sideways stories

13. Rondi - Sideways Stories from Wayside School, by Louis Sachar
  • Joy: Love your hat, Rondi
  • Rondi: I'm not wearing a hat!
  • Joy: That's what makes it so interesting. Don't you think so, Leslie?
  • Leslie: Oh, yes. It's a very nice hat. Nice boots, too.
  • Rondi: I'm not wearing boots!
  • Joy: Yes, very nice boots. They go so well with your hat.
  • Rondi: What hat?
  • Leslie: Yes. Rondi showed excellent taste by not wearing the hat or the boots. They go so well together.
  • Everyone: *bursts out laughing*
  • Todd: What's so funny?
  • Jason: The joke Rondi didn't tell.
  • Calvin: Ask Rondi not to tell it again, Todd.
  • Todd: Rondi, don't tell it again. Hey everybody! Listen to Rondi's joke!
  • Mrs. Jewls: Rondi, I'm going to have to put your name under DISCIPLINE. The Classroom is not the place for jokes.
  • Rondi: But I didn't tell a joke!
  • Mrs. Jewls: Yes, I know, but the funniest jokes are the ones that remain untold.
It had something to do with the desert and something to do with my brain and something to do with a line I wrote in a notebook once, one of those throwaway thoughts you forget five minutes after you jot them down, except this time I didn’t. The line was: ‘What overwhelms is not the meaninglessness of the universe but the coexistence of an apparent meaninglessness with the astonishing interconnectedness of things.’
—  Brian Phillips, “Lost Highway,”

Harriet The Spy, The Secret Garden, Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Charlotte’s Web, Sideways Stories From Wayside School, Caddie Woodlawn, Robinson Crusoe, Island Of The Blue Dolphins, The Boxcar Children, Matilda, The Twits, No Promises In The Wind (OMG I’ve been trying to track this one down again and only found it again now) x

Looking back on it, my elementary school had us read lots of cool books. Also in third grade our teacher would have us buy our own versions so we could read along and I always did it.

Souichi Recommends Two:

Kyahahah! Welcome, welcome to… SOUICHI PRESENTS! A singularly focused horror blog, made all the more singular in how it occasionally completely forgets it’s originl goal of ‘just Junji ito’ manga and wanders off to do things like TODAYS FEATURE! 


As I explained in the LAST installment of this series(???), when I go to find new horror series it can be an… arduous task. If you go to a manga listing site and search ‘horror’ but use tag functions to exclude anything marked ‘action, romance, ecchi, adventure’ you get back approximately 20 series*. And five of them still have boobs on the cover. 

No really, go on. Guess. Juuuust try and figure out which one this is. I’ll wait.

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It’s like gravity is not even a thing for them.

Long before I’d ever read Haruki Murakami or David Mitchell, I was devouring stories by Louis Sachar. The first time I read ‘Sideways Stories from Wayside School,’ in maybe third grade, I felt like I’d been let in on a fantastic secret.

Adrienne LaFrance, in The Atlantic

Louis Sachar fans out there may like Adrienne LaFrance’s piece in The Atlantic today, about the enduring charm of the Wayside School.

Our own Nicole Cohen says, “My favorite story from Wayside is actually the from the second book in the series (Wayside School is Falling Down). It’s also the only story I remember – but I’ve always remembered it! It’s about a student, Calvin, whose parents offer to give him a tattoo for his birthday. He asks his class’ help to figure out what tattoo he should get and they propose snakes, eagles and dead rats. But in the end he gets a potato tattoo. Because potatoes make him happy. Gets me every time.“

For the record, I would TOTALLY get a potato tattoo. TOTALLY.

– Petra


Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sachar – 3-4

Do you sometimes get anxious or sad and want a distraction from things? Do you enjoy background noise that may or may not require focus? Do you like books? Do you like me? If the answer to any of those things is yes (or even if they’re all no), then this might be the thing for you to listen to! Sideways Stories is a book of goofy short stories targeted at the “juvenile” population. This specific post is of it spoken in my voice. Consider using your ears to listen to it, if you’d like!

Dear Steven Moffat,

As expected, you didn’t let me down. You never let me down. You always give me conversations about one thing that mean something else, emotions going sideways and haywire, a story structure that somehow suspends my understanding of the passage of time, and situations so clear and so ambiguous at the same time that I can interpret and re-interpret them for ages and continue to find new very true things in them. I love it all.

I know people have levelled criticism at you in recent years. None of us are perfect, people can level criticism at all of us. But another thing I admire about you, aside from the fact that I really love your stories, is that you take criticism on board and try to be better. So much so that it’s visible in your work, and it’s visible in The Lying Detective. That’s something I aspire: to not shy away from the struggle to get better, and to not rest, but to always keep growing and reaching.

My offer to buy you a pint will never expire.

Your constant fan,

Ivy Blossom


It’s been a long time coming, but it’s finally here–Matt and I want YOU to watch our super-fabulous marauders-fanfilm Q&A Response video series!

PART 1: Matt and I fight Tom Cruise, start a truly idiotic running joke, get harassed by mysterious off-screen voices, and introduce a large plastic horse. Featuring fan questions from prof-remus, gandalfthegreywarden, caspasta, and aryagotgendry!

PART 2: The gloves come off and Matt’s wig comes on in Part 2, as the actor playing Dorcas Meadows is finally revealed, I mispronounce URLs, and Matt and I say “bruh” more than necessary. I also ramble on about Regulus Black a lot. Featuring fan questions from Anonymous and schokokuchenstuff, and with special guests Sawyer (Severus Snape), Sara (Anaideia Avery), and Tori (our producer)!

PART 3: In this explosive final episode of the epic trilogy, I confuse Matt by talking about the greatest OC of all time, Coldsteel the Hedgeheg; Matt tries not to giggle as I describe a character as “firm,” the actor playing Peter Pettigrew BLOWS OUR MINDS, and we have a most-likely-copyright-infringing Beatles singalong. Featuring fan questions from Anonymous and stylesstilinski, and with special guests Sara (Anaideia Avery), Mac (Evan Rosier), Caroline (Marlene McKinnon), and the Tumblr-less Jez (our wardrobe supervisor/Beth Watson) and Leo (Peter Pettigrew)!

A huge thank you to everybody that sent in questions, all our friends that participated, and of course, the phenomenally talented and attractive datvikingtho, for editing all my incoherent rambling about Shakespeare into a wonderful video series. Can’t wait for you all to see the finished film!


Image courtesy Lydia Thompson/NPR

Louis Sachar knows a few things about writing for kids. His first book, Sideways Stories From Wayside School, came out in 1978 — and the wacky collection is still in print.

His 1999 Newbery Medal winner, Holes, centers on a boy wrongly confined to a juvenile detention facility. It’s mysterious and creepy, and it’s still flying off the shelves.

So if he says kids will love a scary eco-bioterror-mystery-thriller-comedy, you just might trust him.

Read (and hear) Sachar’s conversation with NPR’s Arun Rath about Fuzzy Mud here!

– Petra


Sideways Stories from Wayside School – chapters 28-30 – LAST READING!!

This was a fun one – thanks for listening! Next I’m gonna read Loser by Jerry Spinelli, one of my childhood (all-time) favorites, it’s a really cute book, I really hope you’ll try it!!!! That will be up either tomorrow or Monday, not yet decided :) Thanks a million and hope you enjoyed these stories!!!! Feel free to share feedback/reactions/thoughts/whatever – would mean the world to me! <3


Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sachar – 7-8

Haven’t heard the other chapters? Makes no difference! If you want to listen to it – because you’re feeling sad, because you’re anxious, because you’re bored, because you listen to every audio post that shows up on your dash – then there’s no prerequisite making it so you can’t! If you’re interested in things that require prerequisites, such as real full-length books, I’d recommend checking out the “holes masterpost” link on the left side of this tumblr! :)

anonymous asked:

Do you think that Laurel and Oliver relationship or supposed to be OTP of Arrow didn't work because of the cheating factor? Oliver slept with Sara while he's still with Laurel. So if you're Laurel, do you still be with your boyfriend after that happen ? So if the writers really want to set up Laurel and Oliver thing..why wrote it like that? As compare to Olicity, the way the writers set up this relationship is so different and because of the chemistry SA and EBR, it works right a way.

That is a very large percentage of my opinion on what happened with Lauriver - the cheating thing, with her sister, is extremely hard to get past, for sure. And then add on to it that during said cheating, her sister died at sea, and she wouldn’t have been there - she wouldn’t have died - if Oliver hadn’t taken her in the first place.

Can we really blame Laurel for not wanting anything to do with him when he gets back?

(And we already know he was a serial cheater - hello, Sandra Hawke, and his child he knows nothing about. Wait until Laurel hears about that.)

They had a poisonous relationship, as it was written on the show, before the island, and then he cheats on her with her sister and then gets her sister killed.

How do you get past that?

So why write it like that? They probably went into it as a lot of writers do: write as much fucked up shit as they possibly can, and spend the story untangling it. They set up as many problems between Oliver and Laurel as they possibly could, and they were going to use the course of the show to untangle those problems. Their intentions were to follow the course of the comics, I believe, with the Green Arrow and the Black Canary getting together. Not follow them exactly, but the goal was GA/BC.

Things don’t always go as planned, though, do they?

They sure couldn’t have predicted a random IT girl getting more of a reaction out of Oliver in the space of a few seconds vs. all the literal hours he spent with Laurel. They couldn’t have predicted the organic nature of Olicity, and how it carried itself vs. the writers carrying them (as they would have had to do with Lauriver, as they did do in Season 1). They couldn’t have predicted how beautiful the chemistry between Laurel and Tommy was going to be, and how sharp of a contrast it was to Lauriver.

The hurdles they threw at Lauriver should have been an overall series arc that would have culminated in them getting together in a healthy, strong relationship at the end.

Alas, a lot of other factors ended up being presented, and they dominated that story line - they were stronger, more believable and more interesting, and so they went where the strengths were vs. sticking to their original plan.

They could have stuck with the comic canon, but it would have killed the show. I honestly wasn’t into Arrow when it first started airing, I couldn’t get behind Lauriver, the stories were very dark without anything to root for, and we were given information about Oliver that was interesting, but not compelling.

Diggle brought some of that levity, but Felicity definitely did, IMO. Oliver needed to be seen as human, another side to the robotic man he was when he got back from Lian Yu, and the way they wrote Lauriver had Laurel pushing him closer towards the Arrow rather than Oliver Queen. We were never given any desire to have him tell Laurel who he was - literally within the first few episodes she called him a stone-cold killer, she couldn’t see past the mask to the man underneath. They gave me nothing to hold on to!

What if they’d taken away the sister story line completely?

What if they hadn’t had Laurel and Tommy get together?

What if Felicity had never been introduced, or never brought back?

What if EBR had been cast as Laurel - how would that have changed things?

What if CL had been cast as Laurel - how would that have changed things?

Amell and EBR’s chemistry 100% drove Olicity - it’s been admitted, by nearly everyone at this point - and that’s why it feels so organic and natural, because they took their time and they let it grow on its own. They forced Lauriver on us, without giving us a light at the end of the Lauriver tunnel (I’m sure it would have come about somehow, something to root for them, eventually, but they would have lost most of their audience by then).

It’s interesting to think about Oliver’s course if he hadn’t had a Felicity, or if her role had stayed small. Would it have been Laurel who helped him see the light? Would I have believed it? Probably not.

Oliver and Laurel were supposed to be the compelling factor in each other’s stories, but they weren’t. So, we got Oliver’s (Felicity, for sure, and Diggle, Roy, Thea, etc.), but where is Laurel’s? (Oh, right, they killed him at the end of Season 1, the bastards.)

And let’s not forget that CL sort of stole the Canary thunder with her portrayal of Sara - if they had taken out that entire story, they could have found a better way to introduce the Black Canary, given Laurel something to really bite into. The writers have robbed Laurel’s story foundations left and right, from Felicity to Sara, and it left us with a character that I do not enjoy watching.

(On another note, I think the introduction of Felicity threw Laurel’s story sideways, and they ended up rushing a lot of her characterization and growth to get her to being the Black Canary, which is so unfortunate, there was so much potential there. I’m interested to see how they pull her story back on line - they need to give her something other than being Oliver’s ex who threw on some leather when her sister died a second time.)


Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sachar – 5-6

The fun thing about this book in particular is that they’re just short stories…. so if this is the first time it’s come up on your dash, there’s no reason not to listen for a few minutes and see if you like it! It makes no difference if you haven’t ever read or listened to the chapters before these ones! :)

anonymous asked:

could you possibly write a zutara where katara is desperate to meet the blue spirit so she decides to get herself captured in the hopes that he'll save her. only problem is, zuko's the one she chose to capture her. kthanksbyeandiloveyourwriting

First, thank you so much for the compliment!! And second, I definitely twisted this prompt around so if you squint and look at this story sideways it kind of resembles what you asked for. I hope you enjoy it anyway, and check out the author notes at the end for more!  

Katara stared at the poster, transfixed. Water spots from the rain had blurred some of the detail, but the likeness was unmistakable. Her breath caught as she realized the implications. The Blue Spirit, she thought, when her brain finally started working again. Is coming here. She couldn’t contain it any more and jumped in excitement, not caring about the others at the bus stop. 

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