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San Jose Car Donation Center an Adorable Wonderland

result of a car donation, some rights reserved http://flickr.com/photos/flisspix/40485935/San Jose, CA – If you’ve been feeling sad lately and Prozac’s just not cutting it, put down the pills and head to San Jose to get a glimpse of the most heart-warming display of childhood utopia ever sanctioned by local government. At Kidsville, founder Henry James Adler has decided that, rather than give unneeded to cars to struggling families, the cars should be given directly to the children themselves as homes.

For those of you who feel the tickle in the back of your brain at the name Henry Adler but can’t place the reference, reel your mind back to 1942, the year that Gertrude Warner published The Boxcar Children, the first installment of her opus chronicling the Adler family’s leadership in the Children’s Revolution. Henry, the eldest sibling and natural leader, is now back in the spotlight at 73 and loving every minute of it.

“The work we did all those years back has come to fruition today,” Adler announced at the opening of Kidsville. “The kids don’t need us adults, they’re much better off without us. I think my family and I proved that back in the 40′s and I’m proud to have given the chance to today’s children.”

A tour of Kidsville serves to confirm Adler’s enthusiasm. Located in an abandoned lot right next to a highway, the complex houses several dozen cars, vans and trailers strewn at random. Each vehicle has been decorated, often with local weeds. Three green areas have been constructed: two for self-sustained farming and one for jumping through sprinklers and playing games. The kids mostly fixed a used trampoline and a section has also been reserved for smashing discarded industrial objects for fun. The constant screams of what can only be assumed is laughter testify to a life of pure joy and unadulterated fun.

“It’s fun here,” says Joel Manuel, 12. “I like it.”

Joel says that during the day he can pretty much do whatever he wants. He doesn’t have to go to “stupid school” anymore and enjoys having the chance to turn every whim that comes into his un-reined psyche into a reality. “Yesterday I started a tomato fight in the garden and then we all ate the tomatoes out of each other’s hair just like monkeys,” says Manuel. “It was hilarious.” According to Joel, everyone gets along, “except for Poop, Raisin and Keebler don’t really like Ponygirl and Trisha” because the girls said that Big Bear, Fart-Face and Ryan, close allies of Poop’s crew, are “super annoying.”

While the kids are mostly left to fend for themselves, adult supervision does exist in the form of Adler who lives on the edge of Kidsville in an old boxcar he outfitted himself. Although his days of mowing Dr. Moore’s lawn to make enough cash for his family to survive are long over, his role remains much the same as it was when he moved his brothers and sisters into their original boxcar: serving to protect the group and teach them gentle lessons of self-sufficiency. There is a meeting every morning in which Adler prompts the children to make a list of things that need to happen during the day and divvy up the work.

“San Jose really is an ideal place to rekindle the flame of the Children’s Revolution,” says Adler. “There’s a lot of immigrant families in the Central Valley that are struggling enough to make ends meet that they don’t mind unloading the burden of one or two kids. Obviously the kids love it, and it’s mild enough weather here that they can live outdoors year round. Even when it cold, it’s not so bad that they can’t steal a couple of coats and blankets to stop the shivering at night.”

Although there have been outcries from the ranks of high school English teachers, wondering how everyone could have forgotten Lord of the Flies, most people are in favor of the new community. The mayor says that he is excited to see the youth of San Jose stand up and take responsibility for themselves for once while. Social researchers and intellectuals of all stripes are interested to see how the dynamics of the group will play out over a long period of time. “These kids are basically the most interesting subjects I’ve ever seen,” says economist Rolph Doogly. “I can’t wait to see how a pristine human society will naturally develop a capitalist market of its own.”

Even the parents of Kidsville’s 100 or so children are happy about the situation. They are still able to visit their children whenever they want to and of course can take them home at any point in time.

“It’s a lot like a permanent summer camp you don’t have to pay for,” says parent Hilda Treehorn. “I’m proud my son is growing up like some kind of wild animal and it sure helps to keep our bills down.”

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