Friday, March 28, 2008

Catalina Magdalena

When I was younger I went to church camp several years. But I have never heard the Catalina Magdalena song. Have you? At the back of the Tedd Arnold book, whose full name is Catalina Magdalena Hoopensteiner Wallendiner Hogan Logan Bogan Was Her Name, there is an explanation about the song. Arnold says there are many versions of this old camp song, but he likes his the best.

Catalina's parents have a habit of overdoing things, like taking way too many pictures and giving her way too long of a name. Catalina grows to show some odd characteristics, like two-toned hair, cross-eyes, and long, wiry legs. She's not the most dainty of girls, but she finds love and gets married, having to add one more name to her already long handle.

The infectious cadence of the song is of course the best part of Catalina Magdalena. My favorite stanza is:

She had two holes in the bottom of her nose-

One for her fingers and one for her toes.

Catalina Magdalena....

I'd type out all of the lyrics, but the title page says the text is copywrited. I'm not sure how that is possible, since Arnold explicitely states that he did not write this song. But it's Scholastic, and I guess they can do whatever they want.

Arnold does a great job of interpreting the lyrics in the illustrations. He adds a great deal of detail, from the multiple baby name books in the Bobans' house to the new baby with three hair colors. The eyes on the front cover have movable pupils that your kids can try to cross.

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