Caviar versus crisps
“And some more baked beans, while we’re at it,” he said, looking round the empty larder.
Though Caspar knew this was only a joke, no one trusted the Ogre to go shopping. They all said they would go too and crammed themselves into the car. There Malcolm produced pencil and paper, rested the paper on Caspar’s back and made a list of essentials. It began with tinned salmon, because Malcolm liked it, and went on to caviare, because Gwinny said she had never had any.
“Put down porridge,” said the Ogre.
“Two dozen doughnuts, Malcolm,” said Johnny.
While the Ogre drove towards the shopping centre and the list lengthened, a curious smell began to fill the packed car. Caspar sniffed. It reminded him disturbingly of some of the smells Johnny had produced with the chemistry set. Douglas was sniffing too. They exchanged glances. But, for the moment, the main worry was the shopping list. Douglas took it away from Malcolm.
“We don’t want,” he said, crossing things out vigorously, “salmon, caviare, porridge,
peanuts, or more than a dozen doughnuts. But you haven’t put in sandwich spread.” And
he put it in.
“Why sandwich spread, just because you like it?” Johnny demanded belligerently. “Why
can’t Malcolm have salmon?”
“Douglas,” said the Ogre, “stop being so domineering and allow each of us one luxury.
Mine’s porridge. Gwinny can have caviare if she insists – though, honestly, Gwinny, you’d be better off with crisps – and then we’ll buy a few optional extras like eggs, bread and butter.”
“Do I get more crisps for the same money?” asked Gwinny.
“About a hundred times more,” said Caspar.
“Then put me down crisps,” said Gwinny.
Extract from the book The Ogre Downstairs
By Diana Wynne Jones
All rights reserved.
London: CollinsVoyager, 2003
Call Number: J English JON
Extract contributed by Sim Khai Leng
Available at NLB
Title: Black Beauty
By Anna Sewell; retold by L.L. Owens
Call Number: J English OWE
Title: Bridge to Terabithia
By Katherine Paterson
Call Number: J English PAT
Title: Howl’s Moving Castle
By Diana Wynne Jones
Call Number: Y English JON
Does getting more of something mean that it is better?