Author Topic: "Stand Back!" said the elephant's backstory?  (Read 2233 times)

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Offline demosthenes

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"Stand Back!" said the elephant's backstory?
« on: February 11, 2013, 05:20:43 PM »
Standback said the Elephant I'm Going to Sneeze!
Grandpa Reads "Stand Back Said the Elephant I'm Going to SNEEZE" on Vimeo
DSFH Drama Club does Stand Back, Said the Elephant!
Reading along with Mom to our favorite book, Stand Back Said The Elephant I'm Going To Sneeze

I don't know about anyone else, but I've loved this book since I was a kid.  There's nothing like the incredibly long, drawn-out inevitability of it.  It is slightly disappointing that at the climax of his buildup the elephant is distracted enough that the incredible urge for release fades and the gigantic sneeze escapes him, but for me the buildup is usually better than the sneeze anyway.

Well, I've gotten to wonder recently, what do you think happened that made the elephant have to sneeze so badly? By the time the book starts, the sneeze is apparently already on its way.  The elephant has very little hope of staving it off for more than a few minutes and absolutely no chance of stopping it completely. What do you imagine the elephant did to try to ease the itch and prevent it from being coaxed into a sneeze between the time when he first started feeling a little sneezy and the point when he knew fighting it any longer would be hopeless and all that was left to do was simply announce his impending sneeze to the others?

Also, even though the sneeze was (barely) averted, it seems that after all that buildup even the smallest bothersome irritation would be enough to push the elephant's trunk over the edge.  Wouldn't it be great to write a sequel to this book?  If in the original book, the elephant has to sneeze and eventually the sneeze is interrupted by laughter, what if the story were reversed and the elephant's laughter was then halted by an irresistible provocation to sneeze.

Offline AMTW03

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Re: "Stand Back!" said the elephant's backstory?
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2013, 03:46:32 PM »
Aww yeah! I've loved this book since  I was little myself.  Nice finds with those videos  btw! I like that drama club enactment. :)

I remember my school librarian reading reading this book to my first grade class. It was one of those moments that started it all for me. Anyway, yeah it is a bummer that the elephant never actually sneezed, but yeah this buildup is awesome.

Those are great questions. I never thought of it that way. I would like to know what bothered the elephant so badly to the point where he had no chance of fighting off the sneeze, even though we see him twist his trunk around things and even submerge it in water during the story. Based on the description of having "such a twitch and an itch in (his) trunk, a bit of a tickle and even a prickle," my only thought would be that he inhaled something nasty.  I was thinking that maybe something living crawled up his trunk, like an insect, and kept crawling deeper, which would explain why it was so persistent. Although, I don't see how that would go away just by being scared. :P It is interesting that whatever it was could have just been scared away after all of that.

But anyhow, yes that would be awesome if someone wrote a sequel, and we actually got to see the sneeze :)