Monday, July 31, 2006

Red is best, or it used to be

Five-year-olds are moralists.

Crayons had been bugging me to get Kathy Stinson's picture book Red is Best from the library. (It had been awhile since we'd read it.) I saw a copy at a book sale on the weekend and brought it home.

Unfortunately, she doesn't get it any more.

The book starts, "My Mom doesn't understand about red. I like my red stockings best. My Mom says, 'Wear these. Your white stockings look good with that dress.' But I can jump higher in my red stockings. I like my red stockings best." The drawing shows a child of about three admiring herself in red stockings.

"She put them on when her mother told her not to?" asks my angelic five-year-old. "Did she DISOBEY?"

Well, yes.

The child in the story goes on to insist on wearing her red pajamas, red boots, red mittens (even though they have holes in them), and so on. She wants to wear her red barrettes, because "red barrettes make my hair laugh."

"She LIED, then," says my too-wise five-year-old. (Because anybody would know that barrettes do not make your hair laugh.)

Well, yes.

How can I condone the criminal activities of this fictional preschooler?

I guess Red is Best will go back on the shelf until Crayons is old enough--once again--to enjoy it.


Krakovianka said...

I'm giggling. That literal age is so fun. All the ages are fun. Maybe even two...

Mother Auma said...

Those are exactly the things my five year old would say! (not angelic, though~ just very good at pointing out the sin of others...)

.H said...

Such a cute story! This made me smile. I used to read Red is Best when I was about 5:00...oddly enough neither of these moral high ground thoughts occurred to me.

Very cute!

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