Last night I went to a dinner party at which some of the guests (Gregory Maguire, Neil Gaiman) were writers of fantasy, one was a writer about fantasy (Maria Tatar) and others were artists of various sorts: a filmmaker, a rock musician, et al)...and during dinner the question came up: which character from a children's book...a fantasy...would you like to be?
A lot of people chose critters from Wind in the Willows. Neil said Badger. I think it was filmmaker Chris who chose Rat and Mole, for the messing around in boats. And Gregory went for the Darling boys in Peter Pan: not Wendy, but the her two brothers; he liked being on the periphery, he said.
The rock performer Amanda Palmer said The Cat in the Hat....she pointed out that the cat in the hat goes into people's houses, creates chaos, then leaves. I guess that's what a rock star does, as well, so it was the right choice for her.
When faced with such questions...which usually happens around a dinner table...I always feel rushed and wish I had more time to consider it deeply. But I said Stuart Little, I guess because his smallness, his yearning quality, and his optimism appeal to me; and in the light of day, 24 hours later, I still like my choice okay.
I am going to be sorry to move away from Cambridge, which has always been the type of place where such dinner parties happen....