Next up on my reading challenge and my homework for Judy Blume’s MasterClass is the book “Blubber.” Originally written in 1974, not much has changed in the world of kids. Bullying is just as problematic now as it was in the ’70s. Elisabeth told me that I would probably enjoy this book because of how I grew up.
I don’t know a kid growing up who wasn’t bullied in some way, or who wasn’t the bully themselves. I don’t think it really hit me until junior high. I remember wearing the same neon green sweatshirt as a pretty girl in my class. Someone said to her, “Look, you guys are twins.” She replied something to the effect that the difference was that mine was the size of a tent.
Sometimes, I think bullying is caused by the things you do. Maybe if I had not stood up in front of the entire junior high and danced a one-man Menudo concert (not once, but twice), I might not have been such an easy target.
The book “Blubber” talks completely about bullying and how even those who stand up get the tables turned on them. It’s easy to see why kids don’t want to stand up for others and how easy it is to fall into peer pressure. I don’t know if this is recommended reading in schools today, but it should be.
Blume tells the tale without preaching, and that was her main goal with writing this book. She lets the tables turn, even though it was wrong, just so that kids realize that everything you do has consequences. The consequence of teasing Linda was that the teasing turned on her.