John Marsden Writing Topic #434

Describe the first incident you can clearly remember**

The first incident I can clearly remember is the first time I remember being in trouble with parents, and in public.

I was about four years old and I made a birthday card for my aunt for her birthday. I had heard the phrase ‘get stuffed’ before, plenty of times, I think mainly from my father’s mouth and I had heard people laughing at it, so I thought it was a comedic phrase. I don’t remember what the card said exactly but it would have been something along the lines of ‘happy birthday…get stuffed’.

I thought it was funny as I didn’t know what the phrase really meant, I distinctly remember my parents and most of my relatives that were at her birthday dinner expressing their outrage. I knew immediately that I was in trouble and my parents made me apologise.

I didn’t find out what ‘get stuffed’ really meant until my teen years and it was a while before I ever made birthday cards for any relatives again.



**Reference: Marsden J 1998, Everything I Know About Writing, Pan Macmillan, Australia.

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