If you’re reading this blog, chances are that books have had a major influence on your life. The ways that books have influenced me are countless, but one example particularly stands out in my mind.
When I was in elementary school, I was enamored of—nay, obsessed with!—The Baby-Sitters Club (or the BSC, as we true fans call it). Now, if you’re a woman between the ages of, oh, about twenty and thirty-five, I probably don’t have to tell you that this series follows babysitters Kristy, Claudia, Mary Anne, and Stacey (and, later, Dawn, Mallory and Jessi) as they sit for the kiddos of Stoneybrook, Connecticut; go on exotic vacations with their charges (how come I never got to do that as a babysitter?); and solve mysteries involving ghost cats, missing rings, and middle school vandals.
So crazy were my friends and I about the BSC that, in fifth grade, we started our very own BSC-inspired enterprise. I served as our club’s VP, a vaguely defined position that had me printing flyers to advertise our services and creating “kid kits” (another BSC-inspired idea)—elaborately decorated boxes filled with my old toys and games to share with our club’s charges.
We got a surprising number of sitting jobs as a result of our club membership. And although the club didn’t last too long, I continued to babysit throughout junior high and high school. I also continued to bring my old games, toys, and books to entertain the kids I sat for.
I never got to sit for kids in Hawaii or stop jewel thieves in their tracks—but my short stint in our club (and my longer run as a babysitter) still hold lots of happy memories.
Tell me, blog readers: how have books inspired you?