Thursday, October 05, 2006

Noisy Nora

This is currently C's favorite book. I picked it up on a whim because we have some board books by Rosemary Wells, and we like the illustrations. The story of Noisy Nora is told in sing-songy verse and C. is enamored of the whole thing.

There was one little problem with the story, however, that prevented me from wanting to read it over and over and over again (the usual toddler plan for reading books). Nora is a middle child feeling a bit neglected, and she makes a lot of noise to get attention. A couple of lines, repeated twice in the story, go like this:

"Quiet!" said her father.
"Hush," said her mum.
"Nora," said her sister,
"Why are you so dumb?"

Now, my children are far from saints and they have and occasionally still do call each other things worse even than "dumb." But I don't want to be encouraging it, and I was cringing every time I read the story, wondering how I could lose the book without causing C. any grief.

Krakovian came to the rescue, first by coming up with an alternative rhyme, and second by matching the text font and size and printing new words, which he carefully pasted over the offending ones. The story now reads:

"Quiet!" said her mother.
"Hush!" said her dad.
"Nora," said her sister,
"Why are you so bad?"

I still don't love it, but at least "bad" is an evaluation of Nora's behavior (which does involve slamming doors, knocking over lamps and chairs, and taking her siblings' belongings) rather than gratuitous name-calling. So I can live with it.

Although I still absolutely refuse to read it more than three times at a single sitting.


At 9:55 AM , Blogger Lady Liberty said...

Glad you found something.
I hate when books have lines like this. You read a book more than once per sitting. You are such a good mom.

At 3:30 AM , Blogger Sherry said...

Please come add your Noisy Nora thoughts to my Saturday Review of Books tomorrow morning.

I find books like this one, too, sometimes, but I have more trouble with the ones that my little ones latch on to for some reason that I think are pure drivel. Torture reading!

At 5:43 AM , Blogger Tim's Mom said...

"Bad" is much more acceptable than "dumb." That was a brilliant solution!


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