Tag Archives: nursery rhyme

Repeat of Story 154: Mother Goose gives a lesson

(This is the fourth story in a week or so of repeats. “Mother Goose gives a lesson” first appeared on this blog on 13 March 2014.)

Mother Goose sat all the children in a circle on rugs around the fire.

“Let me tell you a Nursery Rhyme,” said Mother Goose kindly.

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Humpty together again.

“I believe,” said five year old Johnny putting up his hand, “that although it’s not explicitly described, Humpty Dumpty is typically portrayed as an anthropomorphic egg. Is this correct?”

“Well aren’t we a big know-all, you swollen-headed little prick,” said Mother Goose. “I don’t give a rat’s ass if Humpty Dumpty was a whatever-type-of-bird’s-egg-that-you-said or not. Go take steroids, you puny little nerdy slug.”

With that, she took the children and gave them some broth without any bread, and whipped them all soundly and sent them to bed. Just to teach them a jolly good lesson.

1395. A spectacular lunar discovery

Daisy Chainey was among the first group of settlers from earth to live on the moon. The group of eight were still reliant on supplies being brought from Mother Earth, but gradually they were working towards being at least a little bit self-supporting. For example, Daisy had a vegetable garden.

Of course it wasn’t a normal vegetable garden; it was under a gigantic human-made dome that created the right conditions for growth. The exciting reality was, however, that the vegetables were being grown in lunar soil (with enhancements).

One day, Daisy was out digging in the dome when she made a huge discovery; she unearthed some bones. It was mind-blowing. The bones were carefully packed and sent back to Earth for investigation.

It didn’t take long for astrophysical palaeontologists to discover what the bones belonged to; they were cow bones. For example, the bovine caudal vertebrae was obvious once pointed out.

“There can be no doubt,” said Dr Stephan Sputnik, “that there were earlier attempts by cows to jump over the moon before one succeeded and the dish ran away with the spoon.”

838. Dear Miss Munyard

838mice

Miss Munyard, although she was called May by her colleagues, was in charge of the little children new to the school. She got the children to form a circle holding hands. They danced around singing:

Three blind mice, three blind mice,
See how they run, see how they run,
They all ran after the farmer’s wife
Who cut off their tails with the carving knife,
Did you ever see such a thing in your life as
Three blind mice?

Dear Miss Munyard,
I was amazed when Nola came home singing Three Blind Mice. The method of numeracy you apparently espouse has no bearing whatsoever on the modern mathematics that should be taught. Three mice is definitive. It’s the working out of the problem that’s important; not the answer. There could have been ten mice. It wouldn’t have mattered.
Zita Codfish

Dear Miss Munyard,
Andrew came home having had bad and dated attitudes towards blindness shoved down his throat. It’s not the way he has been brought up. Making fun of blindness while dancing around in circles is hardly the value we’re trying to instil in our young people.
Maureen and Petros Stifleburg

Dear Miss Munyard,
It’s pedagogical methods such as yours that enhance attitudes toward the world’s creatures that ultimately cause extinction. There’s nothing wrong with mice. People have them as pets. Other people trap them cruelly, or even cut off, as the rhyme Nigel came home singing said, their tails. These attitudes foster violence and lack of caring for our planet. His father gave him a good beating to try and instil better values into him than the ones you promote.
Lorna Bridgewater

Dear Ms Munyard,
That’s right, have the unnamed woman in the ditty Carolynne came home singing, have her stand at the sink and get her identity from her husband. She’s just a “farmer’s wife”. No wonder we haven’t moved on from the emancipation of the 19th century. Try and drag yourself into the 21st century. Or better still; throw yourself under a race horse and liberate a few people.
Melinda Beveridge

Dear May,
Jonathan came home from school on a high. He loves the songs you teach. He especially loved the one about the three blind mice. You certainly know how to relate to children. Jonathan worships you! I wondered if you were free again next Saturday evening?
Harry Wattleworth

789. Sugar and spice

789slugs

Pam had done her doctoral thesis on the influence of nursery rhymes on learned sexist behaviour. Nursery rhymes are a fun way to teach children about music, rhyme and language, but they also imprint an indelible bigotry on the child’s mind. For example, what boy doesn’t know what little girls are made of?

What are little girls made of?
What are little girls made of?
Sugar and spice
And everything nice
That’s what little girls are made of.

How sexist is that? Pam worked for it to be banned from children’s libraries. And behold! she was to give a lecture on this very topic tonight in the local community hall. Cedric thought he’d attend.

He seemed to be the only male in the audience. Everyone sat in a circle. Cedric sat in an empty chair. A woman turned to him.

“How dare you sit there and separate me from my sisters,” she said.

Cedric had nowhere to sit. He sat in a chair outside the circle, over by the wall. A woman turned to him.

“Typical male,” she said, “refusing to be part of the circle. Too scared to join in.”

Cedric rejoined the circle. A woman turned to him.

“How dare you sit there and separate me from my sisters,” she said.

Cedric left.

“Good riddance,” said Pam.

Slugs and snails
And puppy-dog tails
That’s what little boys are made of.

140. Hey Diddle Diddle

140hey

Tommy sat on his porch early evening gazing at the full moon. He thought the moon was like a balloon. Imagine if it popped!

He was feeling satisfied. After three years of intense research, he had at last finished his doctoral thesis. Tomorrow he would hand it in. He would be known as Doctor Thomas! His thesis was on the Origins of Nursery Rhymes.

Suddenly a full-uddered cow came charging past. It jumped! It never made it to the moon! It couldn’t jump over it! The cow’s horns pierced the moon like a balloon. The moon went POP!

“Damn!” thought Tommy, “it’s back to Square One. That cow just stuffed up my doctoral thesis.”