Teeny Poll

Heidi Klum

Quarantine! Stat!

White Fever!

Dear Manufacturers of This Shoe,

May I ask, what were you thinking? Were you inspired perhaps by the ingestion of too many Tequila Sunrises and decided that yes, the market for white oxfords was one that was just too large to ignore any longer?

The shoe above is being made in toddler and young boy sizes. The last time I checked, toddlers and young boys had zero interest in being mistaken for either a 70′s disco throwback or a retiree angling for that shuffleboard championship.

You may argue, dear manufacturers, that this precious shoe can be worn by the young men in their role as ring bearers and members of a wedding party. But, anyone who dresses said young men in white suits or tuexedoes, which are surely the only thing this shoe matches even remotely, needs to be given a stern lecture which contains such phrases as “this is 2007, for god’s sake” and “even if you live in the antebellum South, white shoes and tuxedoes are still verboten.” I mean, even Britney on her second (or was that the third?) marriage didn’t sink to the level of white tuxedoes. White satin track suits, perhaps, but even she knew enough to resist the white tuxes.

And lastly, I must confess that I take issue with the name of this shoe, “White Fever.” It conjures up images of some sort of worldwide pandemic, with people quarantined in tents and receiving shots. Definitely not something I would want to buy for my child.

Next time, tell your marketing people to just go all out and give it the name it really deserves. The one they were attempting to evoke, but just didn’t have enough guts to go with all the way. Rename the shoe “Saturday White Fever” and at least you get bonus points for being clever.



trick the teenies: gardening chores

How to get your kidlets to do all the weeding you promised your spouse you’d get done while s/he was at work. As tricksy methodologies go, this one has legs; I’m pretty sure this was the only way my ancestors ever got their fields harvested. Well do I remember my mother’s taunts of “your sister’s picked a whole basket more strawberries than you; do you think you can catch her?”

And lookie: here’s a whole list of functional, kid-sized gardening tools, so now there’s no excuse for having a ratty yard. Just equip your teeny team and challenge them to make Ye Olde English Lawne Strypes.

Attack of the Baby Haters!

Now, I know I’m a little out of touch. It’s been some time since the ol’ raincoaster here was in charge of any wee kidlets; why, ever since they shoved me in the oven and got rescued by that nasty woodsman. But still, thinking back to those sepia-toned days of The Electric Company, dancing babies and teeny, wholesome Olsen Twins, she does not recall anything like the bizarre, jokey hostility displayed by New Line Cinema in the marketing for their rather self-explanatory new movie, Shoot ‘Em Up.

That’s New Line Cinema,
116 North Robertson Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA  90048
United States
t (310) 854-5811
f (310) 854-1824

Let’s see, what have we got here:

Bulletproof baby

Cast your gaze upon the delightful shopping site Bulletproof Baby, your go-to internet destination in case you need to equip the love child of Dr Evil and The White Witch. The t-shirt with the bullet-riddled baby bloodstains on it is particularly charmant. Offerings include:

bullet proof baby insurance
covers: stabbings, shootings, incineration, car accidents, drive-bys, kidnappings, snipers, etc

My first riot helmet
riot helmet provides outstanding protection and superior comfort for your baby.

Truly a site for the times, eh? This puts the viral back in marketing: ebola.

But wait, there’s more!

According to Hollywood gossip site Defamer, the movie’s star Clive Owen is unabashedly pro-baby danger:

“[T]he babies were great. I wish we could have put the babies in even more dangerous situations because they centered the action sequences.”

Ladies and gentlemen, that’s a true showbiz pro.  But we’ve saved the best for last…FeltUpbyJen reports that New Line Cinema is also sponsoring “live” celebrations (of a sort), so if you live in the vicinity of the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema in Austin, Texas, do send us a debriefing of their August 30th event (now sadly passed, but surely the management would love to hear your thoughts).

Featuring a spirited game of “Shoot the baby.”

Join us after the screening for the “live human target” afterparty. Successfully shoot the live human target (with paintball rounds) and win fabulous prizes. Everyone at the screening will have a chance to shoot at three live human targets who will be heckling your abilities while trying to avoid your fire. The human targets will also be tossing around a baby. Shoot the baby for a chance at the grand prize! (Note, targets will be live humans, but in the interest of safety, the baby will not be alive).

Details are scarce at press time, but there is as yet no word on whether the baby was domestic or imported, free range or battery, fresh or frozen, and what role, if any, the not-live baby played in the bbq afterparty.

Agents ate my baby!

Airport A Go-Go

McClaren Stroller

I had always marveled at Mariska Hargitay’s cheekbones, and then when I found out her mother was Jayne Mansfield, it all made sense.

And look at her son, so cute with his blankie!

They are sensibly pushing him around in a McClaren Quest Sport stroller. Mariska has excellent taste, because this is exactly the same stroller I bought for my son when we were ready to move him out of his infant system. She joins Gwen Stefani and Sarah Jessica Parker in sharing my stroller preference. I am such the trendsetter, I know!

I can’t say too many good things about this stroller. It is an umbrella stroller with heft, but not added weight. It has an all aluminum frame construction so it won’t fall apart in a year, and which makes it easy to push around without feeling like you are trying to steer a bus. It turns on a dime, and it is very comfortable for the young ones. It folds up very compactly and have I said already that it weighs practically nothing? I have been known to lug it around by the shoulder strap. With no complaint. At Disneyland no less! And I think I only clipped maybe one or two people with it. Because they weren’t paying attention, of course.

Also, my husband loves it because he is 6’2′ and McClaren strollers were the only ones that made the handles high enough for him to be comfortable pushing it instead of having to walk like the Hunchback of Notre Dame. Trust me, he has never been able to use that excuse to not push the stroller.

And speaking of husbands, Mariska’s is sporting some pretty fierce loafers!

The Prince and the Pea

I have always wondered why clothing manufacturers insist on putting huge, sometimes multiple tags on children’s clothes.


They drive my son nuts.  He was known as a toddler to frantically clutch the back of his neck and simultaneously howl his disapproval of the tags.   Like the princess of the fairy tale, he was so sensitive to any sort of uncomfortable fabric that he refused to even lie down until it was gone.  I know, I know, I won the lottery with this one, didn’t I?  I would have to remove the offending garment from his delicate personage, get some scissors, and cut off the tag right then and there.  At first I tried to plead with him to just go to bed and deal, since the primary offenders seem to be pajama manufacturers, but it was futile. By now, it is routine for me to inspect all of his clothes pre-donning and wield the scissors when necessary.


And I think that somewhere out there are people who take great delight in trying to find the scratchiest material known to man, just so they can attach it to the back of pajamas for a three month old.   They must be in cahoots with the scissor industry or something.


I was delighted when I learned that some companies were beginning to ban the tags and instead print the information on the article of clothing itself.  I actually try to look for clothing with the printing, because it just saves me time and I’m lazy like that.                                                              



However, not enough of them are doing it because I still need to regularly hack off those tags.





the Voracious Reader

Etsy is a strange and foreign land, a land populated by hipster/craftster hybrids who, all too often, produce objects which are equal parts amusing and repulsive, and utterly, utterly useless.

Unlike this supercute onesie:

I chew books

And, HELLO! ten bucks!

Via Doppelganger’s 50Books blog, from whence I also stole the title.

This is a great little gift for a spirited and book-loving baby! HANDPAINTED, 100% cotton onesie is comfy and tagless to prevent the itchies. Paints used are non-toxic and stay color-and-image-true, wash after wash.

Onesie comes rolled and tied with coordinating ribbon. Nora Bella hang tags are also included. Gift wrap and name card for baby are FREE — just let me know in the “notes” at checkout.

Although I’m well aware of the practical reasons for having separate tops and bottoms on babies, I must confess to a weakness for onesies; they’re just so damned adorable! And very handy for hanging around the house, as most babies tend to do a fair bit of. The self-mockery of the message is acceptable because presumably everyone who will see it at home knows, and loves, the baby. I’m not fond of self-mocking tees chosen by adults that make fun of the baby wearing them, because this, of course, is the sort of thing that sends the baby to therapy when it’s a bit older, but in this case and those circumstances, it’s all right. I wouldn’t put this on a baby and parade it at the American Book Fair or something.

Bandanna Nation

(Scene: An American living room)

Mom: You know dear, I’m reading about a show with kids that CBS is filming.  They’re looking for participants.  I’m thinking little Jimmy might have some fun. You know, get him out of school and let him stretch his wings a bit. 

Dad: What’s it about?

Mom: Well, it says here that if we sign this little contract, little Jimmy would basically be out in the New Mexico desert, unsupervised, in conditions that could kill him.  And, there may or may not be doctors around that could help him if he gets hurt.

Dad: Hmmm.  I’m not sure I like the sound of that.

Mom: Oh, and if he does die, CBS and the producers are absolved of any and all liability. 

Dad: (scratching his head) Sounds kinda fishy. Can they really do that?

Mom:  Honey, it’s the media, they can do whatever they want.  He will do manual labor in order to keep himself alive, and he may or may not contract a sexually transmitted disease.  Which won’t be CBS’s fault, either.

Dad: I’m leaning towards no.

Mom: But listen, if he gets picked, he will be paid five thousand dollars!  And every episode, he has a chance to win a gold star that will be good for an extra twenty grand! 

Dad: Where do I sign?

Mom: Right here.

Mom: But wait, I’m really not sure about Jimmy wearing one of those bandannas.  It makes him look a little dorky.  I don’t even like the word “bandanna.” It’s just awkward.

Dad: It’s five thousand dollars! Maybe even twenty five thousand!

Mom: You’re right.  What’s a little humiliation?  Give me that pen.

Kid Nation

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