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The Little Red Hen
Old 12-09-2007, 10:41 AM   #1
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The Little Red Hen

Who remembers this story? I used to read this Golden Book and a few other books repeatedly in my pre-school era. I wonder how much this early experience has influenced my life. I suspect that it has a lot to do with how I behave and view the world now.


(A Golden Book, New York) Western Publishing Company, Inc, Racine, WI 53404
Once there was a Little Red Hen who lived in a barnyard with her three chicks and a duck, a pig and a cat.
One day the Little Red Hen found some grains of wheat. "Look look!" she clucked. "Who will help me plant this wheat?"
"Not I", quaked the duck, and he waddled away.
"Not I", oinked the pig, and he trotted away.
"Not I, meowed the cat, and he padded away.
"Then I will plant it myself," said the Little Red Hen. And she did.
When the wheat was tall and golden, the Little Red Hen knew it was ready to be cut. "Who will help me cut the wheat?" she asked.
"Not I," said the duck.
"Not I," said the pig.
"Not I," said the cat
"Then I will cut this wheat myself". And she did.
"Now", said the Little Red Hen, "it is time to take the wheat to the miller so he can grind it into flour. Who will help me?"
"Not I," said the duck.
"Not I," said the pig.
"Not I," said the cat.
"Then I will take the wheat to the miller myself," said the Little Red Hen. And she did.
The miller ground the wheat into fine white flour and put it into a sack for the Little Red Hen.
When she returned to the barnyard, the Little Red Hen asked, "Who will help me make this flour into dough?"
Not I," said the duck, the pig and the cat all at once.
"Then I will make the dough myself," said the Little Red Hen. And she did.
When the dough was rready to go into the oven, the Little Red Hen asked, "Who will help me bake the bread?"
"Not I," said the duck.
"Not I," said the pig.
"Not I," said the cat.
"Then I wll bake it myself," said the Little Red Hen. And she did.
Soon the bread was ready. As she took it from the oven, the Little Red Hen asked, "Well who wil help me eat this warm, fresh bread?"
"I will," said the duck.
"I will," said the pig.
"I will," said the cat.
"No you won't," said the Little Red Hen. "You wouldn't help me plant the seeds, cut the wheat, go to the miller, make the dough or bake the bread. Now, my three chicks and I will eat this bread ourselves!"
And that's just what they did.



Less related to security and retirement is the Disney book about Mickey, Donald, Goofy and Pluto touring the USA by automobile.

Do you remember any special early reading that might still be influencing your thinking today?
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Jason and the Golden Fleece
Old 12-09-2007, 10:54 AM   #2
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Jason and the Golden Fleece

Greek Mythology: Jason, the Argonauts and the Golden Fleece

The tale is too long to relate here, but it's all about a poboy who done good, rescued the Golden Fleece and won the hand of the princess after a series of dashing adventures. Quite the plot! I suppose it gave me the idea that you had to get out there and take risks to get ahead.

I think this is going to be an interesting thread!
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Old 12-09-2007, 11:17 AM   #3
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I remember reading several influential books in grade school as i worked my way down the library shelves - one had a guy getting some WW2 surplus rig via some horse trading, putting an extra axle under it and making money trucking, then using it to pull a (free) lorry out of a lake, removing the motor from the lorry, and using the motor to power a race car - really wonder what those books were! Then there was the Catholic college literature book with the lovely story of a castle being bombarded, which resulted in a gent's arm being shot off, wherupon he picked it up and flung it back at the attackers. Those Catholics are some kind of tough!

Somehow the character of those stories seems different than the television programs starring the Tanner family, or "Saved by the Bell" or any of the other drivel that, while ostensibly teaching good life lessons, shows the actors as small, selfish, whining, incompetent brats. I think there is some value in showing charactors as good and that there is value in being ashamed to be bad.
Oh - am not, nor ever have been, Catholic, a truck driver, or a racecar builder - but i recognise the influence.
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Old 12-09-2007, 01:45 PM   #4
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My childhood fiction favorites were "Lord of the Rings" and the "Conan" series. I guess this
is what led me to the exciting, swashbuckling career of computer science.
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Old 12-10-2007, 05:55 AM   #5
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My childhood favorites were Dr. Suess. I loved the imaginative pictures and the stories carried positive messages.

Green Eggs & Ham: Be willing to try new things

Horton Hears a Who: Be willing to stand up for what's right

Horton Hatches the Egg: Be a faithful friend, keep your word

McElligot's Pool: Adventure/wondrous places can be right at your feet
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Old 12-10-2007, 07:57 AM   #6
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The entire Little House on the Prairie series Plenty of lessons across the board to be learned there! Mom used to read these, the Lord of the Rings series, Agatha Christie's, etc. to me as a child. Still a book worm!
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Old 12-10-2007, 09:57 AM   #7
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I can't really remember what I was reading as a youngster, because I discovered Asimov & Heinlein about my 10th birthday and never looked back. Lord of the Rings was in there somewhere too, as was the Narnia series. I still don't feel comfortable disposing of 16 feet of "Golden Age" sci-fi paperbacks rotting in the spare bedroom's bookshelves... what if the libraries stop stocking "The Left Hand of the Electron"!??

I vaguely recall some old Edgar Rice Burroughs (Tarzan and his Mars stories) and Zane Grey westerns handed down by my grandfather.

When I was about eight years old I was fascinated by a garage sale of the complete works of Alexandre Dumas because I'd never seen anything published in the 1890s. After a dozen or so military moves, those volumes have been sitting on my desk for over a year as I get ready to list them on AbeBooks.com.
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Old 12-10-2007, 10:57 AM   #8
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When I was about 6, my great uncle gave me The Complete Tales of Uncle Remus by Joel Chandler Harris. My dad used to read it to me at bedtime and my uncle, who was living with us, acted out all of the antics as they played out in the story. We still laugh at the time that Ms 'Possum's only answer to the question at hand was to hang upside down in the tree, swinging by her tail. Dad and I both looked at Uncle to see how he was going to act that out... Oh, the lessons I learned from those forest critters, and the joy I received from my Dad and Uncle!

I bought the book to read to my kids and the antics of Briar Rabbit, Briar Fox and Briar Bear came to life again. Only then did I understand why Dad laughed so much when he read to me. Dialect makes for a difficult read and the stories are so funny...you have to stop to laugh because you can't chuckly mentally while you go on...concentration is necessary to keep the heavy dialect story going. I found myself enjoying the stories as much as the kids...and when I was reading Uncle Remus, DH always found time to join us.

Today, we still use certain lines from the book to describe life's situations...like...Briar Bear's reaction to Briar Fox's question of "What does your common sense tell you?"...Briar Bear scratched his head like his common sense didn't tell him anything.

Disney made an Uncle Remus movie, Song of the South I think. Disney only brings its movies out every so often and DH took me to see it...kids were grown. It was like a trip back in time to me. As we left the theater, DH commented that we were the only people there who didn't have a child in tow!
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Old 12-10-2007, 11:13 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords View Post
I can't really remember what I was reading as a youngster, because I discovered Asimov & Heinlein about my 10th birthday and never looked back. Lord of the Rings was in there somewhere too, as was the Narnia series.

Same thing here. Except add in the Black Stallion books for good measure.

My father read us a number of the Grimms' fairy tales and Hans Christian Andersen tales and also read the Wind in the Willows to us several times, so they stick with me. And Hans Christian Andersen's, The Red Shoes can about give me nightmares: And then she confessed all her sin, and the executioner struck off her feet with the red shoes; but the shoes danced away with the little feet across the field into the deep forest.
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Old 12-10-2007, 11:42 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gandalf42 View Post
My childhood favorites were Dr. Suess. I loved the imaginative pictures and the stories carried positive messages.

Green Eggs & Ham: Be willing to try new things

Horton Hears a Who: Be willing to stand up for what's right

Horton Hatches the Egg: Be a faithful friend, keep your word

McElligot's Pool: Adventure/wondrous places can be right at your feet
My son loved Dr. Suess books when he was little, especially the ABC book and...W for washing Waldo Woo. He got stuck with the nick name of Waldo.

When he graduated from Texas A&M, I gave him Dr. Suess' Oh The Places You'll Go (and a big fat check). IIRC, Dr. Suess wrote it as a speech to a college graduating class. It has simplistic yet meaningful comments about spikes and dips in careers. I especially like the comments about getting stuck in the waiting place...waiting for a phone to ring...waiting for a yes or a no.

I chuckled when one of his classmates gave him Where's Waldo as a graduation present! Hardly anyone ever calls him Waldo anymore...too bad.
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Old 12-10-2007, 11:53 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Martha View Post
Same thing here. Except add in the Black Stallion books for good measure.

My father read us a number of the Grimms' fairy tales and Hans Christian Andersen tales and also read the Wind in the Willows to us several times, so they stick with me. And Hans Christian Andersen's, The Red Shoes can about give me nightmares: And then she confessed all her sin, and the executioner struck off her feet with the red shoes; but the shoes danced away with the little feet across the field into the deep forest.
Whoa! One of my honey's most influential movies is The Red Shoes, which is the story of a ballerina being torn between her obsessive love of her art and the tutelage of the empressario and her love for her beau. Looks like for film the beau replaced God. Art/work vs. relationship. Dunno why my obessive and driven girl is touched by that film...

I grok that Heinlein/scifi attraction. Am influenced by the dish with money in it by the door that water brothers of Smith dipped into in Stranger in a Strange Land.
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