story talk

“Little Red Riding Hood Was My First Love”: Shoutout This Week To Charles Dickens

Little Red Riding Hood meets the wolfOkay so usually my weekly shoutouts are to readers, people who have commented on the blog or written a message or left a voicemail or something. But…

I came across this quote by Charles Dickens today and couldn’t pass it up:

”Little Red Riding Hood was my first love.

I felt that if I could have married Little Red Riding Hood, I should have known perfect bliss.”

His first love! I never thought of a fairy tale character as something that could even qualify for such a prominent position in someone’s life.

But for Charles Dickens, Little Red Riding Hood was someone who could make him the happiest person in the world.

I wish I could talk to him and ask him more about this. What was it about the story of Little Red Riding Hood and her character that connected with him so much he actually considered her his first love??

Sadly, unless I come across something by him where he’s written more on this subject I’ll never know.

If you’ve ever fallen in love with a fairy tale character comment below and tell me about it!

story talk

Why does Cinderella’s father allow her to be treated like a slave?

Cinderella sweeping invisible to her father

”They took her pretty clothes away from her and put an old grey bedgown on her, and gave her wooden shoes.

…In the evening when she had worked till she was weary she had no bed to go to, but had to sleep by the hearth in the cinders.

And as on that account she always looked dusty and dirty, they called her Cinderella.”

In the Disney movie and some versions of the story Cinderella her father dies shortly after marrying the Evil Stepmother, and so he never knows the abuse Cinderella experiences at the hand of her Evil Stepmother and stepsisters.

But in most versions of the story Cinderella’s father is clearly alive and well, interacting with the family and talking directly to Cinderella.

Surely then he can see that his daughter is suddenly wearing tattered clothes, doing all the housework, and doesn’t have a bedroom anymore, being forced to sleep on the floor amongst the ashes?

So… why does he allow this?

In the Brother’s Grimm version of Cinderella he even asks Cinderella and her two stepsisters what presents they want him to bring back from a trip he’s going on.

Um…how about you get Cinderella her nice clothes and her room back? Oh and free her from having to work like a slave all day long? Just a thought.

When all is said and done though, the only real explanation is that he considered the way she was being treated as okay on some level.

Evil Stepmother who abuses CinderellaMaybe his mind became warped and twisted by his new wife, the Evil Stepmother. Maybe she whispered poisonous thoughts into his ear, about how Cinderella needed to be worked hard to fix some sort of personality flaw.

Maybe the Evil Stepmother was a witch, and made it so that Cinderella’s father was blind to the abuses that Cinderella was suffering.

By the Evil Stepmother’s spell he only saw Cinderella as she used to be, in her fine clothes and without the strain of being worked 24/7 on her face.

That would explain why he would so casually ask Cinderella what present she wanted from the fair like that.

These are just my theories of course. As for the old stories of Cinderella, they give no explanation as to why her father let her be treated so badly. I’m guessing this is because it was felt no explanation was needed.

These old fairy tales came from a harsh world. For example, if you didn’t have enough money then a legit idea to solve that problem was to take your kids into the woods and leave them to die (Hansel and Gretel).

So maybe Cinderella’s father didn’t need to be tricked into being okay with the bad treatment she received. He might have felt like it was just a natural part of a harsh world.

So why do you think Cinderella’s father let her be treated so badly? Post your theories in the comments below!

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The Crazy Old Woman: A Strange Version Of Goldilocks And The Three Bears

Old Lady Goldilocks Three Bears StoryYou’re tucked into bed and snuggled up to your favorite teddy bear, it’s past your bedtime but there’s no way you’re going to sleep.

Why? Because you haven’t got your bedtime story yet.

We’ve all been there when we were younger, and you probably have fond memories of the same bedtime stories that I do. Little Red Riding Hood, Hansel and Gretel, Babbity Rabbity And Her Cackling Stump, and of course Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

In the classic story the bears are as harmless as a fluffy teddy bear, and what would normally be a case of breaking and entering is made cute because Goldilocks is simply a lost little girl.

Three Bears Goldilocks Oldest Story

But in the older versions of the story things were different. Instead of a child who got lost in the woods after picking some flowers, the main character is an old woman who’s up to no good.

She was walking in the woods and as soon as she came across a house she immediately started peeping through all the windows. And seeing that no one was home, she walked right in like she owned the place.

Old Lady breaking into the three bears house.The house was actually owned by three bears, but in this version of the story they aren’t a cute cuddly family of Mama Bear, Papa Bear, and Baby Bear. Instead they’re three ferocious bachelor bears who are described by their sizes. A Small Bear, a Middle-sized Bear, and a Huge Bear, who have all decided to take a walk to amuse themselves while their porridge cools down.

Well as soon as the old woman saw the porridge on the table she helped herself to the food. First sampling the porridge in Huge Bear’s bowl she burned her tongue, then moving over to Middle-sized Bear’s porridge she thought it was too cold. But Small Bear’s porridge was, you guessed it, just right.

After filling up on stolen porridge the old woman continued to rummage through the house, trying out the different sized furniture (loved Small Bear’s chair, but broke it). She worked her way upstairs to try out the beds and drifted off to sleep on the smallest one.

Meanwhile the bears came back from their walk to find the place wrecked, with broken furniture everywhere and overturned bowls of porridge on the table.

Small Bear shocked that his chair was broken by a mysterious invader.They tromp through the house following the trail of mayhem and end up upstairs, where Small Bear spots the old woman in his bed. He screams in his high pitched voice “Someone’s in my bed!!” and startles the old woman awake. She sees three angry and ferocious bears staring at her, so she does what pretty much anyone would do in this situation… promptly jumps out the window.

In some old versions of the story things end there, with the old woman running back to her own house and free to burglar another day. In other versions though the bears chase after her. In true weird old fairy tale style the bears don’t maul her, but instead throw her on top of St. Paul’s Cathedral and is impaled on one of the steeples. Yikes!

You can see why things were softened up in later versions of the story Goldilocks And The Three Bears. Can you imagine if they didn’t?

Someone’s mom would be reading them the story and at the end say “…And then the old woman was impaled on the steeple of St. Paul’s Cathedral, the end. Goodnight!”