18 March 2009

Through the Arch Window

Small Thing was sitting in the back seat of The Antiquer's car. She tossed over a rather uninteresting looking cartoon for me to read to her from her odious Bindi Irwin magazine. Reading stories to kids is one of my least-favourite past-times, and reading a comic strip the dreariest part of it all. Trying to dodge the awful task, I began to summarise the action in the first few panels.

"Well, excuse me," interrupted a Small Voice from behind me, "I did say you had to read it."

Such precision! Her father wants her to become a surgeon, but I think such a nit-picking mind is reserved a special place in the seventh circle of professional hell: the law.

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I was sitting on the verandah at k.'s house when that mop-topped youngster t. came out and announced that he was going to tell me a story, a story about a green ball that rolled down a green hill wrapped in a purple blanket.

"Hit me," I said. [Which, you may be surprised to learn, was my invitation for him to tell the tale and not a request to have punches rained upon my person.]

"Once upon a time there was a green ball and it rolled down a green hill and it was wrapped in a purple blanket."

So, you think to yourself, the little chap isn't quite four - what more can you expect? But wait, there's a twist:

"When it got to the bottom it bumped into a rock and rolled back up the hill."

What this kid doesn't know about narrative suspense and story arcs isn't worth learning.

4 comments:

k said...

there are things that i know about you that i cannot divulge on this blog, that make me absolutely astonished that you can't stand reading to kids!!! What about molding their little minds? Sure it's (no, i never know whether to apostrophe that or not, but i am sure you will enlighten me)..aaaanyway, sure its Bindi Irwin today, but tomorrow, Mein Kampf! or Spike Milligan!

hazelblackberry said...

There are things you know about me that you cannot divulge on this blog?? You shall have to fill me in when I see you tomorrow eve.

As you know, there are many activities in which I love to partake with the small monsters, but reading aloud ain't one of 'em.

Karen said...

Don't leave me in suspense. What happened to the blanket?

k said...

What do you think Karen? the Boy dropped it on the bedroom floor and his mother put it away!