Boo Talks Back

November 3, 2008
By Lindsay Fredericks, South Plainfield, NJ

(Boo Radley From To Kill A Mockingbird Speaks Out)

I don't really know why I was such a big deal around town. Sure, my dad was an overzealous Baptist who believed even our neighbor's cat Whiskers was headed to Hell in a hand basket. And I was indeed locked up in the house for fifteen years after I was arrested for some stupid pranks involving deceitfully-wrapped laxatives. And I did stab my dad with a pair of scissors. But they were the rounded ones. You know them, better at tearing paper than cutting it, probably couldn't slice butter. But other than that, my life story isn't all that interesting. It certainly doesn't warrant some devout following for me or anything. And yet you kids spent two summers running on and off my lawn like a pack of rabid squirrels.

I guess there wasn't anything better to do.

That's Maycomb for you.

To be honest, I felt bad for you kids. If acting out stories about my life and ripping your pants on my fence are your prime sources of entertainment, well, that's a little sad. So I started leaving you those little presents in that diseased tree. It shouldn't have surprised me that you were thrilled with chewing gum of unknown origin and carved bars of soap in your likeness.

Oh, and could you please stop thanking me for saving you from Bob Ewell? It really wasn't that big of a deal and if I see one more "thank-you" card dangling from my door handle, I am just going to lose it. You want to know the truth about that night?

I had been cleaning under the kitchen counter when I noticed a strange hissing sound from the pipes under the stove. Maybe I spent a little too long breathing the fumes down there while I tried to stop the leak, because I started hallucinating.

That knife wasn't for Bob Ewell.

I thought you really were a delicious ham.

The author's comments:
Inspired by Margaret Atwood's "Gertrude Talks Back"

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