Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Rare Species

True, it snowed here yesterday. But I bet SoCal doesn't have bread-and-butterflies.

You will of course remember the bread-and-butterfly from Disney's Alice in Wonderland. This is one case in which Disney improved on the original. This is John Tenniel's drawing from Through the Looking Glass:

That's the kind of insect I used to be terrified would crawl across my face at night. I would blame this on Tenniel's dour imagination, but here's the description he was drawing from:

'Crawling at your feet,' said the Gnat (Alice drew her feet back in some alarm), 'you may observe a Bread-and-Butterfly. Its wings are thin slices of Bread-and-butter, its body is a crust, and its head is a lump of sugar.'

'And what does IT live on?'

'Weak tea with cream in it.'

A new difficulty came into Alice's head. 'Supposing it couldn't find any?' she suggested.

'Then it would die, of course.'

'But that must happen very often,' Alice remarked thoughtfully.

'It always happens,' said the Gnat.

WHAT KIND OF CHILDREN'S STORY IS THIS?! It's amazing to me that the Victorians didn't just creep themselves out, right into extinction.

John Tenniel, by the way, lost an eye fencing with his father when he was twenty.

Just wanted to throw that out there.

The non-scary bread-and-butterfly was given to me by Matt on the occasion of my unbirthday yesterday. It is very charming AND magnetic, and it is perched on top of my refrigerator. Thankfully, I can provide weak tea and cream DAILY.

1 comment:

Ivan said...

a very merry unbirthday tooooo yooooooooou!