We need to talk about Goldilocks

Ever wondered what Goldilocks’ parents thought when she got in from vandalising? Did they turn her in? I would love to find out if there is a sequel, or write it.

We tell stories about bad behaviour not to glorify it but to provide a moral framework. And mock it perhaps. Some people list all the faults in characters in classic fairy stories and ask why we tell these stories to children. I have been wondering about whether seriously scary stories are important. Maybe not quite yet. But it is getting harder to avoid the trappings of halloween now Lily has such a social life.

I am not a fan of extorting and bribing, or in having to explain to a three-year-old why unknown people not much bigger than her in rather ugly dressing-up costumes might knock at our door and take away food we had got high hopes for (in our case, satsumas and bananas with faces drawn on). However, I do rather like playing with food and went in search of a good pumpkin carving on google. I recommend it for the sheer creativity. There are some wonderful nutters with more pumpkin and time on their hands than is necessarily good for them in the big wide world. And most of them have put the labours of their fruits on the web.

Does no one explain the dangers in putting your hands near a hungry gourd to youngsters these days? Maybe I need to carve one of these and leave it near the front door next year with a sign saying ‘treats inside – if you dare’ and see what happens. Except I am rather unadept at carving pumpkins. In fact, up until today I never had. Last night I reasoned that 1st November might be a good day to buy a pumpkin (turns out: not particularly) and bought one. I also reasoned I’d be good at thinking up what to do with it (turns out: they don’t have instructions). After a few minutes’ brain freeze with a not-as-cheap-as-we’d-hoped pumpkin I referred to my assistant, who dropped it. Just not the greatest couple of pumpkinologists.

Too bad. We will go to the Ball, and no amount of naughty children will stop me fulfilling my squash dreams. Out you go, Goldilocks. Learn some manners and next year bring me some fruit, biscuits, chocolate or cash, thank you very much.

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