Soupy Saturdays with the Pain & The Great One
Soupy Saturdays with the Pain & The Great One

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Annotation: Revisits the sometimes challenging relationship between a six-year-old (The Pain) and his eight-year-old sister (The Great One).
Catalog Number: #37685
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
All Formats: Search
Publisher: Random House
Copyright Date: 2007
Edition Date: 2009
Illustrator: Stevenson, James,
Pages: 108 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-440-42092-X Perma-Bound: 0-605-25859-7
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-440-42092-7 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-25859-4
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 2006026892
Dimensions: 20 cm.
Language: English
Reviewing Agencies: - Find Other Reviewed Titles
Kirkus Reviews
Publishers Weekly
School Library Journal
Wilson's Children's Catalog
Word Count: 9,935
Reading Level: 2.8
Interest Level: 1-4
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 2.8 / points: 1.0 / quiz: 116708 / grade: Lower Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:2.4 / points:5.0 / quiz:Q41693
Lexile: 540L

Mr. Soupy
On Saturdays we do errands with Dad. He's good at errands. Today, even though it was really warm, the Pain was wearing earmuffs. Big fluffy ones. Our first stop was the shoe store. The shoe salesman took one look at the Pain and said, "We have some nice snow boots on sale. Half price."
"Why would I want snow boots in May?" the Pain asked.
The shoe man shrugged. "Looks like you're getting ready for winter," he said, pointing to the Pain's earmuffs.
"I'm getting ready for a haircut," the Pain told him.
"Oh," the shoe salesman said, as if that made perfect sense.
The Pain got a pair of sandals. So did I.
From the shoe store the three of us walked up the street to Mr. Soupy's. Mr. Soupy is our haircutter. You have to be under twelve to have Mr. Soupy cut your hair. In the window of his shop there's a sign. It says Mr. Soupy sings while he snips your hair. "No more than an inch," I reminded him when it was my turn.
"A big inch or a little inch?" Mr. Soupy sang.
"A little inch," I said.
I knew when Mr. Soupy was done because he whipped off my cape and shook out the hair. I watched as it floated to the floor. It looked like more than an inch to me.
Then it was the Pain's turn. But he was still outside. He looked over at Dad. Dad was in the waiting area, reading a magazine. Then the Pain looked at me.
"What?" I said, even though I knew what. The Pain is scared of haircuts. He didn't used to be scared. Nobody knows why he's suddenly weird about them. Maybe he knows. But if he does, he's not telling.
Finally, he climbed up into the chair.
"Hmmm . . ." Mr. Soupy said, walking around him. "It's hard to give a good haircut when a person is wearing earmuffs."
The Pain just sat in the chair pretending he couldn't hear a word. I lifted one of his earmuffs halfway off and talked right into his ear. "Mr. Soupy says he can't give you a good haircut while you're wearing earmuffs."
As soon as I said it I started wondering if Mr. Soupy is his real name. Probably not. It's probably just some name he invented. If it is his real name I wonder if it's his first name or last? Probably his last. I wonder what his first name is? Sam Soupy? Scott Soupy? Zachariah Soupy?
Mr. Soupy tried to get the Pain to take off his earmuffs. He made silly faces. He did a wild dance. But he wasn't getting anywhere. The Pain just sat there.
Finally, I said, "Why don't you try it with just one ear covered? That way, if Mr. Soupy doesn't cut off your first ear you'll know you're safe."
The Pain didn't answer.
"Look around," I told him. "Do you see anyone without two ears?"
The Pain looked at the kids who were waiting.
They looked back at him.
"That doesn't mean it can't happen," he said. "Besides, if Mr. Soupy cut off your ear would you come back?"
"The only cut you get at my shop is a haircut!" Mr. Soupy sang. Then he laughed at his own joke.
I laughed with him.
But the Pain didn't even smile.
"You can cut the back," the Pain told Mr. Soupy. "You can cut the front. But you can't cut around my ears. Those are the rules."
"Okay," Mr. Soupy said. "No problem."
"You can do that?" the Pain asked.
"Won't he look funny?" I said.
"Sure," Mr. Soupy said. "But he didn't say he cared about looking funny."
Mr. Soupy raised his scissors to the Pain's head. As soon as he did, the Pain let out a wail. . . . "Waaahhhh!!!"
That got Dad's attention. He came over to the chair. "What's up?" Dad asked.
Mr. Soupy put down his scissors and said, "I give up!"
"You can't give up," Dad said. "You're Mr. Soupy. You get the job done!"
Mr. Soupy sighed. "Bring him back in a few days," he told Dad. "When I don't have a crowd waiting."

Excerpted from Soupy Saturdays with the Pain and the Great One by Judy Blume
All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

My sister's name is Abigail. I call her The Great One because she thinks she's so great. Who cares if she's in third grade and I'm just in first?

My brother's name is Jacob Edward, but everyone calls him Jake. Everyone but me. I call him The Pain because that's what he is. He's a first-grade pain. I'll always know exactly what he's thinking. That's just the way it is.

These seven warm-hearted stories will give readers a peek at how a brother and sister relate to each other.

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