Friday, October 3, 2008

The Brothers Grimm Come in Handy

The other night, when her mother asked her to put some dishes away, my niece wailed, "Why?!" in such a distressed tone that I answered,

"Because you are now Cinderella, and you will have to act as a maid and do all of the housework from now until you are eighteen. Luckily, you will then get to marry a handsome prince, and live happily ever after. I, on the other hand, will get to marry a duke whom you are gracious enough to offer me."

She started working.

"I won't even miss the toe that I cut off so that my foot would fit in to the slipper that the prince had brought in hopes of finding you."

Then her mother chimed in, "I, on the other hand, will have my eyes pecked out by the birds, because of their sympathy to you."

By now she was smiling. Sometimes it comes in handy to know the corpus of a couple of old German Linguists.

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