Vilde Chayas

I’m the first person to ‘fess up to my Maurice Sendak obsession — Where the Wild Things Are is the only book that my daughter actually asks for on her own. (The fact that I toss her around during the Wild Rumpus probably has a lot to do with it, but I think she admires the strong narrative tone, too.)

Anyway, I kept telling everyone that the Wild Things themselves were given traditional Yiddish names from the 1940s and ’50s: Moishe, Emil, and Tzippy, but no one seemed to believe me — even when I tracked down references).

Anyway, here’s a site where you can buy mini-Wild Things of your own — named, as it turns out, after Sendak’s uncles and aunts. Even the term “Wild Things” comes from the Yiddish vilde chaya, which is what your grandmother called you after you had a little too much salt water taffy and were leaping on l the furniture.

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