Mister Dog: The Dog Who Belonged to Himself MOBI ä
Margaret Wise Brown wrote my favorite childhood book Home For a Bunny She also wrote Goodnight Moon which is one of my favorite books to read to my kids Surely I would love a book about Mister Dog the pipe smoking dog who belongs to himself It turns out Mister Dog is not his name His name is actually Crispin s Crispian His name was Crispin s Crispian because he belonged to himself Sure That makes perfect sense.This is one odd little book He was a funny old dog He liked Strawberries It seems there are people who are against this book due to the pipe smoking and the fact that a little boy goes home with the dog, etc., etc It s a 1950 s Golden Book with a pipe smoking dog I m not sure what folks really expect, but I do know that I expected a nice story at the heart of Mister Dog Unfortunately, this book was a weird mess with one odd event after another This evening he made a bone soup with lots of meat in it He gave some to the boy, and the boy liked it The boy didn t give Caspian his chop bone, but he put some of his bright green vegetable in the soup The writing style changed several times throughout the book which added to the overall strangeness.The only way I would recommend Mister Dog is in the Hey, you want to see a really strange book kind of way I haven t read this to my kids, and I don t plan to I remember their reaction to But No Elephants I m not bringing them down that road again All I can say is I m a glutton for punishment After writing this review I decided I d try reading Mister Dog to my kids after all My oldest declared That doesn t make any sense I knew better I really did. This book is perfect in every way and the fact that some readers here disapprove of it makes it even perfect. I don t understand how anyone can see the cover of this book and not immediately run out and buy it What a cold dark soul you must have There is one odd page where Brown describes how Mister Dog and the boy he befriends who also belongs to himself are conservatives I think she means Burkean, not Limbaughian, but it s still kind of a weird moment. I wasn t a huge fan of this book as a kid It was in a large anthology of Little Golden Books I have no idea how that anthology came to our family, now that I think of it I may have been in middle school before I read it.What I remember about this book is that like the title says the dog belonged to himself Also, there is a boy who belonged to himself I think the book said something like he was his very own boy That really stuck with me This story made it seem so reasonable for a person to be his her very own person and belong to him herself.Many many many years later I was hanging out with kids, being their adult caregiver person and a woman asked me if one of them was mine Is that your boy she said Because of this book, I told her he was his own boy She got really frustrated with me even though she was projecting a persona as a free spirited hippy who should have had at least a clue of what I was talking about and repeatedly asked me if he was my boy I kept telling her that he was his own boy, until she finally asked me if I was his mother and I said no Sometimes it s fun to annoy people who should know better. Aww, what a wonderful story of two independent souls who become housemates with separate beds, of course Read for the first time ever in b Story Land 40 Of The Best Little Golden Books Ever Published 1786505 Want to read again Especially because I found a possible reference to the dog s name, in Shakespeare s Henry V Really, really bizarre But I should have expected that from a book that I only found because it was weird enough to be shared on buzzfeed and imgur. Where was the climax I need a climax, damn it I wonder how Margaret Wise Brown pitched this story to the Little Golden Book people Well, Miss Brown, we liked The Color Kittens and The Seven Little Postmen What have you got for us this time I ve decided to take my next book in a slightly different direction Picture this A hairy, Republican nudist no, it s okay, stay with me convinces a little homeless boy to come and sleep with him It has a wonderful moral Perhaps not Nevertheless, that s or less what happens in Mister Dog, surely one of the most peculiar picture story books in existence It begins with a depressed looking mutt pouring milk on his cornflakes, dressing gown gaping open at the front Why go to the trouble of wearing a dressing gown and slippers in the morning when you leave the house in the nude And is that a bone in your pocket or are you just happy to see us Oh Oh, it literally is a bone in your pocket.He certainly doesn t look happy to see us In fact, he looks like the weight of the world is on his shoulders Either that or he s had a massive night and needs hair of the dog rather than cereal and strawberries Check out the front cover at the top of the page Look at his eyes Has Mister Dog has seen disturbing things that he cannot unsee Or is that something stronger than tobacco in his corncob pipe.The dog s name is Crispin s Crispian We are told that he was named Crispin s Crispian because he belonged to himself Okay, so he answers to nobody An admirable sentiment But then, if his name is Crispin, why is he called Crispin s Crispian Why not Crispin s Crispin Where did the a come from And if his name is Crispian, why is he not Crispian s Crispian He probably dreamed it up after a session on that pipe.But the best part is when we are told that Mister Dog is a conservative That is a direct quote And note the italics It is a word that Margaret Wise Brown wishes to define He liked everything at the right time dinner at dinner time, lunch at lunchtime, breakfast in time for breakfast, and sunrise at sunrise, and sunset at sunset And at bedtime he liked everything in its own place the cup in the saucer, the chair under the table, the stars in the heavens, the moon in the sky, and himself in his own little bed Yeah, you gotta watch those damn liberals, they ll move sunset to the morning just to keep the unions happy It ll be a two hour working day Only Eisenhower will keep the stars in the heavens and the moon in the sky A vote for Adlai Stevenson is a vote for chaos Still, it s a rather quaint 1952 view of conservatism What might the 2016 version say Crispin s Crispian was a conservative And not a pathetic thumb sucking moderate A proper Tea Party loving, Trump voting, gun toting far right conservative He liked everything at the right time, which was whenever he damn well wanted He liked everything in its own place the cup in the saucer, the chair under the table, and the Mexicans in Mexico, south of the wall Margaret Wise Brown died the same year this was published, and I can t decide if she was an eccentric genius or a nut job She is best known for Goodnight Moon, which was haunting and strange, but Mister Dog is at least a little warmer, thanks to Garth Williams fun illustrations Williams was probably best known for illustrating the classic versions of Charlotte s Web and the Little House on the Prairie series Yet for all the peculiarities and there are a LOT of them , Mister Dog has a very valid message Its subtitle is The Dog Who Belonged to Himself He answers to no human family and asks nothing of the state He is clearly a classic conservative lover of small government.One day, Mister Dog meets a little boy who is fishing in a stream Who and what are you Mister Dog asks The boy replies I am a boy, and I belong to myself Note that the boy does not introduce himself by name but as a boy Yet another oddity Mister Dog is glad, and invites the boy to come and live with him The boy agrees, with an alarming lack of due diligence.Then they went to a butcher shop to get his poor dog a bone, Crispian said Now, since Crispin s Crispian belonged to himself, he gave himself the bone and trotted home with it.Note the direct quote Why would Mister Dog say he wanted to get his poor dog a bone He should say to get my poor dog a bone Who edited this stuff Anyway, then the little boy prances off happily with Crispin Crispian, blissfully unaware that soon he will be tidying a dog s living room They make dinner at Mister Dog s house and each of them, in Brown s words chewed it up and swallowed it into his little fat stomach Then boy and dog sleep in side by side beds The moral of this story is clear your life is your own, and don t let anyone else rule it Mister Dog belongs to himself The boy belongs to himself They both act on free will If the boy can be easily convinced to come and do chores then, hey, that s just Mister Dog s good fortune.For all of Margaret Wise Brown s oddities, I think she knew how to tap into the brain of a child The word belong resonated with me As a child, I heard it often I belonged to my parents and my friends belonged to theirs Who does such and such belong to adults would ask each other This never sat well with me, for I felt that nobody owned me This is the child like mindset Brown exploits and which Mister Dog then exploits with the little boy.But Brown also implies that you ll be happier if you let people into your life Look how despondent Mister Dog appeared when preparing his breakfast cereal, back before he had met the boy And look at how happy he was afterwards You can be yourself and belong to yourself without having to keep to yourself Mister Dog is strange, confusing, disturbing, and utterly unique And I love it If I was American and Crispin s Crispian was on the presidential ticket this year, I d vote conservative He wouldn t build a wall to keep the Mexicans out Although there is a fence around his house and a sign that says NO CATS , so I guess you never know.https dadreads.blogspot.com.au 2016 Caution Spoilers When a man s best friend is his dog, that dog has a problem Edward Abbey Mr Dog which is the original title of this book is one of my favorite books of all time My mother read it to me as a child 1950 s and I read to my own children They turned out just fine, thank you, despite all the bad influences lurking in this book that people want to complain about Margaret Wise Brown based Crispin s Crispian on her own dog also named Crispin s Crispian The literary Crispin s Crispian the dog who belonged to himself is an independent, kindly, grown up pooch who walks mainly on his hind legs with a walking stick, he wears an old bathrobe and slippers, eats bread and milk for breakfast and is fond of strawberries He lives in a two story dog house surrounded by a white picket fence, dogwood trees and dog tooth violets, with a kitchen, dining room and bedroom upstairs There s no mention of a bathroom, so I assume he lets himself out when he needs to see a dog about a man While out for a walk one fine morning, he encounters a little boy, who is shown sitting on the bank of a stream, fishing Mr Dog befriends and adopts the boy s little boy who also belongs to himself After a morning of play, the boy and Crispin s Crispian bond, buy, eat and consume with gusto a home cooked dinner together chez Crispian At the end of the day, after tidying up the house, they fall asleep in their own little beds and dream their own dreams It s the story of a perfect day, innocent friendship and love at first sight A perfect bedtime book What s not to like Lots, evidently So what if Crispin s Crispian smokes a pipe He doesn t smoke it indoors He doesn t wear pants, either If you re expecting Children and Families, the Vice Squad and or Animal Control to come crashing through the door of the two story dog house and haul this canine miscreant and his underage accomplice away, you ll have to wait for the sequel Dogs like MEAT, not tofu Mr Dog also likes raw eggs, God forbid And the Boy s Little Boy balanced his meal with a bright green vegetable and gave some to Crispin s Crispian to put in his bone soup Reading between the lines, I m sure Mr Dog s bread was whole grain and his milk was skim He probably purchased the strawberries he liked so from his local organic farmer s market Moreover, he bought his bone from his local butcher not Piggly Wiggly and took it home in a brown paper bag not plastic After dinner, Mr Dog and the boy s little boy washed and dried the dishes, and put everything its place For its portrayal of good and balanced eating habits dairy, grains, meat and leafy green vegetables , supporting local growers and merchants, and praising cleanliness and order, I d give this book two paws up for intelligent, responsible life choices and habits Just remember, Snoopy was delusional, Lady and the Tramp ate spaghetti, and, Lassie, probably, never came home. Once upon a time there was a funny dog named Crispin s Crispian He was named Crispin s Crispian because he belonged to himself.So begins the story of a dog who runs bang into a little boy, who also belongs to himself This quirky, breathtakingly illustrated story is one of Margaret Wise Brown s best.