The first town I remember living in was Sicklerville, New Jersey. That was the closest thing I ever came to the quintessential suburban experience- I lived in a house with both of my parents, who were married to each other. There was a backyard, fenced in, a large dad-built deck enclosed within it. I remember my brother jumping the fences, and I did it once or twice myself, albeit with more difficulty.
The last time I passed through Sicklerville, it was gross. Just on some level- some psychogeography or whatever. I felt sick, unpleasant. There's a chapter of From Hell about Whitechapel being designed as this horrible occult place, all the churches forming a pentagram, and how that affects the people that live there. That kind of feeling.
Last night I talked about this with my brother- He pointed out that one of his friend's dads was a taxidermist, and I pointed out that one of his friend's dads was also found out to be a child molestor.
We didn't talk about my actual dad, who was basically serving as his dad at the time, and his mostly normal tendencies- porn half-hidden, late nights at strip clubs.
The house was located in a development, and the street that was in front of our house ran parallel to a highway, which was audible, and visible through a patch of trees. That road, according to Mike, was the expressway to Atlantic City. Which is a horrible depressing place in its own right.
What's funny about this horrible sketch is that Mike and I were both happy there, in this weird oblivious danger. Mike sledded down that hill that led towards the highway, as it tipped up at the end and there was no real danger of actually finding oneself on it. I remember the fence-jumping, the climbing beneath the deck, trick-or-treating.
I reread The Eaters again- That's probably one of my favorite comics. When I first heard about it, I was horrified. I was in like fifth or sixth grade, and it's a comic about a family of cannibals. Later I'd get into the writer, Peter Milligan, and track it down. I read it compulsively, but didn't consciously process it as being good until afterwards. It's a dark comedy. The most reading, I read it and actually laughed while reading it. I just like it more and more each time.
My mom has a subscription to Us Weekly these days.