In season one, episode two of A Series of Unfortunate Events, the children ask Justice Strauss for certain books.

She says:

Well, I do have a section on rashes.
It's right next to Chinese cars.

Now as I understand the series so far, a lot of stuff is placed with context and meaning. So what relevance have chinese cars to rashes?

I assume there could be a relation the the real cause of Klaus' bruises or the Baudelaire children's whole situation as well.

up vote 4 down vote accepted

Oh, it's quite simple really. It's alphabetical.

Chinese word for car is 汽車

which is anglicized as Qìchē and read as Quizhe, thus making it after the word Quiz. R goes after letter Q in the alphabet.

It is believable that the word Qìchē is the last section in the library's Q section before the R section, while the "Rash" section is possibly the first section in the library's R section. It might be the small or "weird" library, having many books on odd subjects.

That is if you ignore other words starting with R which would come before the word rash, such as

race (verb)

racial (adjective)


radical (adjective)

radio (noun)


rail (noun)

railroad (noun)


rain forest

raise (verb)

range (noun)

rank (noun)

rapid (adjective)

rare (adjective)


It should also be pointed out that almost all those previous words when read start with Re- while the rash is the first one which actually reads like Ra-. So the library might be arranged by phonetic pronunciation of the words and not how they are spelled.

  • 1
    This is fantastic :) – npst Dec 4 at 11:35

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