Sunday, April 23, 2006

#125 - An Hour (or Two) in Jellyville

Life is interesting in Jellyville. I spent some time there yesterday, and I can tell you that Jellyville is nothing approaching a utopia, even though its primary citizen appears to have totalitarian control over all aspects of life. Everything has a purpose in Jellyville. However, those purposes appear to rotate at random, depending on the whims of its benevolent dictatress.

I found out, for example, that not only does Hogwarts exist in Jellyville, but so also does Hogwarts Junior. "There's a Hogwarts Junior?" I asked. "Yep. That's for kids who are six, seven, eight, nine, and ten," came the reply. "Does anyone else know about this?" I inquired. "Only Jellyville people," she replied.

Convenient, I must say. People in Jellyville have a lady president. Or they will, at least, when said primary citizen reaches the proper age. Whatever that may be. I think she's still a little fuzzy on the whole political process. "When I'm the president, I'll make sure everyone does their chores," said the future world leader. This is sound thinking. Also it probably lets her off the hook since everyone else will be doing chores, but she'll be doing president stuff. I didn't bother to ask her whether I was included in the masses of chore-doers.

There will be playgrounds in every store in Jellyville. There was a deplorable lack of playgrounds in every store we visited yesterday, although Payless at least had a video of Toy Story II playing while we were buying shoes for Citizen Prime. I let her take her wand into the shoe store on the premise that no one expects to see wands in a shoe store and I therefore won't be made to pay for it. She kept it hidden in a secret pocket of her denim jacket until the jacket got a little warm in the store. Then Daddy had to hold it. Daddies are jacket holders in Jellyville.

I put my foot down when we went to WalMart, though. "No wands in WalMart," said The Daddy. "Kids who go to Hogwarts Junior can take their wands everywhere. I wonder if Doodle would like me to turn her into a puppy?" She listed every one of her friends and wondered out loud what they'd like to be turned into. One friend would be an elephant, and the other one would be an ant, and of course, being friends, the ant and the elephant would have to hug, and wouldn't that look funny? An ant hugging an elephant? But maybe she wouldn't want to be an ant, so I could turn her into a chicken instead.

Daddy led Citizen Prime deep into the bowels of WalMart in a desperate search for a garden lighthouse. Since the gardener came I now have a basically blank slate with which to work, and Mrs. Woody and I love lighthouses. WalMart just happened to carry a solar-powered lighthouse that was perfect for our purposes, and we picked one up for an early Mothers Day present. "There are lots of flowers in Jellyville," came the pronouncement when we wandered through the Garden Center. "They're mostly purple, but we have some pink ones, too, so Doodle will like them." I wonder whose favorite color is purple?

My visit with Jellyville was a brief one, but highly instructive. I suspect it will not be my last. Jellyville, as a concept, has been around for a few weeks now. I'd like to bet it goes back even further, but I've only actually heard the name for the last couple of months. The town has been taking shape, I'm sure, for a few years, and it's social structures have been refined over the months as Jelly's own real-life experiences have broadened. She has a little network of friends whom she loves dearly. Her sister alternately is her best playmate and her most annoying nemesis. If Jelly is Citizen Prime, then Doodle is Secretary of State.

In constant motion, the imagine-verse is. If Hubble ever finds it, I suspect many current mysteries of science will finally be answered.

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