Wednesday, October 08, 2014

The Whale

The selection for this month's book club reading is The Giver, by Lois Lowry. I finished it yesterday and found it to be a highly discussable, good read.

Perhaps it is because of this book, much of which has to do with how important memories are, this morning an ancient memory came back to me and I thought I'd write it down rather than chance forgetting it for ever.

My father's occupation provided our household with what seemed to be a never-ending supply of legal-size paper, plain white on one side, with typewritten lot descriptions (he was a title examiner) on the other. This was long before copying machines, and he also taught me about carbon paper, but that's not part of this memory. This vast supply of paper was probably of interest only to me. "Can I have some coloring paper, Daddy?" I'd ask, and the drawer would open. Sometimes I would ask him what I should draw.

One day he said, "There's a line from a song: 'From the jail came the wail of a down-hearted frail.' Why don't you draw that?" I didn't know what a "frail" was, so I asked, and he told me, "Oh, that's another word for a woman."

So off I went to draw, and because I hadn't read the words, but just heard them, my picture of a skinny, standing woman sharing a barred cell with a great big fish was quite a hit! Google Images doesn't have such a picture, but it doesn't matter, because I can still see that drawing in my memory.


9 comments:

OTquilter said...

Thanks for sharing a good "Daddy memory." I'm glad you like "The Giver," one of my favorites. Lois Lowry rarely disappoints, nor does Blogging, Near Philadelphia.

Barbara Anne said...

What a wonderful memory and I can just see the literal way you took what you heard and drew it! When our boys were small, there was a book titled "The King Rained" and it was full of such ambiguous words that puzzle kids and pictures to go with them. I loved the book as much as the boys did!

Your father was marvelously creative to suggest such an interesting sentence for you to draw!

Hugs!

Quiltdivajulie said...

What a wonderful post to share . . . for so many reasons.

Janet O. said...

Sounds like a book I need to "check out". : )
I've enjoyed several of her other works, but never read this one.
Love your story! What an interesting line for your father to suggest you illustrate.
The book Barbara Anne mentioned was a favorite here, too.
Makes me think of a time my FIL took my then 4-y-o daughter to where he worked in the breeding department at the local university dairy herd. She came home and told us about the really big "plate" they had there! (Bull/bowl, which in her mind had translated to a plate) : )

Karla said...

Still chuckling over the image you drew in my head. Hope to hold onto that chuckle as my day progresses.

I will add The Giver to my book list. For some reason I am having a hard time reading. I love to read, but for some reason lately I have been having a hard time doing it. Right now I am reading Life of Pi. Beginning and I am loving it, but just can't seem to pick it up. Perhaps this weekend.

I have a reading suggestion. The Heart of Applebutter Hill bu Donna W. Weiss. It is young adult, took me sometime to get into it, but once I did, I loved it and was sad it was done. I would like to get that book to be mandatory reading in Jr High.

Anonymous said...

If you enjoyed The Giver, please read the 4th book in the series, Son. The second and third books aren't that good, but Son is also good food for thought.
Mary O'Neil

Nann said...


Has anyone in your book group seen the movie version which was released earlier this year.

I liked your story, Nancy. My dad was an engineer. His paper-of-profession was quadrille-ruled graph paper. He used it for writing everything from technical articles to thank you notes.

Nann said...

Add us to the list of those who enjoyed The King Who Rained. We have a copy in the bookcase. There is a sequel ( or prequel ), Chocolate Moose for Dinner. Both are by Fred Gwynne, the actor known for his role as Herman Munster.

desertskyquilts said...

What a great memory! I love Lois Lowry's books. I was working with some of the group's donated blocks again today. =)