Revisiting Narnia: Wait, I Never Got This As a Kid…Aslan Is Jesus?

13 Responses

  1. It’s always been funny to me that when we do kid things (like play on the swings or a slide) we always imagining we’re re-capturing a childhood experience when in fact we’re experiencing it in a completely different way. Not better or worse, just different.

    BUT, I have to tell you this – I started giggling when I read the post title because it took me to a conversation with my older son’s former girlfriend. She said she wanted to name a child Azlan. I said, “Like the lion?” and she said, “No! With a ‘Z’!” (Yeah, that makes a difference.) So I suggested that she use “Bedazzlin” as a middle name. She did not find this amusing. I relayed this triggered memory to my younger son who is sitting near me and he said, “Aslan? Isn’t that the movie about Jesus?”

  2. Kathryn says:

    Whereas MY association with Aslan consists of remembering that my best friend in grade 8 chose Aslan as the name of her mighty steed: her white 10-speed bicycle. Not yet having read the LWatW at that point, I named MY mighty steed (of the yellow persuasion): Banana. True story.
    Don’t you hate it when people get stuck on the post heading and seem to miss the entire essence of the post itself? Never mind. I did get it. I was just waiting to hear all about your coming-of-age over the religious themes of children’s literature. (or is the apostrophe after the ‘s’ when children is ALREADY a plural. Egad).
    I find the trampoline, as an adult, SUCH fun. So much more momentum. Such new awareness of body parts flying hither and yon. Such suddenly interesting bladder (non)control. And then there’s the time when the sheer bulk of me managed to counter-bounce my small son into outer space.
    He came down, eventually.
    And that childhood slide? So much warmer now that my hips have spread to the extent that they cause twin friction burns against the slide’s side rails. Thank GOD for fire-retardant clothing.
    I won’t even mention the thrill of swinging across the monkey bars (in my MIND only) as I hang there knowing that if I dare remove one hand in order to swing over to the next bar a scant 12 inches away I will first pull the remaining arm out of it’s socket and then plummet like a bag of Blackberry shares onto the gravel below. God I used to be able to skip a bar and grab only every second one. What the hell happened?
    Jocelyn, I’m GLAD your tight little weight-watcher ‘after’ poster-child body can handle the trampoline. Really I am. My heart also fills with joy at the thought of you whizzing down the slide without touching the sides. The mind boggles. (Bog, bogs, log, logs, sog, lob, lobs, gob, gobs, sole, goes, slog, glob, globs, globe, globes, lobe, lobes, BLOG, BLOGS, beg, begs, slob). See?
    OK, yah, some things are more fun now. I’ll admit it.

  3. lime says:

    slides for you, swings for me. they always made me feel free.

    one thing i never imagined as a surly 12 yr old arguing with my mother over washing dishes was that cleaning the kitchen on a saturday morning could be a meditative zen-like experience.

    i will caution however, from personal experience, that when attempting to savor the joys of childhood anew one should be quite careful around backyard ziplines requiring a good grip. it is wise to remember that the increased body weight and decreased upper body strength combined with unthinking zest for adventure and connection with one’s son can be ever so injurious….

  4. Jess says:

    People who name their sons Samuel are a menace to society. Did I mention that Todd’s first name is Samuel? He’s named after his father. Also Stone’s a middle name, guess what the first one is. Terrible, that. For some reason he’s already vetoed my idea of naming a future daughter Hortensia Valencia.

    I wish you could bring your trampoline to my wedding.

    • Jocelyn says:

      Wow! Richardson had five sons in the course of his first marriage, three of whom were named Samuel. All five sons died (so maybe it wasn’t the name so much as the time).

      Our trampoline at your wedding would = BEST WEDDING EVER.

  5. Lil says:

    I love trampolines. Doesn’t even matter that every time I try one out I end up twisting an ankle and spending the next few days hobbling like the old lady I am.

  6. Deborah says:

    This is why I loved teaching piano to adults, and the occasional gifted and commited younger person. At a recital once, I gave a little talk about authentic happiness, and how the effort that went into the learning and polishing of pieces, especially when accompanied by an enjoyment of same and a desire to inject one’s own self into the interpretation, resulted in the best kind of feeling one could possibly imagine. AND, you also had the auditory pleasure of some really nice tunes! There is nothing better than creating your own music, imho, and that doesn’t even mean playing your own compositions.

    Not every adult comes to experiences like trampolines and piano-playing with the same appreciation. I’m willing to bet that you just love getting on a real swing, too. I lament the replacement of swings that fit adults but could presumably knock the blocks off little kids, with rubber tire cutouts that fit nobody’s ass over the age of 8.
    My mother was such a grown-up child. Like you. I’m a bit that way myself and I see it in a couple of my kids. It makes us very lucky, don’t you think?

    And my god, but you can write. I still have fun trying to guess where you’re heading by what happens in the first 500 words, and I’m not usually right. That’s half the fun.

  7. Friko says:

    I could burst this bubble by saying, that for the twelve year old all things are possible. Once you are four times twelve you realise that, although you appreciate stuff more, you’re probably not going to get another go at it.

    But then I could also say, that, once you get to five times twelve, all things are possible again, and becoming childlike again in outlook, attitude and sheer bloodymindedness, and once you are wearing purple and running your stick along the railings, you do them just because you can.

    So why did you go and have this conversation with Sammy, when you could have had it just as easily with Ludwig? When he cold still hear you, of course?

    • Jocelyn says:

      I had the conversation with Sammy because, when I was first mulling over this idea, I searched quotes about childhood versus adulthood, etc., and the only quote I liked was Richardson’s.

  8. How do you do it, Jocelyn? You write the most amazing things. Oh, trampolines! I haven’t been lucky enough to get on one of those in years! I love those…and water slides too, and sledding, and dancing in my kitchen…just because it’s fun. Oh, and eating the white part out of the Oreo cookies first….I could go on all day…

  9. chlost says:

    Husband and I rather regularly lament that we just don’t have fun any more. Now I am thinking that we should get a trampoline.

  10. Robin Preble says:


  11. Meg says:

    I have found the most supreme joy in revisiting the literary character-friends of my youth. That and the swings at the playground. And the merry-go-round. And remembering my old paper route. Yes; I had one.

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