Today was wonderful. Banned book. Hot Cocoa. Christmas.
First there was the surprise visit from our wonderful neighbor Mr. Tim who stopped by to bring Sammy a new book – In the Night Kitchen by Maurice Sendak, which makes Sammy’s second banned book (first was Tango Makes Three). Why is it banned or challenged, you ask?
Wikipedia says: “When Mickey (who looks to be about three years old) enters the Night Kitchen, he loses his pajamas and is fully naked in some parts of the story. Critics object to Mickey’s nudity (which depicts not only his buttocks, but also his genitalia. Some also interpret sexual innuendo in the events, with the nudity, free-flowing milky fluids, and giant (allegedly phallic) milk bottle. As a result, the book proved controversial in the United States on its release and has continued to be so. The inclusion of child nudity has been frequently raised as morally problematic; consequently, this book remains on lists of books either challenged or banned.”
More on the book in just a moment.
After dinner, we made hot cocoa, turned on the fireplace, and just for the heck of it listened to Christmas music! We talked about where we should put the Christmas tree as this is our first Christmas in our new house.
After hot cocoa and a little taste of Christmas, Sammy and I read In the Kitchen Night.
So, yes, Mickey is naked in the illustrations and yes you can see his “pee pee”. But you know what? Sammy didn’t even noticed. Actually his response was, “Oh no! He lost his clothes!” and when Mickey went diving into the supposedly phallic bottle of milk, he said, “He’s swimming in milk! That’s so silly!” and giggled.
Especially because he’s been into baking cookies, brownies, and cupcakes lately, he just loved this story. He thought it was silly and fun. And that is all that matters.
Today was wonderful because I got a little taste of Christmas – Mr. Tim showing up kind of like Santa in October, hot cocoa, fire, Christmas music, and a cozy snuggle with my boy to read a banned book.