Stew (see scurvy)

Ven vendersleighc at
Tue Dec 16 23:02:24 EST 2003

Minnow reminisced

<There's a perfectly horrid Victorian story for 
children I once read, about
a little girl who longed for the pretty coloured 
jar in the chemist's
window; so her mother said she could have that or

she could have a new pair
of shoes as a birthday present, and she very 
properly opted for the jar she
really wanted.  Then she wasn't allowed to go to 
a party when *everyone
else did*, because her shoes were not smart 
enough, and the glass jar
turned out to be just coloured water, and the 
moral was that one should
prefer substance over ideals, or some such yucky 

*I* felt the message was that she had a useless 
horrible mother, because
shoes you had to have anyway was a beastly mean 
birthday present.

Does anyone happen to know the story I'm talking 
about?  I'd love to find
out whether my seven-year-old reading of the 
thing as yucky was really
justified... but since I can remember neither 
title nor author I'm a bit

I'm sure I read this too, and I agree
wholeheartedly  about the mother. I think I also
took on board the idea that things in shop
windows (or adverts) may lose their appeal when
you get them home. However I couldn't really see
why that should be true of the jar, so long as
you kept the water in  it could look as good in a
bedroom window as it did in the shop.
Incidentally I wonder if the chemist charged as
much for his jar of coloured water as the shoes
would have cost or did Mummy buy herself a little
trinket as well!

Unfortunately my brain is refusing to give up the
source of this story.


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