Sunday, September 18, 2011

How to tell The Boring Story

My youngest was asking me for a story as we wandered through Austin yesterday, spending eight long hours scouring the city for wedding clothes. I shouldn't complain too much: I had my first Orange Julius in years. And the pretzel was nice. But it was also my first mall visit in a long time, and I try to avoid those.

So she wanted a story, and I set about telling her The Boring Story.

My Boring Story was about a girl who lived in a Boring house where nothing much happened, where she was left all alone all day by her parents, except that she had a nanny who was a very tall fellow with long limbs. It wasn't long, despite how Boring the town was, before she was swept up in an adventure, her nanny showing up one morning in full chain armor, with a huge club, and carrying her off to visit a wizard.

At six years old, my youngest was able to figure out that the more I said things were boring, the more crazy they were likely to get. But she wasn't old enough to get tired of that joke. She'd keep asking me for more and I'd keep saying "Why? It's such a boring story, I don't know why you'd want to hear more. But it's true that while they were visiting the wizard, he twiddled his fingers and a cloud flew out of a hole near the ceiling and floated down to her, and it was carrying a bowl of pink stuff, and the pink stuff turned out to be ice cream."

And so on. So far the nanny, whose name is Cranston, has run off with the wizard to fight a dragon and some warriors in black armor, while the girl stayed back at the wizard's tower and watched the action in a crystal ball. The Boring story helped my girl cope with trying on clothes and waiting for her mom and sister rather well.

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