Friday, December 21, 2007

Off Trail, with Nashi and Kurari

Given how illness and overwork have decimated Citizen of Somewhere Else for the past month, it's time once again to consign another programming schedule to the recycle folder of history. I have a bunch of posts in various stages of ye olde writing process that are worth putting out there whenever I get them done, not on a day of the week that no longer even corresponds to my teaching schedule. My grades are due on the 27th, so don't expect too much going on here before then.

In honor of this being the last Family Friday post for awhile, however, let me note that onechan is like Tiger Woods in having a birthday come during the holiday season. Hers, though, is ten days before his, and, unlike his folks, we don't get her one shoe for Christmas (not least b/c we don't celebrate it) and one for her birthday, although we are almost as cheap. But when you have an imagination as rich as hers and a little sister as cool as hers, you don't need much stuff.

Case in point: onechan has been adding to our pantheon of imaginary characters. Unlike the mythical Saja and Suweet, however, her imaginary friends Nashi and Kurari are pretty much normal little girls. They're both Spanish, and they may be 6-year-old twins, although I have to check on that, because sometimes it seems like Kurari is Nashi's friend and sometimes her little sister. And sometimes it sounds like Kurari's parents are dead. My uncertainty stems from the fact that onechan rarely gives me updates on their lives, preferring instead to tell stories to herself about them and play with them. It was a really funny moment to me last night in my parents' hotel room (they made it for her actual birthday and will stay through her girls' party on Sunday, weather permitting--yeah!) when, in the midst of playing with her gift from them (a wood block stamp/colored pencils kit), she started telling them about her new friends. I don't know how much they caught, because she was kind of distracted and sounded like she was talking to herself, and they were very distracted for other reasons that I shall not be getting into here, but it was striking to me how casually she was speaking of characters she invented (and knows full well are "pretend"). It's amazing to watch onechan become a story-teller and to see how play and storytelling are so intertwined in her head and in her actions....


bill benzon said...

I think imaginary friends are fairly common for young kids.

I remember when I was in my teens I used to chat and play with a neighboring 4-year old. He used to chatter away about his imaginary friend; not only that, he talked to him.

Now, what's REALLY STRANGE is having this internet uncle who tells stories. A buddy of mine, David Porush, pointed out that that sort of thing showed up in, I believe, Snowcrash. One of the central characters had a tutor from cyberspace.

The Constructivist said...

Yeah, but you're a whole lot more interesting than The Librarian, who was basically an exposition plug-in that most always dragged the plot to a screeching halt. Kind of an anti-narrative device.

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