Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Mary Poppins: great human

An ape can pick up a lot of bad habits during infancy. That’s why we hairy apes have a minimalist approach to nurturing our young. We cuddle them, protect them and feed them, in the hope that they will grow up to become cuddlers, protectors and feeders. Human parents, of course, have far greater ambitions for their offspring. But in striving to mould their young they tend to make the most frightful blunders, causing the little scamps to grow up with a variety of vexatious foibles. So the job is often contracted out to a qualified nanny, who supposedly knows the ropes in the child-rearing field.

Now employing a nanny is no guarantee that your children will turn out alright. If she spoils them, they’ll grow up believing the sun shines out of their smooth little bottoms. And if she’s too stern with the boys, they’ll turn into the sort of men who make up the clientele of Zelda the Warrior Queen or Miss Whiplash. Rearing human infants is a highly subtle art, which is why the first-rate nanny is as rare as an anorexic hippo. And the one nanny who stands out as a giant in the field – practically perfect in every way, one might say – is Miss Mary Poppins.

The essence of the Poppins genius is the manner in which she exercises authority. Needless to say, she knows what’s best for the children entrusted to her care. But in getting them to do what they must, she never scolds them or gets into a battle of wills. Instead, she is a master of what Bruce Lee, the karate-chopping Chinaman, called “the art of fighting without fighting”. When the kiddies make a fuss, she will perplex them with a clever rhyme, possibly followed by a little song, which invariably beguiles the little imps into obedience. On rare occasions magic is employed as a shock and awe tactic. The result is that her charges are contented and well-behaved without recourse to the hairbrush on the backside or the pinch on the ear lobe.

The other key ingredient of the Poppins phenomenon is a quality noted by Moshe Dayan, the great Hebrew warrior – she never orders her troops into battle, she always leads them into battle. When the children take their medicine, she takes it too. She doesn’t have to tell them to be polite to Bert, the bizarre mock-cockney chimneysweep, because they follow her example. And when the children jump magically into cartoon-land, she leads the way, playing a full role in the subsequent merry-making rather than hanging back and chatting with the other nannies.

Being a woman of excellence, Mary Poppins is bound to have a few resentful detractors. They might ask, rhetorically, why a woman who loves children so much doesn’t have her own, hinting crudely at a same-sex preference. The answer, of course, is that she probably did have plans to raise her own family. She was certainly young enough to bear children and charming enough to attract many suitors. The main problem, I fear, would be finding a man worthy of her – one who could adore her body without fearing the power of her mind. Is there such a man?

To my male human readers I issue the following challenge: Would you be man enough to woo a Mary Poppins, to wine her, and dine her, and pleasure her where it pleases her?

"...and pleasure her where it pleases her?"

Are we talking "the tradesman's" here? Because I don't like that.
Those were my thoughts, Doc. I'm game for most places, but I'd never go near the poo hole. But GB is right on the substance. Julie Andrews was far more attractive as Mary Poppins than that treacle tart in the 'Sound of Music'.
I would rather be burnt on the back of the hand by a thin-lipped evil housekeeper a thousand times over than suffer the indignity of that Poppins wench singing at me once. I have always hated that evil viper and her spoon full of sugar codology. Frankly, piercing the chocolate starfish is too good for her. I blunderbuss her out of the sky if I could.
So you'd prefer your nanny to give you the hairbrush on the bum, FMC? If so, we need to get together.
Oh Tarzan, there can be only one, didn't you ever watch Highlander? I'm always gonna be the one with the whip/riding crop/set of pliers.
mmmmm, riding crop, the creak of leather, ahhhhhhh
Am I really the only one who'd be prepared to accept the Poppins Challenge?
I think I'd prefer the Mary Poppins nanny style to the daddy-marryin' Maria. Who wants clothing made out of the curtains? I would have been beaten by the school bully to within an inch of my life in such a kit.

Having said that, wasn't Dick vanDyke's 'cockney' accent about the worst thing anybody's ever heard? It made my ears bleed, even as a wee 'un. Embarrassing!
I assume we're talking the Disney flick as opposed to the original children's literature. That said,
Having watched this movie recently (I have a four year old daughter) is seems as if there were some "history" between the Mary Poppins character and the abysimally accented Bert. (Andraste, I'm a Yank and I found that accent atrocious!)
The character of Bert, as shown in the movie, seemed to honestly be besotted with Mary based on her amazingness as opposed to her appearance (although he does compliment her on her beauty during the "Jolly Holiday" scene).
The relationship falls apart near the end, however, when Bert's inappropriate advances on the young girl-child gets him in trouble with Mary Poppin's anthropomorphic bird-umbrella, which was a witness to the depraved act.
Well I'd fuck her, but I'd be thinking of Anne Robinson
F'koff we know you'd be thinking about Sniff the Cheese in her daddy's pool or that Bjork piece.

I have fond memories of that film and even liked DVD's accent, (I'm Scotch, it sounded genuine to me) and I can't think of the bit that SafeT's alluding to. I can sing the songs even now.

Is no one going to ask Splat what the challange is?
Hats off to Splat for being the only one to accept the challenge without reservation. Tarzan was a conditional 'yes' provided he didn't have to lick anyone's anus and El B obviously wouldn't be able to fulfill the wining and dining requirements.
dr maroon:
Yeah, there was the shower scene where Bert was supposed to be helping bathe the children and hilarity ensued.
There was a shower scene?! Wow, my oblivious young mind must have missed that one... Either that, or it scarred me for life, unbeknownst to me...
I bet even Merry had a G-spot ~ how hard could it be, fella's? Find that, and you're already half-way there! A little culture here and there, flowers every now and again, listen to her songs, prance about with her once in a while, and she's yours for the duration. She's so much woman, she'll take care of the rest.... hmmm... sounds oddly familiar.. I think that little formula might just work on EVERY female ~ what a concept ~
Just think, with all that singing, likely she's a real screamer ~ obviously very vocal! Probably need some stamina, however... Buck up, little campers, accept the challenge, live up to your manly pissing contest-ishness!
There is much in what you say, Miss Redhead, but don't you think a lot of men would be intimidated by her high intelligence, to say nothing of her magical powers? Give Splat guy some credit.
magical shmagical ~ those benefits only make it easier for her to think up new and ever-spicy ways of enticement, even as an old granny, she'll be rockin the casbah! When you're intelligent AND magical, why, every day is a holiday with Merry!

And Splat, I'm proud of you, your stamina and duration must be up to par! the rest of you, c'mon, step it up men, this is a PISSIN contest! Pull out the goods and start hosin'!
Waste of fucking time - as soon as the wind changed, she'd be off
here here, el b!
Women like this speak honestly of loving one forever, but this is because they can't see the boredom that inevitably sets in when they find their new mate can't dance in blackface while speaking in atrocious faux cockney.
I love Mary Poppins. Great blog post, matey.
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