Saturday, July 15, 2006

Hero or despot? Napoleon and the Big Bad Wolf

Share your thoughts on Napoleon while we dissect War and Peace. This novel is turning into quite the history lesson.

I'm still exhausted after having spent Wednesday with Helena and her daycare at Wonderland. A 2-hour round trip on a schoolbus with small children, the noise, the cruel sun, the lameness of it all, the difficulty of seeing it through the eyes of a 3-year-old, being generally overwhelmed not by the task of minding one's own child so much as resisting the smothering effect of the collective energy of so many small children on their own territory and the occasional but harsh intrusion of some ill-mannered parents — it was all worth it to see the sparkle in Helena's eyes when she came face to face with the Big Bad Wolf. I'd consciously left the camera at home so I could be there with her.

Helena has an affinity for the tale of Little Red Riding Hood (my mother will be pleased to know).

So Wednesday we visited Little Red Riding Hood's grandmother's house twice. The wolf is tame now, though he a has a bright pink bandaid plastered across his nose where Red Riding Hood bopped him to put him back in his place. Helena tried unsuccessfully to make him talk, settled for a hug and a kiss and another hug. She'll be talking about this for months.


Martha said...

Is the big bad wolf a statue or a guy in a suit? C encountered a large mouse when her aunt and uncle magnanimously took the kids to hideous Chuckie Cheese, and was both fascinated and terrified. She didn't know there was actually someone in there. In the photo you show an actual Red Riding Hood, so I was wondering if the story was actually played out.

And on another note, are wondering if you are familiar with the writer Angela Carter, who transformed many a fairy tale into something new and mysterious, and who wrote the screenplay for The Comapny of Wolves, a movie taken from the story of Little Red Riding Hood?

Isabella said...

Guy in a suit. Helena's shy with people at first, but she's all over mascots. (We met the White Rabbit, too.) There was no reenactment, but in fielding questions, Red Riding Hood as good as told the whole story.

I've not read any Angela Carter, but keep meaning too. AS Byatt also does some weird takes on fairy tales.