Study Guide

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time Chapter 47

By Mark Haddon

Chapter 47

  • Okay, now we're back in the present (you know, the whole curious incident present). Christopher takes the bus to school the next morning.
  • They pass four red cars in a row, which means it is a "Good Day," so Christopher decides not to be sad about Wellington anymore.
  • Our narrator then explains the difference between a "Good Day" and a "Quite Good Day" and a "Super Good Day" (which are, of course, all awesome); and a "Black Day" ("a day when I don't speak to anyone and sit on my own reading books and don't eat my lunch and Take No Risks" [47.2]).
  • Long story short: the quality of the day depends on which cars he sees while he's riding the bus. Red cars are good; yellow cars are bad.
  • The school psychologist once told him that it's random and illogical being so affected by cars like that (and particularly strange because Christopher is otherwise a very logical guy). But Christopher argues that it's no more illogical to be affected by red and yellow cars than it is to be affected by the weather – to be happy if it's sunny and sad if it's cloudy. Touché!
  • Christopher then offers up some more examples of so-called "normal" behavior being illogical, and his own "unusual" behavior being really quite normal.
  • He recalls the school psychologist asking some other things, like whether it makes him feel safe to always have things in a nice order (answer: yes) and whether he doesn't like it when things change (answer: he wouldn't mind changing if he were changing into an astronaut).
  • Christopher says he probably won't become an astronaut, but he's definitely going to go to university (as they call it in the UK) to study Mathematics or Physics.
  • After that little digression, we hear more about his Good Day. Because it's a Good Day, he decides to try to figure out who killed Wellington, "because a Good Day is a day for projects and planning things" (47.15). Naturally.
  • Siobhan (his teacher) says that it's is a story-writing day, so maybe he should write a story about the night he found Wellington.
  • "And that is when I started writing this" (47.17).