“The Hat and the Superglue” & “The Ghost”

If you’re joining me in reading “Matilda,” you should have read the next two chapters in the book. If you aren’t, you’re missing out!

The end of the second chapter left us with the knowledge that Matilda was planning on exacting revenge on her father in a way that we hope is delightfully mischievous. The title of the third chapter details what we can expect from Matilda’s revenge act – a hat and superglue. Matilda took her father’s favorite hat off of the coat rack and placed a thin line of superglue along the inside right before her father put it on his nasty head. Needless to say, hilarity ensues – which is basically the entirety of these two chapters. He struggles to get it off at work without ripping skin and hair off, so he is forced to wear all day at work, at home, to bed, and through to the next morning. Matilda’s mother decides to cut it off his head since they can’t rip it off, and he is left with a bald ring of missing hair and bits of leather stuck to his forehead (which Matilda makes a scathing comment about). She’s bitingly sarcastic, and I love it.

After the hat incident, the Wormwood household seemed to be calm enough. However, you can imagine that didn’t last very long considering Mr. Wormwood incessant bullying. After a presumably bad day at work, Mr. Wormwood decides to take his anger out on poor Matilda. We discover that Matilda’s father can’t read, so he takes his anger out on her because she can read and does so in front of him with no remorse. Which, let’s be honest, how is she supposed to know that you can’t read when you make no mention of it whatsoever? That’s awfully presumptuous of you, Mr. Wormwood. Anyway, I digress. He destroys the library book she was reading simply because he can and he’s angry (I don’t condone the destroying of books, but I will say that I personally did not like the book he did destroy, so meh). With this most recent act of aggression, Matilda decides to have some more fun, and this time, she brings a friend. Matilda’s friend Fred has a bird that he praises all the time for his ability to talk, so she makes a visit and asks to borrow Chopper for one night. After some convincing (and by some, I mean hardly any), Fred allows Matilda to borrow Chopper for the fair price of what I can only assume is Matilda’s allowance (gotta love British terms). She takes the talking bird in his cage and places him up the chimney before her family gets home and patiently waits for the fun to begin. Eventually, the bird talks while hiding in the chimney and Matilda’s family freaks. An acting Matilda and her family look for burglars, they find none, and with Matilda’s subtle suggestion, they all assume it’s a ghost and run. So you aren’t concerned about the bird, he was safely returned to Fred, if only a little disgruntled.

What we know about Matilda so far:

  • She has a flair for mischief.
  • She still hates bullies.

Characters we’ve met so far (other than those we’ve already met):

  • Fred: Matilda’s friend, owns a talking bird, and doesn’t mind handing over his bird to a friend if said friend pays him
  • Chopper: Fred’s talking bird

Until next post,

C

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