Thursday, January 14, 2010

Now and Then

Do you see that? Ramona has been brought into the thousands. She certainly did not look like that when I was eating up every Ramona book I could get my hands on in elementary school. I knew exactly where she housed herself in the JC library. Up the ramp, through the door, hang a left, go past the desk, turn a paperback spinner, hit the aisle closest to the back wall, and on the bottom shelf. There she was. Ramona Quimby. Ramona Quimby - age 8. Beezus and Ramona. Heaven...yup...heaven. When I received my own Ramona books to pour over, shoot, you couldn't pull me from the couch. I. was. reading.

But I dunno...I didn't look like this Ramona. This new Ramona, all cool, kind, and with it. In fact, I'm not sure this picture would have lured me into the Ramona books and all her antics.

I related more with....well....this Ramona...

Look at that hair. Look at that face. That is Ramona. That is the Ramona that misunderstood her parents' swat with the spatula in the kitchen. That is the Ramona that tried to get her dad to stop smoking, wiped her sweater across her nose instead of getting a kleenex. I don't know if that Ramona up there in the pretty red sweater would be seen running her sleeve across her snotty nose. I don't know if that Ramona even produces snot.

I want Ramona to be in the lives of my kids. I want them to laugh at her, cry with her, and get frustrated at her parents with her - because she doesn't want to be nice to Willa Jean. I want my kids to see that Ramona and Beezus yell at each other, but they love each other too. I want them to see that Ramona's parents aren't perfect people - they make mistakes, but they love their kids and they are real. So, so, real.

Paint me nostalgic, but somethings are okay to leave in the imperfect stage. Somethings are okay to be, well, static- y like Ramona's hair...

Drew hasn't started on Ramona books yet, but he reads the new girl in town, oh yeah, you know who I'm talkin' about:

Junie B. Jones. Now look at that girl! She has some fly-aways! She is called a cheater pants. She says that May stinks. She gets caught in school because she hides in the closet. She is a rascal. She and Ramona? I bet would be BFFs if they were in the same decade - or same book.

I know time marches on and I need to join the band, blah, blah, blah, but really? There are something about the covers of my old books. My books that are spine broken, cover bent, and worn that make me warm inside. I related to Ramona, as, I'm sure, Drew relates to Junie B. And, with respect to the mama bear stuff, I should just let my Ramona books go...but maybe I'll start reading them to Drew....tonight.


Heather said...

I loved Ramona too. I like the old covers better. Thank goodness I still have some of my Ramona books too. Sometimes I find them at Goodwill too. :)

Anonymous said...

The Ramona books were my favorite as a girl. My kids are now enjoying my old copies.

Tim said...

Junie B Jones are a great read!