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johnson wilson and the case of the broken baby is a short photo-story in six parts, written and staged by pamela klaffke and her daughter, emma.

©pamela klaffke, all rights reserved


johnson wilson is eight, she is a private investigator. her arch-enemy is the trickster. she goes to discos. she has a dog called trent. she drinks white wine. she has no parents.


I had the left arm of the baby and a clue. The basement window of my townhouse was open and I didn’t leave it open. there were royal blue threads caught on a nail that was sticking out. I investigated the threads and they were definitely from the trickster because they smelled like the trickster. Trent my dog said one time that the trickster smelled like the ’80s and he and shifty thought this was the funniest thing ever, but the trickster got really mad and I didn’t know what they were talking about. But I knew the smell of the trickster and he had been in my rumpus room. He made a mess and didn’t clean it up so I had to, which made me very mad. There were records all over the floor and I investigated until I found that one wasn’t in its sleeve. It was on the turntable with that picture of the trickster he leaves for me when I’m investigating him.

The right arm of the baby was right there on the record. I thought that was a pretty good idea actually, and that maybe one day after the case was solved I could borrow an arm from the baby when it’s my night to dj at the disco and I could use it for scratching on the records. The baby was going to owe me big favours forever – but only after I could find the rest of her parts and put her back together.

I tied the two arms to my belt and took out my magnifying glass. Ah-ha! the trickster wasn’t tricky enough to make sure more threads from his smelly eighties stuffed body weren’t left on the carpet in the rumpus room. There were more blue threads, then red ones and yellow ones and some white ones at the bottom of the stairs. Then I heard footsteps and “hee, hee, hee.” Trickster!

The front door slammed when I reached the top of the stairs. I ran to the door and opened it but the trickster was already driving away in his tiny round car. I looked down at the two arms dangling from my belt and was sad about the baby being in parts and that the trickster probably really hurt her feelings by being so mean.

I got a white wine drink box from the fridge and called trent and shifty on my walkie-talkie. I told them to meet me for a play date at the disco. It was going to be a long night.