Recently, my daughter asked me to check whether it was really Johney Flynn 👦 who drowned the cat 🐈(Ding-Dong-Bell-Pussy-in-the-well fame). All of a sudden, I started wondering how we can be sure of certain facts told in Nursery Rhymes.
I mean, the cat 🐈 could certainly not tell who threw her in the well and this Johney Flynn 👦 doesnot seem like a I-cannot-tell-a-lie kind of person. So, it is simply Tommy Stout’s word against his. Yet, through the centuries of this rhyme’s existence (first recorded in 1580 AD), we continue to blame him for being ‘a naughty boy who drowned a poor pussy cat’. I wouldn’t be surprised if he was bullied as a cat drowner and grew up to be an emotionally defunct serial-cat-murderer, seeking revenge for the unjustified blame.
Similarly, people speak of Humpty Dumpty 🥚 as a careless egg who sat on a wall and fell. Nobody cared to explain why king’s horses 🐎 and men 👮 were involved in trying to put it together. Was he a kin of the king? Was he a victim of a conspiracy? Did someone push him off the wall?
And what about Jack and Gill 👫? How did they fall? How can we merrily sing about someone breaking their head 🤕?
All these questions have taken away my faith from all the nursery rhymes I have ever read. I fear a conspiracy behind every story now. I am scared someday someone will tell me that Santa Claus 🎅 doesnot exist…