Flora: Was Edgar Allan Poe a real person?
Jane: What? Yes, of course.
Flora: And he really wrote The Raven?
Flora: And his real name really was Edgar Allan Poe?
Jane: Yes. Well, he was born Edgar Poe, but then he was sort-of-adopted by a family called Allan, and so he became Edgar Allan Poe…
Flora: That’s just brilliant. He’s so lucky. Because suppose he had been named Edgar Steve Poe? Or Edgar Smith Poe? He’d never have written The Raven then. No way.
Flora: Yes. Only someone with a cool name like Edgar Allan Poe could have written The Raven. Edgar Steve Smith Poe would have written… The Pigeon.
With apologies to Steve Smiths… everywhere…
Flora: Was Charles Dickens a real person?
Flora: Was Charles Dickens a real person? A real writer?
Jane: Yes. He wrote… David Copperfield, which is so good. And of course, A Christmas Carol. And The Bleak House, and Nicholas Nickleby, and…
Flora: OK, so Charles Dickens is like Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Not like Sherlock Holmes.
Jane: Yes. Sherlock Holmes was not a real person—he was a character created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.
Flora: It’s important to get these things straight.
Gods, I love her.
Flora: So Agatha Christie was a real person.
Flora: But The Doctor is not a real person.
Jane: No. I mean, yes, he is not a real person.
Flora: But Matt Smith is a real person. And so is David Tennant.
Flora: Two different real people, playing the same character.
Jane: Yes. Well, actually—what, 12? 13 different people playing the same character over 50 years…
Flora: Why is all of this so confusing?
Because… life. Art. Authors. Characters. Creators. Creations.
Yes, she’s watching The Wasp and The Unicorn, and The Day of the Doctor. Simultaneously. Reading Sherlock Holmes (graphic novel version, adapted by Ian Edginton, and illustrated by I.N.J. Culbard—brilliant). I’m not quite sure from where Charles Dickens makes an appearance. I ask. “Horrible Histories.” Of course.
PS “Well, this is all very nice interesting, but I’m here looking for that interview tips for kids video that’s part of the Sunnyside YYC Flood Scrap Book Project.”
“Are you? Thrilled. That’s this here: Filing, flooding, interviewing—or, ‘Confluence.’ Our kids and the film crew will be at the Hillhurst-Sunnyhill Farmers’ Market today interviewing. If you’re a YYC reader: come tell your story.”
Adorbs. In Steven Pinker’s The Stuff of Thought he talks about whether Shakespeare was actually really the author of Shakespeare’s plays, and ultimately concludes it doesn’t matter — there is a person whom we refer to as “Shakespeare” and we agree these plays came from that person, whether it was the actual guy or someone else…. OK this makes no sense but it’s what this post made me think of!
Awesome. I love to make you think.
Loved. Love love love when kids ask such intelligent questions. And also how their minds work. Could we have loved The Pigeon so much?
It would have been an entirely different poem. 🙂
For all of the Steven Smiths in the world “I would SO read the Pigeon!”
Only a guy named Mo Willems could have written Don’t Let The Pigeon Drive The Bus. Edgar Allan Poe would have written The Magpie on the Fence Wants to Poke Your Eyes Out…
Ok, so what IS it with you American’s and your refusal to let the pigeon drive the bus eh? I thought that you were all for equal rights? We Aussies have no problems allowing our native animals to take control of the wheel, especially when we have had “a skin full”…wouldn’t be doing to drive drunk now and needs must…we are teaching Earl to drive for just such an occasion. The magpie on our fence wants to hightail it out of hear because he heard about how Earl, the king of the dogs, plucked a rooster from the fence and plucked it’s nether regions (not once…but twice…roosters be STUPID creatures) and as magpies are NOT stupid, we tend not to get them sitting for any period of time on our fences, let alone long enough to poke out eyes…dive-bombing cyclists, yet (but I am with them on that aside…if I could fly I would be hiding up in pine trees just waiting for pods of them to ride by hogging the road and MAN would they fear the terror from above! 😉 )
Not a Yank, ma’ dear. Assumptions, assumptions.
Life is a tangle of assumptions just waiting to be exposed and shoved into another box ma’am…we spend our lives unpacking, discarding and repacking our assumption boxes. Maybe someone could tell us on Pinterest how to at least make the outside of them pretty? 😉
I love how we never know what our kids are thinking behind the books. How they make the leaps and connections that make the world make sense to only them.
Thank you, thank you for this post, only in part because now I must go back and read The Pigeon by Patrick Suskind. Which I swear I may never have re-called at this moment if not for this!
…and I have to add, as I am looking it up, it is also attracting comparisons to Edgar Allen Poe!
Oh, yes, how have I not heard of this book? On the reading list. Here, beloveds: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2899.The_Pigeon