Thursday, September 24, 2009

What You Never Knew About Nuns, Nonsense and Napkins

There is a series of humorous easy nonfiction books by Patrica Lauber that Lucia currently enjoys. The three titles available so far are: What You Never Knew About Beds, Bedrooms and Pajamas, What You Never Knew About Fingers, Forks and Chopsticks and What You Never Knew About Tubs, Toilets and Showers.

Lucia was inspired to "write" her own book: What You Never Knew About Nuns, Nonsense and Napkins. Ever since The Sound of Music, Lucia has been fascinated by nuns (in particular, their clothing). She told us the story a couple of days ago, and yesterday, I filmed it for her. I'll be the first to admit that making little videos is a grownup realization of a childhood desire. When I was Lucia's age, I had lots of stories in my head, but when it came to writing them down, I would get stymied and end the story early by making everyone quickly live happily ever after until they died. By the time my first younger brother was telling stories, we captured our creative output with an audio cassette recorder. We didn't think to keep them, as the whole point was the process of recording radio shows. The technology we have now is the kind that my brother and I dreamed of having when we were children.

I'm uploading to my Facebook account the video I shot and edited of Lucia reading her book. I will share the text (i.e. my transcription) here:

What You Never Knew About Nuns, Nonsense and Napkins
By Lucia

The First Nuns’ Outfits

Back in the time when there were no habits, nuns’ outfits were just a plain old skirt and a plain old top. But there was a nice old woman named Christiana and they called her the first Mother Superior. And then she made something. That she made two of it, and put one in the museum and put one on, and looked into the mirror and smiled. It was the first habit.

Now the Nonsense Part!

Once there was a land where everyone were serious. There were no knock-knock jokes in the world yet. There was a little girl, and her brother said:

Brother: Knock Knock!
Sister: Who’s there?
Brother: Banana.
Sister: Banana who?
Brother: Knock knock!
Sister: Who’s there?
Brother: Banana.
Sister: Banana who?
Brother: Knock knock!
Sister: Who’s there?
Brother: Orange.
Sister: Orange who?
Brother: Orange you glad I didn’t say banana?

[Lucia laughs.] Then the little boy laughed. Then everyone started copying the girl with more other knock-knock jokes. That was how nonsense was invented.


One day, they said, “Here, here’s something you made for me. Thank you, thank you,” said the Mother Superior, said Christiana.

“You’re welcome,” said the postulant.

“What are they for?” [said the postulant] said the Mother Superior.

“They’re for putting your lap when food is going to get into your lap,” said the postulant.

That’s the end of part one!

Part two is a discussion among the nuns about how they have fallen in love with the pope but how popes and nuns can’t get married, so they’ll have to be friends. Part two was narrated once but never made it to video in its original form.


tanita davis said...

My niece spent many days holed up in her room with a plain old tape recorder, making her "radio" shows. We were positive she was going to be a DJ, and now she's a college sophomore doing graphic design... who knew!?

We had the technology, when Fal was little, but she enjoyed doing it herself much more. Eventually, Lu will be doing her own podcasts. :D Can't wait, huh?

Lone Star Ma said...

Postulants, huh? Wow.

Saints and Spinners said...

Tanita: That's pretty cool! I think tape recorders (or some inexpensive facsimile) should stick around just for that reason.

LoneStarMa: After The Sound of Music, we read Demi's biography of Mother Theresa, which was one of the few books about nuns for children I could find. I think that's where she learned about postulants.

Charlotte said...

How fun is that! I like the museum bit best.