I was reading one of the threads that is part of the maelstrom currently raging in the Pit. This particular thread was about the guy who took too many doughnuts. Several people suggested that the next time doughnuts, or any other delicacy, appeared in the breakroom, that a generous portion be set aside for Mr. X, with a sign reading, “For Mr. X only.”
Immediately, I thought of one of the Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle stories: the one about the kid who wouldn’t share. Mrs. P-W’s solution was for his parents to mark everything of his: “Dick’s Bookbag: Don’t Touch!” “Dick’s Toothbrush: Don’t Touch!”. This didn’t go over well, especially at school, with older boys tossing “Dick’s Apple” around at lunchtime and some girls putting a sign on his back: “This is Dick: Don’t Touch!”
I loved Mrs. P-W! I like how the books have different themes. In the first book, the solution was for the kid to get absolutely their own way, and see where it got them. My favorite is the one where the boy had all these toys, each with infinite small parts, and then wouldn’t pick up after himself. Mom stopped cleaning his room, and he gradually walled himself in, until he could just barely see out the window to the other kids in his driveway. “We’re going to the circus! Come on along!” So he just had to clean his way out of the room. (And they were still waiting?) The second was the one where the parents were given kits to exaggerate the problem. The “Don’t Touch!” story was one of those: the kit had stickers and icing and cards and stuff to mark property with. The third was the one with “magical” solutions. I didn’t read that one as much, but I remember the two little girls who were always whispering and gossiping, and were given Whisper Sticks, which made them entirely mute. The fourth one took place on a farm, and was corollary to the first: instead of getting to do what they wanted to, kids had to do what they insisted they could not do, like take care of pets, or keep track of their possessions.
Well, that was a thesis! Anyone else remember Mrs. P-W?