’m 33 years old. I’m mature enough to admit that I have no fucking idea who the Bobbsey Twins are.
Normally I can let this sort of thing go. But the whole train ride was spent mulling over the fact that I had been hearing about the Bobbsey Twins my entire life and I had no idea what it was actually referencing. (I suppose these days, people reference the Olsen twins instead. With any luck someday people will have no idea who the hell the Olsen twins were, too.)
Well, it turns out the Bobbsey Twins are characters in a 72-volume series of books begun in 1904. They are two perfect sets of twin children named Nan and Bert & Flossie and Freddie, with pets named Snap and Snoop. Together, they fight crimesolve mysteries even when there are no mysteries to be solved. Brilliant. At least Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys had actual crimes to handle.
(Flossie, btw, is a delightfully dental Victorian nickname for Florence.)
72 volumes of this? Are you fucking kidding me? 72 volumes of some master-race-modeled twins solving non-crime mysteries and hanging out with Snap and Snoop? I’m so glad that when I was a child a friend of my mom’s skipped this shit and just handed me Skeleton Crew. Sure, reading Stephen King at age 7 might have ensured that I will never go out on a lake in a raft ever ever ever. But ultimately, I prefer that to Merry Days Indoors and Out.
Before you ask—not that you were going to—no, my life is not enriched for knowing this. Neither is yours. Moreover, you know that fact you really needed to remember for that thing that you need to do? That’s been replaced. Surprise!