Wednesday, March 11, 2009

I would never have nicknamed my husband "Manly".

I'm on a Little House kick again.

Having just finished "Little House on the Prairie" and opened "The Long Winter" (when you've read them as many times as I have, chronology be damned) I feel it's important to say that I would have lasted about 7 seconds on the frontier. Jesus, the sunburns alone would have done me in! But imagine it - gutting chickens and hauling wood and sleeping on straw and sewing sheets and getting malaria while caring for 3 children under 8... WHILE WEARING A CORSET?

Nope. Never would've lasted.

What amazes me is the fact that there was no garbage. Nothing was processed or motorized. Granted, Pa had to build a log cabin by himself (chopping the trees down! Hauling the logs! STACKING THEM, for crying out loud! All by himself!) but how amazing would it be to go back in time and see the world like that? (Assuming you could trot back to the Delorian before the Indians spotted you.) Needless to say, I am fascinated by Ma. So calm and gentle and only occasionally grumpy. (Granted, Baby Carrie spent her days being "minded" by a 6 and 8-year-old...) You know who I would've been in those books?

Oh who am I kidding. We ALL know who I would have been.

I'd like to state for the record that I think Nellie Oleson gets a bad rap. Sure she's bitchy and flirty and afraid of horses. Who isn't? (Okay, so maybe YOU aren't, but I ain't too proud to say that if it came down to a choice between living in town in a snug little house with nice dresses and store boughten windows and babies that had access to Doc regularly, versus a claim shanty out in the middle of nothing with only the Bible and some prairie chickens for company - that I then had to slaughter while wearing crinolines - I'm going with A.) I think she just knows which side her bread is buttered.

I suspect this is not the moral Laura was trying to instill with her stories...


Lord Rob said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Lord Rob said...

Holy crap Ma is SUPER hot and I just joined thank you very much!

Also your husband is manly! The gnomes he plays in D&D and World of Warcraft are very manly too! They are tattooed, have hot boyfriends, and drink dewdrops RIGHT FROM THE DAFFODIL, MUTHA EFFAS!

Colleen said...

I'm currently reading Little House on the Prairie to the girls at bedtime, and I too have read them many many times over. As an adult, my perspective is so much different. Now when I read them, I'm thinking "why the heck did they leave the Big Woods where they had plenty of meat, fruits, vegetables, cheese, butter, and FAMILY nearby to move to the plains where they had nothing much besides cornmeal, salt pork and the occasional jack rabbit?" Not to mention no neighbors.

I think they were incredibly brave people. I wouldn't have lasted two minutes on the frontier. The whole idea of just picking a spot on the prairie to live with the nearest town sixty miles away just boggles my mind. I like knowing people are around. All those times when Pa leaves, I'm thinking about what would have happened to Ma and the rest of them if he didn't come back. In a time before life insurance and plentiful careers for women, what would they do to survive? Yikes.

elisava said...

i am another little house long time fiend. i have also wondered how they would have done it. i think a) they all went to bed at like 6 pm and woke up at 4 am , and everydamn one had a job to do and b) you never see carrie or even grace "fussy", they are either eating nicely in their chairs, running around outside chasing chickens, or SLEEPING AT THE FOOT OF MA AND PA'S BED. i would like to repeat that again in more big letters, so please read that again.
i remember being under a weight of PPD and watching little house and wondering how this was all possible, hen i couldn't even get myself up to take a shower. my thought: it is a lie. you know that caroline whipped those kids around the yard like a jumprope. and charles was probably sleeping in the barn with his "woodworking" half the time he wasn't knocking her up.
damn, i'm such a pessimist. sorry. it really is an enchanting series.
hey, do you remember the one with the dead girl's doll in a well? or am i thinking of an entirely different story?