5.24.2011

WHAT WOULD MARY POPPINS DO?


Generally in my life I have found that any problem I have may be solved by simply asking myself one of three questions: 1. Is anybody looking? 2. Will I regret this later? and 3. Can I eat it?

No, no, that's not it. Let's start this over.

Generally in my life I have found that any problem I have may be solved by simply asking myself one of three questions. Allow me to elaborate.

Let's say I am having relationship troubles of some kind. I simply ask myself, "What would Meg Ryan do?" Usually, what Meg Ryan would do is terribly cute, requires the furrowing of one's brows, and involves either a. "Flying To Seattle," b. "Slapping Him At A Wedding," or c. "Going To The Mattresses."

See? Helpful.

Here's another example. Imagine per chance that your heroine (me) has just accomplished something tragically disastrous and/or is fraught with embarrassment, and showing one's face in public again is imminent. I simply ask myself, "What would Anne Shirley do?" I find that, typically, Anne Shirley would wallow in her misfortune in a grand fashion, and then by and by she would pick herself up by her bootstraps, face her fears head on, and in the process, courageously make an even bigger fool of herself as soon as the opportunity allowed. Delightful!

(Unsurprisingly, I get to ask myself what Anne Shirley would do an awful lot, and I wonder why that is?)

My last example is this: Say I am faced with a parenting quandary that is so overly daunting, so terribly difficult, that I have already called my mother, consulted my mom's group, and productively eaten everything carbohydrate-based in my pantry, and still no answer is presenting itself. What then? This is when I ask myself, "What would Mary Poppins do?"

Mary Poppins is my parenting ideal. She is quick, she is firm, she is exacting but forgiving, she accepts precisely no nonsense and says bizarre things like "Well-begun is half done." The children in her charge simply adore her.

I found during my time as a baby sitter (and as favorite aunt) that kids don't need a lot of B.S. They want to know where they stand with you and they don't like to be treated like babies. Furthermore, they do well when their imaginations and fantasies are indulged and yet they must know their place and how to behave politely. Sure sure, we can all pop in and out of chalk paintings all we like, but people who get their feet wet must learn to take their medicine.

What would Mary Poppins would do?

Whatever she darn well pleased.



This post was also posted on Babble
cause sometimes your brain stops working and you just have to do stuff like that.

32 comments :

  1. haha! I love this! I too ask myself the question "what would Anne Shirley do," except when it comes to romantic relationships since I am currently still at the age where she just doesn't completely understand that she belongs with Gilbert and rejects his proposal. Anyway, enough rambling. Another great post.

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  2. Mary Poppins from the movie or from the books?

    Because I am Mary Poppins from the books: meaner, less nonsense, none of this Julie Andrews frippery.

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  3. Probably more of a Sally, though isn't Kathleen my favorite... And now I'm going to have to go dig out my stack of Anne books. I'm staying withe my parents, so they're probably somewhere in a box in the basement. Their yard is simply STUFFED with violets, lilacs and blooming apple trees so I have been thinking of Anne and Diana and Violet Vale.

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  4. Mary Poppins is ALSO my parenting ideal and to top it off you put it into words better than I could have. So, since I don't have kids of my own (yet) the big question is: can I use that paragraph on Poppins when I advertise my nanny services? I'll quote ya.

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  5. Kathleen Kelly. I love her cardigans and books. Also, as much as I love orgasms, I wouldn't fake one in a deli.

    North Meets South

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  6. I just adore you, because of you I often find myself asking "what would Meg Ryan do?" and when I have children I will now consult Miss Poppins. p.s. I'm totally a Kathleen Kelly.

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  7. I'm right there with you on Mary Poppins! Just the other day my little sis asked me "if you could be any character from a fantasy novel who would you be" and I said Mary Poppins! "She is smart, sassy, and gets that handsome Bert." Little sis protested that Bert was not handsome. I begged to differ. Regardless, I love "Enough is as good as a feast!" and she's definitely my parenting ideal.

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  8. I am definitely a Kathleen...and I adore Mary Poppins. I'm definitely more the movie version. I just watched You've Got Mail...twice. I love when they show it on tv. I feel like all the other Meg Ryan/Tom Hanks lovers are watching it with me.

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  9. AnonymousMay 25, 2011

    I would say I go to the Anne Shirley in "Anne of the Island". Firm, but sweet and understanding. I want to be a teacher and would love if my students loved me like Anne's loved her!

    Long time reader, first time commenter. Your "What Would Anne Shirley Do?" inspired me to re-read all the books. Such a lovely undertaking!

    Kate.

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  10. I love Anne Shirley! You need to visit Prince Edward Island, here in Atlantic Canada, where everywhere you turn, you can buy a bonnet with red braids and raspberry cordial. We visit each summer just to see the musical. It is so much fun!

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  11. It's incredible how often Meg Ryan can play into my life. In the last few weeks, I've had to tell myself to go to the mattresses over and over and over again... Funny thing is, it works!

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  12. this, my dear, is a very well written post. bravo!

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  13. The Godfather is the I Ching. The Godfather is the sum of all wisdom. The Godfather is the answer to any question. What should I pack for my summer vacation? "Leave the gun, take the cannoli." What day of the week is it? "Maunday, Tuesday, Thursday, Wednesday." And so the answer to your question is "Go to the mattresses."

    You're at war. It's not personal, it's business. It's not personal, it's business. Recite that to yourself every time you feel you're losing your nerve. I know you worry about being brave, (don't) this is your chance. Fight. Fight to the death.

    (Fight...fight fight fight...)

    Enter Greg Kinnear.

    you're welcome.

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  14. I think you might be my long lost twin! Oh wait, I mean Meg, Anne, and Mary Poppins. Hehe! I ask myself those very things. I also usually include Matilda from Roald Dahl. She is very sensible indeed.

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  15. Uhhh! So hard to decide which Meg Ryan I am! I'd kill to be Kathleen; I read constantly (Pride and Prejudice 100 times) and have too many cardigans to count, but in reality, I'm probably a Sally. I'm "difficult", slightly prudish, have complicated restaurant orders, and I consider myself low maintenance in relationships, but...

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  16. I would have to say my mothering-example would be my late grandmother. She was so so kind and sweet and even my Dad can't remember her ever being "angry". She taught her kids so well and they knew what she expected of them, but there was never any negative reinforcement. I hope I can be that way when I have kids someday :)

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  17. I need a parenting ideal after my madam has now disobeyed me every day for the past week and found the biscuit tin and eaten biscuits when I've told her not to, and I'm running out of ways to punish her! Her dolls pram has been taken away, she's been sent to bed early, and I've stopped her watching her favourite show. Dramas. But congrats on yet another gorgeous picture

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  18. Oh I am so a Kathleen Kelly. Great post

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  19. I am definitely a Kathleen Kelly, but I don't think I could ever pull off that cute pixie cut.

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  20. I want to be a mom like Anne Shirley. She's always gardening and calling her children "little dears" or "darling."

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  21. Oh, Mary Poppins, she is my parenting Ideal. Also my mom, who pretty much was Mary Poppins. She threw elaborate birthday parties with little or no money, dressed up as a fortune teller at the infamous 5th circus birthday, but then had the gumption to be sensible and round us all up to clean up our adventures when they were completed.
    I'm Anne Shirley, not just because I have her hair...I once threw up all over an airport in front of my Gilbert.

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  22. Lets see, the Meg Ryan from Joe vs the Volcano (many to choose from), or Meg Ryan with Mark Ruffalo from In The Cut? That one showed a bit more of Miss Meg, and that Mr. Ruffalo sure had some hard duty. Right.

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  23. The man in me is proud to say that I don't know who Anne Shirley is. But the closet chick-flick fan in me understood every Meg Ryan/Tom Hanks reference. I won't put myself on the Meg spectrum, but I'll be Joe Fox from You've Got Mail. :)

    Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.

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  24. How could ANY person not know Anne!? You have a hole in your life that needs to be mended.

    As mothers go I like to imagine myself as a Marmee (Little Women) but I have a feeling in my gut that I am actually the mom from A Christmas Story.

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  25. I started reading your blog a couple of months ago and had to google "Anne Shirley." Then I was thoroughly ashamed if my well-read self and promptly read the entire series and adored it. So thank you! And I'm probably the Meg Ryan who flies to Seattle.

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  26. You are brilliant. I love your posts -- quirky and fun yet serous and insightful.

    And I'll definitely give a big fat AMEN to Mary Poppins. And now I think I'll have to pop in the DVD.

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  27. I love love love Meg Ryan. She is my favorite actress of all time :)
    I would have to say I am very much a Kathleen Kelly, haha.

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  28. This is a truly lovely post.

    Thank you.

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  29. This has got to be one of the best things I have ever read. Because it feels like it came straight from my brain, except it didn't.

    (P.S. this is officially my second comment on your lovely blog. The other comment? Was in regard to your use of the phrase 'Thank Your.' I am powerless to resist.)

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  30. i absolutely love this post! you are too cute.

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  31. I don't know...I think the first three questions worked better to cover every situation I've ever encountered!

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  32. I wonder how my primary class would react to this, they can get so out of control

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