“Llama Llama Red Pajama” is a children’s book about a llama with night terrors and his long-suffering mother.
We start out the story with Little Llama (who I say looks like a Gregory) getting ready for bed with a stuffed animal who appears to be a terror-stricken version of himself. Given his sleep issues, that is not going to help matters. At all.
Gregory’s wonderful mother, a pearl-wearing June Cleaver kind of llama, reads her son a story, gives him a kiss, and then goes downstairs have a little “me time.” “Me time,” of course, means doing dishes by herself while staring out a window into the dark, dark night.
As is typical of children and, apparently, Cria (that’s what baby llamas are called, so now we’ve all learned something) Gregory decides he wants a glass of water within .5 seconds of his mother leaving. It was either going to be that or a dropped stuffy or an uneven blanket or the bedroom door is too open or too closed…you know how it goes. So Gregory calls to his mom for some water. She tells him she’ll be in there in one freakin’ second. But before she can rush to the aid of her parched son, the phone rings – a landline, old-school phone. Either this is one ironic hipster llama family or this story is set in the 1980’s. I vote hipster, so I’ll need to change Gregory’s name to something more appropriate.
Ansel Morning Jacket Llama starts crying because his mother hasn’t answered his call. We see that is because she is hoof-deep in dishes while balancing the phone to her ear, no doubt speaking with Ansel’s therapist, or perhaps with Ansel’s father who is telling her that he won’t be home for another hour or so. Whoever it is, she ain’t smiling.
Well, Gregory starts to fret because he doesn’t have his glass of water, which he wouldn’t need if he would just go to sleep. Using his poor logical reasoning skills, Ansel starts worrying that the reason June Llama hasn’t rushed upstairs yet is because she is no longer in the building. He thinks that June Cleaver Llama is gone. Now, this is a discussion I have had with my own children numerous times. I have never understood exactly why they think I would leave them alone at night and where I would be going. Have I ever abandoned you before? No? Then why now? WHY..NOW?
Sorry. Sore spot.
Poor little Ansel starts freaking out so mama drops everything and races upstairs, convinced that her child is bleeding and/or in the process of being abducted. But he’s not. Which is good, of course, if a little exasperating. Just once you’d like to run in response to a screaming child and find a man-sized rat in the room instead of a water bottle that’s just barely out of reach. June is pissed but quickly recovers and turns it into a sweet lesson about patience, gives him another kiss, and Gregory goes to sleep while she heads back downstairs to pull the phone out of the sink water and wonder what happened to her life.
She never does get him that glass of water, by the way.
Burn, Mama Llama.