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Location: Viljandi, Estonia

Saturday, May 26, 2007


The first words Marta said to me today were "go away". I walked into the bedroom to announce that I was making eggs for breakfast and I was greeted with "go away". Somehow I don't mind it too much though. I just sort of accept that my daughter can be a little nasty and pay it no mind. But inside it kind of sucks.

We walked through town because there is a cycling rally today and most of the streets are closed off. Marta has really been into pirates recently. She's been talking about them. I think what happened is that the new Pirates of the Caribbean film came out and the little ones in pre-school are jabbering on about Captain Jack Sparrow.

I wouldn't dare take her though. Too scary. Ditto for Harry Potter. I am not as enthusiastic as some of the parents of the 90s with my filtering of popular culture (remember the v chip?) but I still like to keep my kid away from scary things. That is ultimately done out of benefit for me so that she doesn't get nightmares and wake me up in the middle of the night. See -- good parenting is born out of self-interest.

But when Marta wanted to buy a red Pippi Longstocking wig and a Pippi DVD at the store today, I couldn't really say no. I think it's good to encourage her enjoyment of 1970s Swedish children's television and a heroine that doesn't dress in sleazy costumes (like so many things designed for little girls) and doesn't have sinister undertones, like Harry Potter.

So Marta today is Pippi and, wouldn't you know, the Pippi movie is about her adventures on the south seas with pirates! Perfect. As a sidenote, the woman who illustrated a lot of Astrid Lindgren's books, but not Pippi. was born right here in Tartu.

You can read the interview with Ilon Wikland, who was born here 77 years ago and fled to Sweden at the age of 14 in 1944, here. She is also the author of her own book, interestingly called "Sammali, Epp, and Me."


Blogger Nicholas said...

I watched Pirates Of The Caribbean today and there are themes and scenes that'd need plenty of explaining to a small child. And it's a continuation of the first 2 movies in the series. That's triple the trouble.

8:42 AM  
Blogger Martasmimi said...

Dad and I saw Pirates on opening night.
We would have made you proud(?)
We were two of 8 people in the theater that were "older" and were were the oldest of that group.
The theater was packed with 20 somethings with eye patches & head scarfs.
It was a true "happening".
Marta has plenty of time in the future for these type movies. For now Pippi, Madeline,Curious George
and even her princess books and
DVD's are far better suited for her at this age...

11:02 AM  
Blogger somebody said...

Vahelduseks kirjutan (vigases) Eesti keeles...

Minu kaheaastane õetütrega juhtub täpselt niimoodi. Kahe nädala jooksul ta ütles mulle "¡vete!", mis loomulikult tähendab "mine ära!". Miks? Ja miks ainult minule? Ja kuidas üldse reageerida? Ma ei tea. Õnneks ta kunagi unustas seda öelda :)

5:45 AM  
Blogger Juan Manuel said...

By the way, I changed my nickname (somebody) to my real name (Juan Manuel). I should now appear as Juan Manuel in my comments.

5:56 AM  
Blogger Leeloo said...

As a sidenote, the woman who illustrated the Pippi Longstocking books, creating the iconic image of the girl with red braids, was born right here in Tartu.

Actually, that's not true. The illustrator of the Pippi Longstocking books was Ingrid Vang-Nyman, not Ilon Wikland who was born in Tartu mere 14 years before the first Pippi book came out. Ingrid Vang-Nyman was born in Denmark.

9:52 AM  
Blogger Giustino said...

Once again I prove myself to be an idiot. Sorry.

5:07 AM  

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