May 31, 2005

Gratuitous Domestic Posting (TM) - Bedtime Reading Division

charlottes web.jpg

I am currently reading the Llama-ettes Charlotte's Web. I haven't touched this book in years and years and had forgotten just how good it really is. Not only does it tell an entertaining story, it doesn't flinch away from the realities of farm life (i.e., that animals aren't kept about merely for aesthetic purposes). And indeed, I had also forgotten all about the rather bloodthirsty introduction of Charlotte herself - we hit that point last evening and the gels had the same squeemish initial reaction to Charlotte's feasting on the fly as did Wilbur. But I think they got over it.

Another thing I notice is that this book is great for reading aloud at bed time. The chapters are just long enough so that one can be comfortably read each night. And the characters are ready-made for hamming it up - the Llama-ettes think my rendition of the goose ("Listen to me! Listen to me!") is hysterical. My Wilbur is turning into a kind of young Kermit the Frog, while my Charlotte is as calm, cool and collected as Galadriel.

Of course, I anticipate some rather stormy emotions when we hit Charlotte's eventual demise, but I don't think this is a bad thing. I'll let you know how it goes.

Posted by Robert at May 31, 2005 11:05 AM

You must not remember the emotional impact of it. Maybe the saddest ending in all of li-tra-choor. Be prepared for the worst.

E.B. White is an underrated writer -- The Elements of Style that he wrote with Strunk is a classic of how to write in English. Not that I paid any attention.

Posted by: The Colossus at May 31, 2005 11:36 AM

(i.e., that animals aren't kept about merely for aesthetic purposes).

Well sure, you don't jes' look at 'em, you gotta love 'em raight good too.

Posted by: Bill from INDC at May 31, 2005 12:07 PM

Even Templeton, the snarky rat, has his moments of lovability.

Posted by: red at May 31, 2005 01:08 PM

Yes, I'm trying to decide what kind of voice to use for him and thinking, probably, something along the lines of Peter Lorre.

Posted by: Robert the LB at May 31, 2005 01:20 PM

Paul Lynde in the 1973 film.

Steve Buscemi in the 2006 remake.

Posted by: The Colossus at May 31, 2005 02:29 PM

Ya know, I'm not sure if I ever saw the original. I certainly didn't even know there was a remake. Buscemi would be tough to do. Lynde would be easier.

Or how about this: C. Montgomery Burns

Posted by: Robert the LB at May 31, 2005 02:36 PM

Groundskeeper Willie.

Kidding. Burns would work. I'm thinking Buscemi is a little too "Sopranos" for it, but as I note on my site (shameless plug) they're also planning to have Jennifer Garner in it. So go figure.

The original, BTW, is a classic. Rent it for your kids when you're done reading it to them.

Posted by: The Colossus at May 31, 2005 06:07 PM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?