The Wickeds are celebrating Edith’s double book birthday. Two on the same day. Yes, it’s twins! Or since one mom is Edith Maxwell and the other is Maddie Day, maybe it’s something more darkly complicated. Like clones via surrogacy. Or a man’s wife and mistress giving birth on the same day.
Twins are a staple of fiction down through the ages, from mythology to the Bobbseys. Shakespeare loved fraternal boy-girl pairs, like his own children.
Wickeds: Tell us your best twin story–real or fictional.
Barb: My favorite twin story is absolutely true. Most people who read this blog know my Maine Clambake Mysteries are set in a highly fictionalized version of Boothbay Harbor, Maine. There’s a swing bridge between Boothbay Harbor and Southport Island, that is a bridge that opens up to let boats go through. The bridge must have a tender day and night, and for forty-five years those tenders were identical twins Duane and Dwight Lewis. Imagine the fictional possibilities! The hapless protagonist who drives to the bridge in the morning and chats with the bridge attendant as she waits for a sailboat to glide through. When she comes back at night, and the guy has no idea who she is! This could go on and on.
Sherry: My daughter and I were renting videos in a video store (remember those?) in Shalimar, Florida. Elizabeth was in third grade and as we were checking out, she tugged on my arm and said, “Mom that lady looks like you.” The woman and I looked at each other — we did look like each other! Even stranger her name was Janet as is my sister’s. We also went to the same church, people would often mistake me for her or ask if I was Janet’s sister. We never did find any family connection between the two of us.
Liz: There aren’t too many people with my last name in the world. And there are certainly not a lot of people with the same first and last names. But I happened to find my “name twin” on Facebook – yes, there’s another Elizabeth Mugavero, and she went to the same private high school I did, and lives right near where I grew up. I don’t think she looks like me aside from the same color hair, but it’s still weird!
Jessie: When I was in kindergarten there was a girl named Lisa in my class who also had long dark hair and dark eyes. In some sort of weird psychic-link way our mothers would dress us almost identically every day. The teacher was completely incapable of telling us apart. She called us by each others’ names the entire year and would yell at us when we didn’t answer her.
Julie: My favorite twin story happened around fourteen years ago this month. My sister was expecting her first child. Though she wasn’t due until December, she looked really pregnant really early. We saw my parents on Memorial Day weekend, and my father said “are you having twins?”. She hit him on the arm, and everyone laughed. My sister had changed a half dozen diapers in her life, and the thing she loved most about babies is that they became toddlers. That next week, she went in for an exam, and came by my house. “There are two heartbeats,” was all she could say. She let me listen in while she called my folks. For the first, and perhaps only time in his life, my father was speechless. The best part of the story was the end, when my beloved nieces were born on December 23. We celebrate their half birthday on June 23, my grandmother’s birthday. Looking forward to it!
Barb: Julie–what a beautiful story. I reminds me of another of my favorite true twin stories.
Dinner guest to exhausted mother of twins: “But you knew you were having twins, right?”
Exhausted mother: “Not at conception.”
Edith: I love all these stories! I think my books are astral twins: born on the same day, same year, but otherwise unrelated. I met my astral twin in college in 1971. Nancy Willets was my sister’s roommate at the University of California, Irvine, where I also studied. Nancy was delightful, fun, smart,and both taller and slimmer than me. I’m sorry to say my sister and I have both lost touch with her, though. (Why do women go and change their names when they marry, anyway? It makes it so hard to find them again decades later. But that’s another story.) Actually, lots of people thought my sister Janet and I were twins in those college days – see the picture. And doesn’t it remind you of the Wicked Cozy banner shot? Friends walking and laughing…
Readers: What’s your favorite twin story? Are you one or do you have them in the family? Ever met your astral twin?