Emma loves books. All day long she wants us to read books to her. For the most part, I find most of these children books pretty entertaining. Goodnight, Moon is a classic. I love to Pat the Bunny. Goodnight, Gorilla is pretty funny. And Maus is just plain fun for the whole family.
But there is this one book that I can't stand to read. It's called Good Night, Maine. Pediatric Intensive Care Nurse Auntie Susan bought this book for the kids when they visited the East Coast. It was very nice of her to buy the book for the kids, but damn if it doesn't bore me to death.
Let me share my pain with you and take you page by page through the book:
Page 1/2: Good morning, Atlantic Ocean. Are we ready to share a wonderful day? Good morning, fisherman. Good morning, whales' tales, rising out of the waves.
First of all, opening up the book with "good morning" when the book's title is "Good Night Maine" reinforces the rip-off association with actual classic titles like "Good Night Moon." Secondly, the illustration makes it look like the fisherman just killed the whales. Good eats.
Page 3/4: Good morning, seagulls, squawking above the crashing surf. Good morning, Acadia National Park.
What's odd about the illustration here is that along the rocks where the waves are crashing are two little kids. The kids are just smiling away sitting on the ledge awaiting their unfortunate fall into the ocean. Time to say, "Good morning, vultures."
Page 5/6: Hello, black bears and butterfly. Aren't wild blueberries tasty?
That's right, children. When visiting Maine, don't only say hello to butterflies, but also say hello to our wild bears. They're equally harmless.
Page 7/8: Hello, lobsters. Isn't it cold down there on the ocean floor?
Hey, lobsters? What's that on the ocean floor? Hundreds of copies of the book "Good Night Maine"?
Page 9/10: Ride the river, rafters, kayakers, and canoeists!
Doesn't that sentence seem weird? When in Maine, ride our rivers AS WELL as rafters, kayakers, and canoeists. So jump in the river and while you're at it, hump a canoeist.
Page 11/12: Ahoy there, boats, sailing around Maine's lovely islands. Good day to you, children and beach, sand castle and seashells.
I once knew a woman named Maine who also had lovely islands.
Page 13/14: Hello, great Maine woods. Hello, lumberjack. Good evening, loons and lake. Good evening, autumn sunset.
There's an illustration of the gayest lumberjack ever. He has a gigantic phallic axe over his shoulder. Might as well have put the axe in his mouth.
Page 15/16: Hello, moose and country road. Be careful of the car!
Doesn't this page imply that the car is about to hit the moose? For instance, let's rewrite this passage differently: Hello, homeless man and train tracks. Be careful of the train!
Page 17/18: Good night, starlight and moonshine, sparkling above Mount Katahdin. Sleep tight puffins. Sleep tight, seals. Isn't it cozy to snuggle with your family?
Page seventeen and finally a good night. Instead of clubbing the seals, could you please club me instead?
Page 19/20: It's nice to meet you, people, pets, and village. Good night. Shine bright all night, lighthouse. Good night, Maine. Thank you for sharing a wonderful day.
(This is where Scott tries to slit his wrists.)
Okay. Maybe it might not sound that awful to you, but to say aloud things like Acadia National Park and Mount Katahdin to a sixteen month year old girl is just strange to me. I'll keep on playing along with Emma and read the book to her as long as she wants. But I'm getting very nervous right now because I just found out that Pediatric Intensive Care Nurse Auntie Susan is about to visit Vermont, Kansas, and Wisconsin.