July 22, 2014

Aimee Bender in the NYTimes:

Most picture books would close with that old lady -- that's the balanced choice. But we see the stars and feel the air -- we've been sure we're staying in but now we're floating out. Why? And then back in for the ending of "Goodnight noises everywhere." This, the last page? At first, I looked for another page -- why end here? Isn't it a little abrupt? But (after a few more readings), isn't it also the way for us to close our eyes metaphorically with the bunny and be in that state right before slipping off to sleep, that magical drifting moment after floating out with the stars and the air, when we only hear noises and next is sleep? The story has moved so close to the bunny as to become an experiential mirror of his drift and fall. How much deeper and more elegant that is than the neat symmetry we might expect.
I am as in awe of the pairing of "Goodnight nothing./ Goodnight mush." as the next guy. But at this point I think we have to add coming to terms with Goodnight Moon to hospital selfies, sleeplessness, and no sex for six weeks to the new parent's rite of passage.

What Writers Can Learn From 'Goodnight Moon' [nyt thanks rolf]

July 21, 2014

image.jpg

OK what, this Buzzfeed article about the anonymous, disembodied hands behind DisneyCollectorBR, a YouTube toy unboxing and play demo channel is utterly bonkers.

Apparently the 55 million views/week translates into between $1 and $13 million per year in ad revenue sharing. I hd no idea that the vast population of parents who let their preschoolers surf YouTube sidebars unattended for two hours at a time was so attractive to advertisers:

Elizabeth Olsen, a Portland, Ore., mother of two, said her 6-year-old daughter, who is learning to read, has taught herself to use the iPad's microphone so that she can use Siri to search Disney Collector videos on her own, a solution to spelling struggles. From there, she said she navigates to more videos through YouTube's sidebars, and though she sometimes ends up watching another channel's videos, she usually finds her way back to Disney Collector. "Unattended she could probably watch for two hours," Olsen said.
SRSLY PPL what the hell is going on here? YouTube's Biggest Star Is An Unknown Toy-Reviewing Toddler Whisperer [buzzfeed thanks dt reader nathan]

That Point In The Family Vacation Where Two Of The Twelve Cousins Open The 3,800-Piece LEGO Death Star On The Coffee Table

July 19, 2014

small_british_child_bbc.jpg

A small British child descended from immigrant stock has survived his first year on government support. [via bbc]

July 18, 2014

In case you were worried about the fate of ActionMovieKid and his dad as their 2015 Toyota Sienna #SwaggerWagon gets caught in the space station's powerful tractor beam, let the "Fictitious scene with stationary vehicle" disclaimer put your mind at ease.

Meanwhile, back in the non-fiction world, Action Movie Kid Dad Daniel Hashimoto signed with UTA last month, both to direct film projects, and to blow out "the Action Movie Kid IP into books, products, and feature spinoffs."

DT's favorite minivan and viral IP licensing sleuth David Traver Adolphus reports that a web marketing consulting firm registered ActionMovieKid.com in April, a couple of weeks after Hashimoto's CGI-filled YouTube channel broke out. I am confident that this signals an authentic, reasoned response by a parent who's well-versed in the film, TV, and entertainment industry. If the whole thing were really a long viral con, they would've locked up the domain name first. Enjoy the ride, Kid™!

Tractorbeam! | Toyota Sienna 2015 [youtube
UTA Signs 'Action Movie Kid' Viral Video Creator Daniel Hashimoto [deadline.com
After Effects Animators' Kids Have The NICEST YouTube Videos

July 17, 2014

kuow_lactation_room_.jpg

I've had these lactation room stories sitting here in my tabs for weeks now, hoping they'll all get better. But I don't think they do!

Abe Sauer wrote about the difficulties facing working moms in Minnesota, where companies like Wal-Mart and McDonald's are variously dealing with or ignoring new workplace regulations that give women the right to a private, electricity-equipped space to use a breast pump. You have to click through, if only to see the amazing lactation tents at the Pine County Fair.

And just a couple of days before, KUOW listeners around Seattle had assembled a huge slideshow of their lactation spaces, ranging from the postively spa-like to, well, KUOW's own lactation room, above. The flowers really, really are not helping.

kuow_seattle_lactation_room.jpg

The Death Star-lookin' yoga ball, on the other hand, is totally killing it. More like this please!

Breastpumping moms gain new rights -- but does Minnesota's new 'Women's Security' law have enough teeth? [minnpost]
Lactation Rooms Around Seattle and Beyond [kuow.org]

July 15, 2014

Molly Caro May has a great essay about her and her BF/husband Chris Kautz's decision to give their first kid her last name, and his as a middle name. It's a thoughtful look at how equity and patriarchy and awareness and sensitivity play out in some of our most underexamined assumptions and traditions.

Kudos to May and Kautz for their inspiring decision.

What Happened When We Gave Our Daughter My Last Name [thehairpin]

zingy_chili_lime_goldfish.jpg

We replaced this unsuspecting toddler's usual, vaguely cheddar cheesy Pepperidge Farm GOLDFISH® with new, LIMITED EDITION! FLAVOR BLASTED ZINGY CHILI LIME GOLDFISH®, and recorded his reaction on hidden camera:

Actually, we didn't but if YOU did, it could be your hilarious ticket to viral fame, right up there with the guy who, rather than take it away, video'd his kid drinking a bottle of hot sauce. Send a link.

July 14, 2014

zombie_seasons_treehouse.jpg

On the one hand, this Seasons Natural Toys treehouse is a survivor, the first I've ever seen from the eco-friendly, indie toy company started by Jennifer stickley and Lynn DeRose in the early 1990s. And gone now--the last online mentions of the company make me think it was wiped out in the last recession. [UPDATE: DT treehouse correspondent DT points out that Seasons went out of business in 2005.]

On the other hand, this particular example is basically a grab bag of beat-to-hell, mis-matched Creative Playthings dollhouse furniture scattered around a treehouse that's missing its own furniture, it's Waldorfy doll family, and its entire jig-saw cutout roof:

og_seasons_natural_treehouse.jpg

So historic artifact of little-known 90s kids design ripe for restoration, or hilariously ambitious opening bid for a random assortment of dollhouse stuff that filled a dollar bin at someone's garage sale? I say, why choose?

DOLLHOUSE TREEHOUSE SEASONS NATURAL CREATIVE PLAYTHINGS MID CENTURY MODERN WOOD, first bid $125+20 s/h, auction ends July 20 [ebay]

July 11, 2014

Hey girl, Judith Butler encourages us to use camp to expose gender so I am wearing a pink ducky onesie today.

...

Hey girl, I think I'm going vegan as soon as I stop breastfeeding.

...

Hey girl, I'm really glad my mom was able to decide whether and when to have me because she had access to reproductive health services, but I know that speaks to the privilege into which I was born 17 days ago.

Speaking of Oedipus, I read through the whole Feminist Ryan Gosling's Baby--which, who has time to make a tumblr anymore?--thinking it was the sensitive feminist baby talking to his mother, not another baby. So that's complicated.

This is our generation's Free To Be...You & Me, people. Let's make this happen.

Feminist Ryan Gosling's Baby [feministing via dt reader kyle]
Previously: Free to blow my freakin' mind

This neo-classical sculpture of an infant Oedipus being rescued by the shepherd Phorbas is based on an 1801 plaster model by Antoine-Denis Chaudet. It was realized in marble some time after the artist's death in 1810, and is currently in the collection of the Louvre in Paris.

It caught my eye because it looked like Phorbas has some sort of amazing, over-the-shoulder surrogate breastfeeding apparatus going on there. I figured it's still worth posting, even though it just turned out to be a bowl.

Antoine-Denis Chaudet, après 1810, Oedipe enfant rappelé à la vie par le berger Phorbas qui l'a détaché de l'arbre [louvre.fr]

http://twitter.com/ftrain">@ftrain called this a pro-circumcision music video, but I'd probably call it anti-intactivist, and pro-mohel, with some factoids about the benefits of circumcision for sexually active men penciled in.

It says a lot that the strongest argument for infant circumcision remains, as it has for centuries, religion.

And all that said, Kol Ish's Royals cover is pretty sharp, funny, and well-done. I might speed up the tempo 10-15%, but I wouldn't cut a thing.

Mohels by Kol Ish (The Bris Anthem) [youtube via @ftrain]

July 9, 2014

Not to be all Billy Bummer about everything, but I've had this Times article, "The Trauma of Parenthood," open in my browser tabs for a couple of weeks now. So it's expected. Psychology and management professor Eli J. Finkel writes about the physical and mental hardships of parenting, post-partum depression, and the crush of societal and personal expectations that pile on parents' shoulders, with debilitating effects. The unexpectedly personal ending catches me up every time I see it:

As a recent parent myself, I urge you to consider this the next time someone you know greets the transition to parenthood with hopelessness or even despair. Pursue kindness over ideology. For a person whose suffering has been met with judgment, a sympathetic ear can make all the difference.
And I swear, I've meant to post it here, there's just been so much going on and--anyway.

This morning I found Ethan Zuckerman's incredibly thoughtful account of recognizing and dealing with his own high-function depression, and how it differed from the difficulties his wife faced after a miscarriage and, later, the birth of their son. It's powerful stuff, and if you recognize yourself or someone you know, it's really important reading.

The Trauma of Parenthood [nyt]
Life, only moderately messed up: understanding (my own) high-functioning depression [ethanzuckerman via @agpubic]

July 7, 2014

babyfeud_gigglebelly.png

Speaking of grownups wearing infantile t-shirts...

Poet, writer and Nerve.com alum Johannah K-S has just launched Baby Feud Zazzle, a tumblr collection of Onesie designs custom printed on adult-sized shirts. It only started this morning, and it's already making everyone look ridiculous. I expect big little things from this one.

Baby Feud [babyfeud.tumblr.com via @jjjjjjjjohanah]

July 6, 2014

mr_jihad_mr_men.jpg

There's a new Mr Men in town, and Hello Kitty is not smiling.

The Daily Mail reports [sic, obv] that Mr Men & Little Miss owner Sanrio is bent out of shape about Mr Jihad. [Wait, who owner what? Sanrio bought Mr Men in 2011 from the dissolution of Chorion just two years after the private equity rollup/MBO? How did I not--never mind. We'll talk about this later.]

Point is, Sanrio's sending cease&desist letters to various retailers to stop Mr. Jihad, but intellectual property terrorists are just like the real thing: they can melt into the online crowd, and efforts to combat them head-on only result in more intellectual property terrorism. Despite Sanrio's efforts, there are over 3,000 items of Mr Men-style t-shirts of varying levels of hilarity and NSFW-ness. And many of them are for iron-on transfer prints, which can turn up without warning on any t-shirt or Onesie.

Maybe it'd be better to find out what caused Mr. Bump to turn to nihilistic violence in the first place. Was it some form of illness-related disorder? Traumatic brain injury? Desperation at the gutting of the National Health Service?

'Mr Jihad' T-shirts showing famous characters in suicide vests land British firms in trouble with brand's owner [dailymail.co.uk via dt reader sean]

Huh, the Mail just rewrote this story from The Sun, which is apparently opposed to t-shirts or tops of any kind. [thesun.co.uk]

Search for parody Mr Men and Little Miss stuff on eBay [ebay]
Or go straight to the Mr Jihad section and show the capitalist west what you're made of [ebay]

July 3, 2014

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I don't know what glorious pronouncement of Soviet parenting advice No. 3A is, but I'm sure Putin's parents followed it to a T.

English Russia has a whole collection of kids' propaganda posters for your future kleptocrat's collective nursery walls.

Every Kid Should Know This [englishrussia via dt comrade rolf]

The tagline for the NY Review of Books' blog is, "Roving thoughts and provocations." And Christopher Benfy's post about poetry and bending vs. breaking is certainly that:

Some commentators think that "Rock-a-bye Baby," first published in Mother Goose's Melody (1781), is American in origin, alluding to the alleged Native American practice of hanging birch-bark cradles in the trees so that the wind rocks them. The rhyme would seem to cast doubt on the safety of the practice, thus besmirching hardworking Indian mothers, who presumably had other things to do than rocking a cradle day and night.

And why exactly was the cradle hung in the tree-top? Were the lower branches already taken?

Others believe that "Rock-a-bye Baby" is a political allegory of the Glorious Revolution. Alarmed when the Catholic James II produced an heir to secure the Stuart succession, Protestants dreamed of infanticide. "In the nursery rhyme," Michael Vestey wrote in The Spectator, "the baby on the tree-top is the heir, when the wind blows it is the Protestant wind that will blow the fleet of William over to Britain, and when the bough breaks... down too will come the Stuart monarchy." (Dismissing such "fanciful and ingenious" explanations, Marina Warner suggests that the tree in the song is the family tree, and that the broken bough refers to "the death of parents and its effect on children.")

With lullabies like these, it's amazing that babies survive.

Bend or Break

July 2, 2014

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As everybody good stroller publicist knows, when it comes to paparazzi photos, the most important thing is logo placement. [via my back-in-the-day posse member, former Vogue editor, and power stylist who probably really, really wishes someone would help this unfortunate tourist from Calabassas, Ann's Twitter]

big_bird_passed_out_mlamster.jpg

He's no Central Park Zoo Elmo, but it looks like Big Bird could use an intervention.

We interrupt this not freaking out about news stories phase to bring you this important announcement: Some insane 27yo dad got arrested doing 150mph in a Mercedes 320--a 320!--in England last September, trying to make a 5-hour drive from Hull to Dover to catch the last ferry to the continent:

Cambridgeshire Police said that when officers got to the car, they found a woman in the passenger seat, while in the back were six-month old twins in car seats facing forwards and not secured with seatbelts, a one-year-old girl asleep on the seat between the twins, and a two-year-old boy in the footwell.
Is that off the charts crazy?? Being 27 with four kids in three years? Oh right, by doing 150mph in a Mercedes 320!

Reckless driver caught doing 150mph with four kids in the car - NONE wearing seatbelts [mirror.co.uk via dt racing correspondent dt]

June 30, 2014

So we took the kids to the movies the other night, a non-trivial event for them, because srsly, what would they ever go see: 1) some too-loud, dumb, animated fart-fest full of Gen Y culture references they know nothing about or 2) Frozen?

Anyway, this commercial came on, and by about 20 seconds in, I was getting really pissed about having my emotions manipulated so baldly and relentlessly for--for what, who knows? Cell phones? Lunchables? Life insurance? There really is no way of knowing, and it was only becoming more and more obvious that it didn't matter: cue the swelling violins, this was pure, uncut propaganda, and we were its captive targets.

At 0:54 the text came up, "Isn't it time we celebrate Dads?" and someone in the theater actually called out, "Yes!" Meanwhile, I'm fuming behind my tears, going, "It's like you don't even read my blog!"

And then it turns out I'm wrong, because it's an ad for Dove Mens Care.

Now anyone who's been around the dadblog world at all the last couple of years knows Dove Mens Care has been a prominent and consistent sponsor of many blogs, including many dads I have long admired and respected. Dove has also sponsored the Dad 2.0 Summit, which is a totally legit example of a genre that I otherwise wish did not exist: the blogger-brandmarketer convention. Dove's people have been repeatedly generous in their offers and respectful in their interactions with me, even though I have consistently declined to include Daddy Types in their marketing campaigns. So much love Dove.

But that's not the point. The point is, I don't like having my emotions played for obviously corporate purposes that I know nothing about--especially because they are withheld from me until literally the last second because, I assume, SOFTEN THEM UP FOR BIG REVEAL.

THIS IS NOT WORKING FOR ME, DOVE MEN+CARE. IT MAKES ME SUSPICIOUS OF YOUR PRODUCT, WHICH TURNS OUT TO BE SOAP AND STUFF. MY FREE ADVICE TO YOU IS COME CLEAN OR DIAL IT BACK.

philippe_starck_mustache_target.JPG

Philippe Starck's The Face haunts Daddy Types like a kids' design version of recovered memory trauma.

The Face was introduced in 1997, and was briefly sold in FAO Schwarz, not, as the current seller on eBay UK claims, as part of Starck's 1999-2000 kids' capsule collection for Target.

philippe_starck_mustache_target2.JPG

If you must have one in your collection, reading this post or clicking through to the auction page constitutes your agreement to hold me, Daddy Types, and all its contributors, commenters, and readers not liable for any longterm psychological, developmental, or college admissions-related damages your kid may, uh, face.

Philippe Starck. Democratic Design. Mustache ride-on toy. Designed for Target [sic], auction ends July 9, opening bid
GBP 75+30 shipping
[ebay]
Previously, 2011: Philippe Starck's The Face Mustache Ride-on Toy

June 28, 2014

The Daddy Types Friday Freakout is apparently on summer hours:


  • With nutritional standards based on adults from 1968, fortified cereals are not part of kids' balanced breakfast, says a study. [usatoday]

  • The Amish were refusing vaccines before refusing vaccines was cool, and now they've got a raging measles outbreak. And are rushing to get vaccinated. [npr]

  • The US is basically the Mississippi of paid parental leave policy, at the bottom of the world list, announced the White House at a Working Families Summit this week, which sounds like a great policy agenda for the next few weeks. [whitehouse.gov]

  • Also President Obama broke out of the Summit for a burrito bowl, and totally reached over the sneezeguard at one of our four neighborhood Chipotles, which is just weird, stay on the other side of the sneezeguard.


obama_chipotle_eater_scr.png
  • Which, if you wait until Friday to do freakout roundups, you see that every two-bit TV talking head freaks out over the exact same thing, and really, how much of the news is just corporations trying to manipulate our emotional reactions to keep us outraged and glued to the screen, watching disability scooter ads? [eater]

  • Facebook secretly manipulated the feeds of 600,000 users in an attempt to induce and study "emotional contagion." [avclub; methodological takedown by psychcentral]

  • Sarah Boxer has a good, long read about why are all the mothers in all the animated films dead, and is this some kind of good-father-as-savior nipple envy fantasy? But she doesn't really find the solution, and so we're left with Elastigirl to save us all. [theatlantic]

June 25, 2014

playmobil_summer_fun_housekeeping.jpg

Esta muñeca de limpieza de Playmobil viene con todo lo que necesita para limpiar las habitaciones de hotel en todo el día, salvo un salario digno, la reforma migratoria, y la representación sindical!

Y gracias al descuento de Amazon, esta muñeca ahora cuesta menos que el salario medio por hora para el personal de limpieza del hotel.

Comprar ahora!

5271 PLAYMOBIL Summer Fun Housekeeping Service, retails for $11.99, but is like $7.98 at Amazon [amazon]

henry_glass_kids_table_w20.jpg

You may remember Henry Glass's Swingline children's furniture collection from such posts as holy smokes, 2006, has it been that long? This stuff just does not turn up much, does it?

In the early 1950s, industrial designer Glass created a series of kids furniture around the themes: bright colors, Masonite, and stuck-on-poles. And this table and four stools fits the bill perfectly.

It has emerged out of some midwestern rumpus room and into the bright lights of Wright20's July 12th online design auction, with a couple of rough edges and an even rougher estimate. Good luck, kids!

Lot 163, Henry Glass, Swingline child's table & stools, est. $2-3,000 [wright20]
Previously:Mid-Century Swingline Group Kids Furniture by Henry Glass

June 23, 2014

Eddie Vedder added the chorus of "Let It Go" to a concert performance of "Just Breathe" and "Daughter" in Milan last Friday. It starts around 8:20 into this clip.

I'm as surprised as anyone that I actually wanted to hear more than 30 seconds of this song. [via dlisted thanks dt reader brent]

June 20, 2014

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Ikeahackers has been through a lot of crap recently, thanks to Ikea's overzealous, underthinking lawyers, who threatened the pioneering customer community site with trademark violation lawsuits unless they changed their name to WHATEVERWEDONTCAREASLONGASITSNOTIKEAhackers or something. Someone in the company got a clue, fortunately, and the lawyers backed off, so all is well. I think. But the crisis gave people a chance to rally, and to fave some projects.

Like this cute little kid's raincoat, which Sarina in Australia made from an Ikea bag.

Now i just noticed Sarina's hand in the bottom of this picture, and wow, this coat is really small. Also, apparently the hood doesn't quite go all the way around. And there's a V-neck, which is sort of a dealbreaker in the raincoat industry. But you get the idea, you have some details, and now you can move the concept forward yourself.

In fact, a few years ago, I did make a raincoat out of Ikea bags. Technically, I had it made, by a master seamstress wizard friend of my mom's. It went to a show in Milan which Andy from Reference Library and Stork Bites Man curated one year. Mine turned out to be too big, but it was a good start. Gotta find that thing.

Kid's raincoat from an Ikea bag [ikeahackers.net via gizmodo, thanks dt reader rolf]

Sometimes as a parentblogger, you just have to stop and acknowledge pure WTF genius. And even when a loyal reader and contributor to the DT discourse says it's "the baby name post you should have written," you have to be strong enough and honest enough to face the reality that I don't have enough Y's, KH's, accents or apostrophes in my life right now to be able to write even half of STFUParents' epic roundup of baby naming mayhem.

It is all just beyond, and srsly I can't even:

azeriyah_rose_stfuparents.jpg

Now I'm going to point out that this example is technically from 2009, but STFUP's people were legitimately looking up the pronunciation of Zhyrhyla when they found it so, all good [sic]. I am going to disagree with STFUP&Co, though, and say that Green Parent is not actually flipping the bird to the English language here, but is executing a very subtle critique, wrapped in giddy enthusiasm. Green assumes that it's impossible to neg Purple out of her naming strategy, but it might be possible to plant a seed of doubt, or self-awareness. To get Purple to ask herself, "Wait, am I a 'wierdo'?" for perhaps the very first time.

And from that seed of prenatal consciousness, a small sapling of empathy might grow. And rather than naming your kid after your last three wifi passwords combined, and then getting all aggro when no one can pronounce or spell it, ever, you give the kid a more reasonable name.

OTOH, Demo is kind of cool. So, for that matter, is Otoh.

Just throwing that out there.

Yoonique Names: Mid-Year Baby Names Dump Edition [stfuparentsblog.com via jj daddy-o]

This DT Friday Freakout is dedicated to summer, and to MAKING IT A HABIT TO LOOK IN THE BACK SEAT OF YOUR CAR EVERY SINGLE TIME YOU GET IN OR OUT, NOT JUST WHEN THE KID IS WITH YOU, BUT EVERY SINGLE TIME, AS MUCH A PART OF YOUR ROUTINE AS LOCKING YOUR DOOR, AS UNBUCKLING YOUR BELT, AS PUTTING UP YOUR VISOR, AS GRABBING YOUR BIG GULP, WHATEVER IT IS THAT YOU ALREADY DO AUTOMATICALLY,

WHEN YOU HAVE A KID YOU SHOULD ALWAYS CHECK THE CAR WHEN YOU GET OUT, TO SEE IF THE KID IS IN THERE:


  • A dad in Cocoa, Florida forgot to drop his 9-month-old daughter at her grandparents when he went to work. She spent over four hours in her dad's truck, and she died of heatstroke Monday. He was charged with manslaughter today. [usatoday]

  • A dad in Atlanta forgot to drop his 22-month-old son at day care when he went to work. He spent over seven hours in his dad's SUV in a Home Depot parking lot and died on Wednesday. The dad was charged with murder. [ajc]

  • At least ten other kids have died so far this year in the US after being left in cars, according to KidsAndCars.org, who is so busy counting these tragic deaths, they haven't updated their website's news section for two years.


June 19, 2014

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Prague-born artist Kristof Kintera's 2007 work, Bad Innovation In The Name Of Protection, is included in his exhibition I AM NOT YOU, which just opened at the Museum Tinguely in Basel, Switzerland. It is basically an armored stroller, made of camo-painted bulletproof glass, powdercoated steel, and [actual] stroller wheels.

Also in the show, a full array of his more widely known Talkmen, preschooler-sized animatronic figures which Kintera has deployed to babble and yell about things, walk around, and, as seen here in Revolution (2005), to bash their heads against a wall. Revolution is on YouTube.

Kristof Kintera | I AM NOT YOU | through 28 Sept 2014 [tinguely.museum]
Kristof Kintera portfolio site [kristofkintera.com]

June 18, 2014

Last time I checked in on long-ago Gawker writer Joshua David Stein, he was regaling all and sundry at Gilt.com with his august account of a less-well-bred journalist crashing a Bentley during a winter junket to Connecticut. That was back in 2011.

Now, in 2014, Stein has two kids, a doublewide stroller, and a highly cultivated hatred of Caillou, and he's writing about his daddish hashtags on the J. Crew tumblr.

One of his kids is even named Augustus, perhaps a reminder of his dad's former gallivanting style.

The thing is, a few years ago, well before I was a father myself, I thought, "What kind of schmucks flood social media with photos of their progeny?" But now, not only do I post photos on Instagram and Facebook, but Achilles has his own hashtag (#achilles4president) and Augustus does too (#auggiebehr).

On Test-Driving (and Witnessing the Unfortunate Wreckage of) The 2011 Bentley Series | Gilt MANual [gilt.com]
#Fatherhood [jcrew.tumblr.com]

subway_chi_ter_twitter.png

June 16, 2014

volvo_v60_wagon_scr.jpg

Here's the deal, car makers: No matter how many SUVs and crossovers and Google robot cars come down the road, as long as there's one writer who remembers riding in back as a kid, we're never gonna stop trying to make station wagons happen.

Today it's Jesse Will, in the Wall Street Journal, with a sloppy kiss to a fleet of wagon models, including the new Volvo V60 T5 and the Mercedes E-Class, "the only model with a rear-facing jump seat."

Huh, sounds like the Journal's guy was on the same Station Wagon Association of America junket as the NY Times' Lawrence Ulrich, who rounded up almost the exact same wagon suspects in his Volvo review a couple of weeks ago.

Station Wagons That Are Licensed to Thrill [wsj via dt reader rolf]
A Swede That's Not Square to Be Hip [nyt]
The 2015 Volvo V60 Sportswagon [volvocars.com]

June 15, 2014

1973_450se_wagon_front_qtr.jpg

Well now this is interesting. More than interesting, even. It's a 1973 Mercedes 450SE with a wagon conversion, and it's not horrible. In fact, it looks pretty amazing.

The seller in Atlanta said the conversion was possibly done by Conrad Pollmann in Bremen, the same volk who converted the MB 450SEL 6.9 wagon with the inexplicable roof hump seen here on DT in 2008. Which, if so, IT GETS BETTER. And if you compare it to the big Mercedes wagons Crayford hacked together from Ford Granada parts in the UK around the same time, IT GETS WAY BETTER.

1973_450se_wagon_rearqtr.jpg

Not counting the seller, there were apparently just two previous owners, one of whom had the car largely parked since 1989. The 41yo car looks good, and only has 91,000 miles, but needs a real going over. As the best-looking W116 wagon conversion I've seen, it might just be worth it.

Mercedes Benz 450 SE 1973 Station Wagon Estate Car Conversion, current bid $6,800, auction ends Jun 19 [ebay via bringatrailer]
Previously:
The Worst Mercedes 450 SEL 6.9 Station Wagon, Except For All Those Others

June 14, 2014

daulaire_norse_myths_nyrb.jpg

The New York Review of Books publishing imprint has been steadily bringing lost classics back into print, including dozens of books for kids of all ages. Now they're having a summer sale, and all children's book titles are 30% off through June 30, 2014.

Which means you can get them almost as cheaply as you would at Amazon, without having to sweat the agonies of shopping at Amazon while it's flexing its monopolistic might, and you'll put more money directly into the coffers of the small, independent publisher doing such excellent work. The only loser I see is Daddy Types, which gets satisfaction, but no kickbacks from your clickthrough orders. Oh well, I suppose it's worth it.

DT's top recommendation has to be the hardcover reissue of D'Aulaires' Book of Norse Myths, which is one of our family's perennial favorites. We got a vintage copy from one of my wife's best, most literary friends when the kid was born, and both girls love it.

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I'm also interested in the 2012 reissue of Betty Jean Lifton & photographer Eikoh Hosoe's 1967 book, Taka-chan and I: A Dog's Journey To Japan by Runcible. The story is told from the Liftons' Weimeraner's perspective, and I'm sure it's adorable, whimsical, and thoughtful. Let me know.

The New York Review of Books Children's Book Collection Summer Sale runs through June 30 [nybooks]
D'Aulaires' Book of Norse Myths , now $17.47
Taka-chan and I: A Dog's Journey to Japan by Runcible , now $11.87

June 13, 2014

There's only one headline that freaks me out this week, and it includes the words, "Whooping Cough Epidemic."

California has declared a pertussis epidemic, with 3,458 cases reported since the beginning of the 2014, more than in all of 2013.

It's also way more than the number of autism cases which have been prevented by large clusters of parents refusing to have their kids vaccinated: WHICH IS ZERO.

The CDC is reporting a 24% increase in pertussis cases nationally. Get your immunization and boosters, people and little people.

California declares whooping cough epidemic [cnn]

Hermes-PetitH-Squirrel_Bookcase.jpg

Here is an orange calfskin bookcase in the shape of a geometric squirrel fron Petit h, Hermès's upcycling collection of oddball one-off objects overseen by the great-great-great-granddaughter of the company, Pascale Mussard.

I guess it's better than starting an heiress rock band, or being a socialite-DJ in St. Tropez or wherever, but not by much. Honestly, people.

Petit h [hermes.com via coolhunting, who does not say if the bookcase will be available this weekend at the Costa Mesa Hermès store's Petit h exhibition]

Longtime dadblogger Oren Miller of Bloggerfather was recently diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. A group of his friends, fans, and readers have already raised nearly $10,000 to help with medical and family expenses. You can join your support and best thoughts for Oren and his family now.

Give Back To Oren [giveforward via @laidoffdad]
Cancer [bloggerfather]

June 9, 2014

Writer Gabe Roth got busted by park cops for letting his 3yo daughter pee behind a bush in a Brooklyn waterfront park, and The Awl is ON it.

Actually what most people seem to be on is the cop's side, because Gabe is apparently a loathsome, over-entitled helicopter parent deserving of some serious stop&frisk beatdowning.

Join the civil civics fray here:

How Not ToLet Your Small Child Pee In A Public Park [theawl.com]

June 7, 2014

It's a gorgeous, clear sunny day here. And as we go about our busy weekend, I'm constantly pulled back to thinking about Eric Meyer and his family, who are with their daughter Rebecca on what will likely be her last day. It is also her sixth birthday. I hope they find all the comfort and solace they need.


Previously: 'If her flight is to be short, let it be far'

June 6, 2014

News piles up during the week, news from the worlds of parenting, science, health, politics, education, &c., that's designed to get your attention by freaking you out. Here at Daddy Types, we like to help parents sail through the week carefree, by bundling those stories into one, giant, weekend-ruining post: the DT Friday Freakout:


  • One way to bake the freakout into parenting is to call something a disease. Something normal like spitting up. A UMich study found that calling spitting up Gastro-Intestinal Reflux Disorder caused significantly more parents to want drug prescriptions, any drug prescriptions, even ineffective drug prescriptions, just HELP MY BABY. [aap via NYT]

  • The "maternal instinct" is really the "parental instinct," this study from Israel of dads' hormones found. [sciencemag.org]

  • Fathers matter, finds this guy's book about a bunch of studies, Do Father's Matter? [uh, SPOILER ALERT?

  • nyt]

  • If anyone was wondering lately about the amount of force needed to crush a human skulll--hey, it could happen!--a U of IL bike helmet study found that crushing a kid's skull would take 235kg, or 2,300 newtons of force. [the journal neuroscience: pediatrics; via sciencealert.com.au explainer on the science of crushing skulls with your bare hands]

  • Of these 8 "science-based" books about pregnancy "for science-savvy ladies," From The Hips sounds the most interesting. I'm sure they're all as good as Maggie says. [boingboing, which wraps its amazon affiliate links in goo.gl shorteners for some reason. DT doesn't. Go ahead and throw us a bone if you want to.]

  • Here's a great look at the depressing state of lactation rooms and the rights of working moms in Minnesota. More to come on this in a separate post, I think. [minnpost]

  • More men are staying home to take care of kids because, a survey finds. [nyt]

June 5, 2014

lego_cable_genius_techmog.jpg

All you need is a little Kragle.

img alt="float_baby_vox_wtf.png" src="http://daddytypes.com/assets_c/2014/06/float_baby_vox_wtf-thumb-525x349-14138.png" width="525" height="349" class="mt-image-center" style="text-align: center; display: block; margin: 0 auto 20px;" />

Vox's Matt Yglesias seems to think that Houston's kidcentric day spa Float Baby is a sign that our rich have too much disposable income to spend on increasingly pointless, even ridiculous things. He uses the Law of Diminishing Returns to support a call for higher taxes.

I'm sure a hypercapitalist who disagrees would say that Float Baby just underscores the importance of innovation in all aspects of our consumptive lives: we just need better things on which our rich can spend their money, is all.

Me, I am left to wonder how we could collapse so quickly as a species that within less than a decade we go from plopping babies serenely in buckets to dangling them from their heads like fishing lures.

Float Baby -- Houston's new infant day spa makes the case for higher taxes [vox]
Previously: The Tummy Tub: it's Dutch for 'baby bucket'

June 4, 2014

stlouis_airport_checkpoint_playground.jpg

Honestly, if your kid can go through the play X-ray machine, I think I'm totally fine with this. Just watch the patdowns. [via twitter, obv]
Previously, related: Playmobil Security Checkpoint

Wasn't giving ribbons to everyone in peewee league supposed to cure this generation of its insecurities? Can we come up with a next plan before gun nuts nuts with guns randomly kill someone at Chipotle or wherever?

June 3, 2014

538_deadest_names.png

By throwing the Social Security Agency's actuarial tables against their name registration data, 538 has come up with some interesting analysis of the age distribution for names in the US.

This table of the "Deadest Names" is probably the most clickbaity--and whaddyaknow I clicked on it. It basically charts old-fashioned names that have not had their trendy revivals yet.

538_bimodal_violet.png

Contrast that to names with high bimodal distributions, like Violet, where the median age, 47, tells you almost nothing about the historical popularity, or the new hotness. I'm a little disappointed that 538 didn't mentnion The Incredibles (2004), but I guess that's for another post.

How to Tell Someone's Age When All You Know Is Her Name [fivethirtyeight.com via twitter somewhere]

mr_men_box_set.jpg

Now that the only books he reads anymore are kids' books, he Guardian's Charlie Brooker has an awesomely cranky paean to Roger Hargreave's capitalistic masterpiece, the Mister Men & Little Miss series, which he [Englishly] grew up on, and which he fears might be the only physical books his 2yo son will ever know:

Out of selfish nostalgia I bought a complete box set of Mr Men stories, which turned out to be the most satisfying purchase I've made in about a decade. The stories themselves aren't especially remarkable. They follow a fairly rigid template. In each story Mr Titular wakes up, has breakfast (usually eggs, consumed in a manner that vividly illustrates his character), goes for a walk, encounters a worm or a wizard or a shopkeeper, learns a harsh moral lesson and then crawls home, a changed man, hopelessly broken by experience.

The Mr Men inhabit a godless universe. They chiefly fall into two camps - those with character defects (eg Mr Greedy) and those with afflictions (eg Mr Skinny). They all suffer in some way, except those too mad (Mr Silly) or too stupid (Mr Dizzy) to comprehend what suffering is.

Holy smokes, the Mr. Men: My Complete Collection 47-volume box set is not a joke, it's a real thing. Which was apparently published a year earlier in a 50-volume "Complete Collection"?

little_miss_box_set.jpg

And there's a 34-volume Little Miss My Complete Collectionbox set to go along with it. Which is not the 36-volume Little Miss "Complete Collection".

Yeah, hm. Beyond the pure private equity merchandising flood aspect of it all, I imagine there's some father/son, Roger/Adam Hargreaves, original/spinoff confusion going on in there, just like with de Brunhoff & fils and The Endlessly Licensable Brand Extending Adventures of Babar, but without the nuance. Unless you're Mr. Compleatist or Little Miss Compulsive Shopper, maybe just go with the Mr. Men 40th Anniversary Box Set, which has ten books, but only costs like $15, for hardcover.

The Mr Men inhabit a godless universe. It's a brutal existence [guardian]
Previously, the history of: Mr. Private Equity & Little Miss Licensing [

June 2, 2014

The smackdown of Caillou turns out to be only the 25th awesomest thing about John Oliver's report on how badly the cable/internet providers are going to screw us all if their gutting of net neutrality rules goes forward.

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO): Net Neutrality [youtube]
Leave your public comment to stop the tiering destruction of the internet at the FCC's site [fcc.gov]

shona_carter-brooks_baby_wedding_cbc.jpg

To that nice Christian lady and her baby daddy in Memphis, who strapped their 1-month-old kid onto the train of her wedding dress when she walked down the aisle, who then posted the pic on Facebook, and faced down the critics' wrath with a hearty, "Our 1 month old was awake and well secured on my train. Most important while y'all got ya feelings in us we had our hearts in Christ which covers all!!", I say mazeltov.

Bride criticized for dragging baby down the aisle on her wedding dress [cbc.ca]

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