Thursday, January 17, 2008


You might have heard me lambaste the loose way the phrase "I'm the sort of person who..." is bandied about, as if a single fact gave much insight into the speaker's personality. Of course, the amount of insight is not nil, but the limits of extrapolation are pretty narrow in my opinion, if ill-defined.

For example, knowing me fairly well--in fact, being me--one might suppose that my immaturity, frivolity, and love of magic would lead me to enjoy Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll.

But I didn't. I hated it.

This is contrary to type.

Ugh. There was no *point* to anything that happened; any event could have come before or after any one in the book, as there was nearly zero cause and effect, cemented by the *shocking* ending (don't let me spoil it for you): it was all a dream! I think the poem-parodies would have been funny to me if I'd known the originals that they were parodies *of*, but I'm about 100 years too late to the party and only recognized "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star." I did laugh at that, and the Lobster Quadrille, but maybe that's all. I felt terrible for Bill the lizard, and didn't know why Alice had to be so *awful* to everyone.

Would it surprise you very much to know that, despite my frivolous nature, my favourite children's books were about plucky young girls, often orphans, who struggled in the face of adversity? You just can't trust to sorts!

I am very disappointed in the whole affair. I'm also sorry if *Alice* is your favourite kids' book--I recognize that it is likely some small spot of curmudgeonliness lodged deep in my soul that is causing this reaction. But *Alice* is still going back to the library, pronto!

I keep every single rock / they throw


Kerry said...

I liked the silliness of it, that it was such a stretch of the imagination. I liked that tea was a theme, also. And I loved the Jabberwocky, just because. I am sorry its narrative deficiencies got you down.

Ransermo said...

I didn't read it as a child but enjoyed it in University. It always felt to me like a story a math/english teacher would tell (or a nerd such as myself would tell to amuse a group of children in a canoe).
Did you have the penguin volume that includes the Looking glass as well?