The Power to Read

I am sure that this is part of a lot of your lives on a daily basis. Super Why is a favorite around our house. Our kids really like the hip hip hooray happy dance at the end. I am usually in the shower or getting ready, so I don’t usually pay close attention to the show. Plus there are around five episodes that they just play over and over again. However, for some reason, the other day when Super Why went all extra super with his Power to Read, it struck me. Now, Super Why’s power to read means showing kids how to pass a reading test. Super Why shows them three words that will complete a sentence. He and the audience kids then work together to choose the word that fits the best outcome for the story. This makes my teacher heart a little sad every time I see it. However what struck me on this regular old day was the real power of reading. There is a reason dictators throughout history have made reading illegal for the masses. Reading is the way human knowledge is passed and expanded. It is how the ideas that have changed the world have reached those making the change. Revolutions always start with words spread in the quiet and dark and secret until the spirits they invoke in people come bursting out to create a new age.

And sometimes the lessons are not so big. They are small and simple. Here are somethings I have learned as a lifelong reader.

If you are open-minded and kind, friendship will always find you. (There is nothing wrong with crying yourself to sleep over a spider spinning to her last to save a friend. Whether you are five, and your mom thinks she has traumatized you, or you are in your twenties. Ahem.)

A girl can accomplish anything she can put her observant mind to even if she’s wearing a pencil skirt. All she needs are two plucky friends and a convertible.

The answers are right there if you just look for them.

Slavery is a sickening blight on the world, and the damage people can do to innocence is heartbreaking. Ten years old is a tough time to learn that.

The love of a dog for his owner can only be overcome by his love for his sister.

If you ever run away, a museum is the best place to live.

Christmas should be simple. To be happy with a peppermint stick, a tin cup and a penny is the good life.

Dragons and music are beautiful and so is believing in them.

Some times surviving means being a real bratty, bitchy, tough broad.

Sometimes the belief in art transcends our differences.

Commitment can be tedious. You just got to hope it’s worth it in the end.

If Jesus had used dumbfucks instead of the meak, I’d be a more devout Christian.

And there is nothing wrong with reading for the absolute fun of the story.

What lessons have you learned from your favorite books?

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