Monday, January 26, 2009

Mrs. Piggle Wiggle

One of the many great things about being a parent is getting to revisit the books you loved when you were a kid. Laney is at an age now where she likes chapter books and doesn't require pictures. So, of late, we've been reading Mrs. Piggle Wiggle.

To the uninitiated, Mrs. Piggle Wiggle is a lady who lives in an upside down house and has much child-rearing wisdom. When their kids are out of control and exhibiting unacceptable behavior, the 1950s Moms call up Mrs. Piggle Wiggle and she mentors them through various cures. Like "The Won't Pick Up Toys Cure" or "The Answer Backer Cure."She's sort of a folksy, fictional, fifties Jo Frost.

Tonight we were reading the "Selfishness Cure," in which a little boy named Dick is cured by having all his things labeled "Dick's Whatever: Don't Touch." Towards the end of the chapter, all the other children are jeering and mocking him (this is how you got cured of unacceptable behavior in the 50s). And this is the paragraph I read to Laney:

Dick's- don't touch! Don't touch Dick! Dick's- don't touch! Don't touch Dick!

Try it. Read it aloud. Imagine reading that aloud to your beautiful, innocent five year old daughter. Folks, I don't think Laney has ever heard me laugh like that. Heaving, can't catch your breath, red-faced guffaws. And Laney is lying next to me, laughing too, but also repeatedly asking "What?!"

I'll tell her when she's older. Don't touch dick.