“Without Stories, we are all just eating machines with shoes” ~~~~Roald Dahl, born on this day, in 1916.
His first book, “The Gremlins,” was written in 1943. The story told of mythical creatures, gremlins.
Pilots of the Royal Air Force often told stories of unexplainable mishaps aboard flights, strange mechanical failures; the culprits thought to be mischievous and dangerous creatures of legend. We all remember that Twilight Zone episode, starring a young William Shatner, before he boarded another aircraft.
Dahl’s life was filled with tragedy from his childhood years. He was no stranger to gremlins. He, himself, was a Royal Air Force Pilot, shot down and seriously wounded. He kept part of his leg bone, a relic of his injury,as a paperweight on his desk….
Curious knickknack, though quite personal……
Whatever gremlins in his mind brought thoughts to his pen, he created stories that entertain children and parents throughout the generations.
“James and the Giant Peach” and “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” would achieve bestselling status for him. My daughter recently saw “Matilda” on Broadway. She said it was the best show she had ever seen on the NY stage.
Perhaps his tragedies in life enabled him to journey and find solace in an inner world of imagination. A world only known to the young and young at heart….a world of gremlins and giant peaches.
His pen was his escape route….his stories the escape for countless readers.
He wrote on his farm, he took breaks in between to tend to his animals. Perhaps they had been gentler to him than life had been.
Happy Birthday Roald….share a piece of chocolate cake with peach filling with some hungry gremlins in whatever place our imaginations can only dream of.