When I Grow Up: Careers For Children's Book Characters
Like Peter Pan, plenty of us have wished that we would never grow up. But alas, Neverland isn't a real place, so life goes on--children become adults, and those adults have their own children. But what about fictional characters? Ever wondered what would happen if they, like us, had to grow up and get a job to pay the bills? Here are our best guesses at dream jobs and career realities for some familiar names from kiddie lit.
Character: Veruca Salt
Career dream: Veruca has no idea what she wants to be, but she can give you her mile-long shopping list. After her adventure at Willy Wonka's factory, at least she knows for sure that she doesn't want a career involving sweets.
Career reality: When Veruca decided not to follow in the family business at her father's peanut-shelling factory, she was left with only with her inheritance and a complete lack of any skill set. She can currently be seen on her very own reality show on the E! network, just like the Kardashians.
Career dream: A hermit who lives in the Australian outback, because nothing can go wrong there.
Career reality: Crisis counselor. It pays better--plus, if anyone can relate to having a hard time, it's Alexander, who assures us all that even folks in Australia have bad days.
Career dream: We've lost track of all of Olivia's big dreams, from a painter to a circus ringmaster and, most recently, a fairy princess.
Career reality: Drama teacher. This little piggy has always had a flair for the dramatic.
Character: Paddington Bear
Career dream: World traveler. The bear was always interested in learning more about his Peruvian origins, and finding out just how he came to London's Paddington station.
Career reality: Purveyor of artisanal marmalade. World travel costs money, and Paddington makes his at local farmer's markets.
Career dream: Forest ranger. How else will the wild beasts stay tame?
Career reality: Children's psychologist. Rather than send their children to bed without dinner, now parents send their unruly kids to Max.
Character: Curious George
Career dream: To be the first primate investigative journalist. A life of asking questions and pushing the limits? Yes, please.
Career reality: Permanent graduate student. What better way to enjoy a life of curiosities than studying all sorts of things? Even if he has to call the Man in the Yellow Hat for a loan every so often.