I once had an argument with my friend K.T. (Hi, KT!) about child stars. He insisted that they all turn out wacky when they grow up and I disagreed. Of course, when challenged to come up with a name of one who ended up normal, I couldn’t.
Apparently KT has been conferring with Greg over at Gottabook, because I just watched the movie he wrote, “Behind The Camera: The Unauthorized Story of Different Strokes”, and all I gotta say is…damn! It started off so happy and silly, then spiraled into a depressing black hole of drugs, arrests, assault, bankruptcy, unemployment, and, in one case, death by overdose.
Too many responsibilities and expectations at too young an age, well… aged them prematurely. Poor Arnold, Willis, and Kimberly, smiling for the cameras and perpetuating the romantic myth of child stardom, while watching their real lives crash down around them.
Whew! Okay, then. But watching it did remind me why I love writing children’s books so much. Spending my days immersed in Kid Lit is an escape from real adult world pressures. It reminds me how blissful and alive I felt when the biggest decision I had to make was which shade of red to choose from the jumbo Crayola box.
And I think Greg will agree with me. Although well-written and fascinating, the “Different Strokes” movie certainly made me thankful for my “normal” childhood, and even more thankful that I have a really cheery job!
And, KT, you were right...again. One less thing we have to disagree about.