Wednesday, October 22, 2008

here's to you, narcoleptic veterans of the world

you may recall that several months ago i wanted to purchase a book on veteran's day and found a review for this tome about a girl who was embarrassed of her narcoleptic veteran grandfather. there was much debate about whether or not this grandfather was narcoleptic, surely i had read the review wrong. it was even suggested that "narcolepsy" was most likely a typo meant to be "nationalism" or "neutrality." well, the book finally arrived and i have read it cover to cover so that i may report back to you, my beloved and devoted blog readers ...

vinni and emily are playing at pop-pop's house. vinni loves to play in leaves, but emily does not. pop-pop points out that people are different and like different things. he chooses veteran's day as an example to prove this (it is, of course, the obvious choice). people celebrate veteran's day in different ways: parades, flags, moments of silence, etc. pop-pop is shocked that the two second graders don't know what veterans are (he should come to library-in-the-hood and see that my 3rd-7th graders don't know what thanksgiving is or independence day). anyway, he is so shocked that his narcolepsy kicks in and he falls asleep on a hammock. while asleep he talks about puppies and honey flavored ice cream. mmmm, honey flavored ice cream.

we then learn a key plot point ... pop-pop was born with narcolepsy. he did not become narcoleptic from his time in the armed forces.

pop-pop is supposed to come into emily's class to talk about veterans, but emily is afraid he will fall asleep and embarrass her. but on class visit day, pop-pop arrives in uniform and wows the crowd. he then explains that although he was in the army he never fought in a war. but he is still considered a veteran.

so not only is his narcolepsy completely unrelated to him being a veteran, he didn't even fight in a war! what the hell is the point of this book?! i feel like kids would be so confused by this. he's a soldier but he never fought in a war. he has a disease, but it's totally unrelated to being a soldier. this man is the softest soldier ever. seriously, why not write a story about a veteran who actually fought in a war and maybe he has to walk with a cane or something because he hurt his foot in battle? at least that would make sense.



*Bitch Cakes* said...

Yeah- that's like the most pointless children's story ever. It's so random. How are kids supposed to learn anything from that?!

rowan said...

wouldn't narcolepsy make him 4-H?
that is a bizarre idea for a story. love your blog, though.

Her Mother said...

what's next-- a Veteran with athlete's foot?

i loved that post- best laugh i've had in a while.

rowan said...

hmmm...i think i mean 4-F. oops.