Thursday, July 1, 2010

Little Monster at Work

Little Monster at Work
Mercer Mayer ~ Merrigold Press, 1978


We are on the dirty side of the hurricane this morning, and as the boy and I sat on the couch, reading and watching the rain fall, I came across this image that made me both giggle and gag. (Mercer Mayer has a tendency to do that sometimes.) So, in celebration of one of my favorite childhood illustrators and to perhaps help remind you guys (like you needed to be) that the Gulf Coast is still in peril....

"Now, don't you spill any."

While some argue that cleaning the oil-soaked wildlife is futile, I still think it's better than nothing and at least gives the animals a chance of survival. I have been moved by this Project 8 that Craft Hope put together, collecting rags and dishwashing liquid to help volunteers with the animal clean-up. The project runs until the end of August and is the perfect way to get your little ones (or big ones) involved in the mucky muck going on down there.

The whole mess is heartbreaking and a clear wake up call that something has to change in this world or we are basically all screwed. Maybe not tomorrow. Maybe not next year. Maybe not even in our lifetime. But take a look at your kids. Your grandkids. Your great grandkids. They are the ones that will be walking The Road someday. I know we come here to talk about nostalgia and great books and illustrations, but I also like to think that we are a part of the collective recycling community. Taking what is old and making it useful again. Cherishing what we already have rather than spoiling the Earth with all things new. Take small steps. Walk to the park instead of drive. If you need a storage tub, head to the Goodwill rather than the Target. If you order takeout, tell them to leave the condiments behind.

They sound like small, insignificant things, but collectively they make a difference. Each baby step of change in our behavior gets us closer to turning the water off while we brush our teeth. Allows the Earth to prosper for a few more years. Means that generations from now, our children's children will be able to enjoy a clear ocean, a trickling mountain stream, and air that doesn't poison their souls.... Anywho, off the upcycled soap box. Sigh. At the very least, go out and pick up a previously-loved book, and imagine what your little monsters are gonna be when they grow up? Mother Nature will thank you.

Also by:
Liza Lou and the Yeller Belly Swamp
One Monster After Another
Professor Wormbog in Search for the Zipperump-A-Zoo
Me and My Flying Machine
Beauty and the Beast
A Special Trick
Bubble Bubble
OOPS
One Frog Too Many
How the Trollusk Got His Hat

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5 comments:

Catherine @ Reading In Montana said...

Thank you! I loved this blog post. As a used bookseller I also "like to think that we are a part of the collective recycling community. Taking what is old and making it useful again. Cherishing what we already have rather than spoiling the Earth with all things new." Thanks for saying it so beautifully!

Diandra Mae said...

Mercer Mayer is a long time favorite. I LOVE his Little Monster books, and hope to pass them on to my kids. My son really enjoys finding the little spiders, etc. hiding in the books.

As I live on the coast (1/2 hr fm Galveston), the oil spill breaks my heart. Have you heard about the Ripple blog? (ripplesketches.blogspot.com) Kelly has got some great American Children's Illustrators donating work all through July. Tom Warburton goes up tonight. :)

Scribbler said...

Great site! Thanks for sharing....

Antmusic said...

Very sad situation on the Gulf. I used to live in Biloxi while I was in the military. The whole thing depresses me.

Thanks for spreading that love of Mercer Mayer though! I just preordered his next 5 books on Amazon, including "Just a Green Green Garden." They are all Little Critter, but he has to feed his family, and my kids like Little Critter too.

Allison said...

I have been trying to track this book down for years. I am so happy you had images of the inside because now I know the title of the book I loved so much as a little girl!

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