July 29, 2014


One unfortunate trend begets another. Redditor. druishprincess99's pregnant wife, obviously the brains in this operation, didn't want to take glam maternity photos. So Druish, apparently the looks, hired the photographer and posed himself. There are many more photos in the set, which cannot be unseen.

Manternity Pics [imgur.com via neatorama thx @heideland]

July 28, 2014


Failed States is the title of a book by artist Jill Magid, and it is also the title of her 1993 Mercedes 300TE station wagon, which she had armored to B4 level protection, and exhibited last year at the Texas State Capitol:

In training [in Texas to embed with US troops], I learned that in Afghanistan, we would drive around in a 'hard car'-- an armored vehicle, usually a Mercedes, that invisibly blends into traffic. I thought of my used 1993 Mercedes station wagon back in Brooklyn that my husband and I had bought when our son was born, and immediately wanted to armor it.
And who wouldn't? Failed States by Jill Magid [jillmagid.net]


After hearing about a 5-yo who shot his 2yo sister, Amsterdam-based photographer An-Sofie Kesteleyn set off to understand American families where little kids get guns.

After scouring shooting ranges around the country, she found and photographed fifteen kids for her My First Rifle series. She also asked the kids to write down their biggest fear, which, frankly, seems a little heavy-handed.

But after looking through the small selection of Kesteleyn's images of kids posing in their bedrooms with their guns, I can say that my biggest fear is trigger discipline. WT actual F, people.

Oy: Bubblegum and Bullets: Kids With Guns [fotomofo.com]

July 25, 2014

Oh my gosh, how outrageous is this, the exact opposite of the buy-your-kid's-way-into-socialite-preschool story.

Tunette Powell writes in the Washington Post about discovering that her sons were getting suspended from preschool like crazy, for what amounts to age-appropriate behavior, behavior for which other [i.e., white] kids were not getting suspended for.

The problem is not that we have a bunch of racist teachers and administrators. I believe most educators want to help all children. But many aren't aware of the biases and prejudices that they, like all of us, harbor, and our current system offers very little diversity training to preschool staff.

A recent study published by the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that the subjects -- mostly white, female undergraduates -- viewed black boys as older and less innocent than their white peers.

Powell's solution: get more involved at school, and engage with teachers, administrators, and fellow parents to increase understanding and deepen relationships. Which, in the absence of broader awareness and institutional policy shifts, is about all you can do.

My son has been suspended five times. He's 3. [washpost]

Here is a CNN story about the Preschool Admissions Diary, the NYT Motherlode blog series about Judy Batalion's account of applying for preschools in Manhattan. Amazingly, there's not even a link to the Times itself.

The numbers don't lie: expensive, private preschools are expensive and small. Large populations of applicants are trying to get into tiny classes.

People also have no idea what they're supposed to do, and the process is fraught with anxiety, anxiety which is fed by articles about articles like this one. [I guess technically, this is now a blog post about an article about a blog post, so mea culpa.]

There are admissions consultants who prey on this population, and while I'm sure there is much advice that is actually useful, exactly none of it appears in this CNN story. Instead, we have a consultant talk about having ten clients hitting up Bill Clinton for a letter of recommendation, and one asking the Pope. Without knowing how old such anecdotes are, we can't determine how effective such letters might actually be. For example, far from helping, I'd think a letter from Pope Benedict would probably hurt your kid's chances of getting into the 92nd St Y.

The message, I think, is that if all you have to throw at the problem is money, you're doing it wrong. And then if you don't have money to throw at the problem--by which they mean your kid and her entire future, which is now on the line--you're expected to feel even worse.

Anyway, this is not even the season for preschool admissions, so at this point, six months after Batalion's weekly saga began, this is all basicaly angst gossip, preschool admissions snuff porn. You don't need to pay it any mind until the fall.

How New York's 1% get kids into preschool [cnn]
Preschool Admissions Diary by Judy Batalion [nyt]

Jesse Rosenfeld's reports from a maternity ward in Gaza were published yesterday in the Daily Beast. Premature births are up since the bombing began, and incubators and oxygen are not functioning when the power goes out and the generators run out. "These tiny beings--too tiny even to open their eyes--never see the world they were born into."

It's probably just as well at this point, since if they made it home, they'd probably get blown up in their house anyway.

Born in Hell: The Gaza Maternity Ward [thedailybeast.com]

July 24, 2014

Alright, Peanut Butter Cheerios Canada has just made a sequel to the greatest commercial the second largest land mass in North America has ever seen. And it stars a dad who we don't know if he's named Joe or not, but he's Canadian, and that's close enough.

Also as he proves right here, it IS pronounced aboot. So I'm glad we got that cleared up, even if it did take 14 years.

HowToDad.ca [howtodad.ca]


This gorgeous glass & wood preschool by Christoff : Finio is proposed for the corner of Driggs Ave & Fillmore Place, the only landmarked block in Williamsburg.


Fortunately, the scale and design are nice, and the site is a crappy vacant lot right now [GSV, above], so chances for their application with the Landmarks Board are probably good.

They're certainly better than your chances of getting your kid into the Reggio Emilia preschool when it eventually opens in Fall 2016; there are just three classrooms, one per floor, and a rooftop play area. Get those applications ready!

The Architects' Newspaper has more info and many more sexy renderings.

Unveiled> The School at Fillmore Place [archpaper via @HawthorneLAT]

We are back from the competitive, comparative parenting petri dish that is my family's annual gathering on the Outer Banks. And we survived. It is truly fascinating to watch a dozen+ cousins growing up in clumps and waves and to see the similarities and differences emerge. It is also illuminating to see how we and my siblings and their spouses approach parenting.

Such is the stuff sitcom pilots are made of.

July 23, 2014


For the shooting brake enthusiast for whom the custom Aston Martin DB6 wagon is too predictable, there is this: the Allard P-2 Safari Estate.

To say it was in production between 1952 and 1954 is a bit generous, since only 10 were ever made. Unlike the DB6 shooting brake, the 2-door Allard actually had seating for six in a 2-1-3 configuration that featured a rather ridiculously scrunched up jump seat.

Such an odd, motley, amusing, and relatively cheap car, especially for being so rare. So rare and so cheap, in fact, that the one above didn't sell at Classic Car's auction in 2012. For all we know, it may still be punting around Newbury with a FOR SALE sign in the ash-framed window as I type.

Lot Number: 52
1954 Allard P2 'Safari' Estate Car, unsold
P-2 Safari Estate [allardregister.org via the estimable estate espion, DT]
Previously, tenuously related: A Family Vehicle of Obvious Utility

July 22, 2014

You know how the one grandmother in Sixteen Candles opens a box of donuts with a knife and goes, "Voila, breakfast is served!" This is the prequel, only with naptime. The grandparent who winds the exhausted toddler up together stays awake past bedtime together.

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


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


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


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.


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]


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


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:


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?


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


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


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


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


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]


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.



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.


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
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.

  • 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


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]


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


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:


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]



  • 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


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]


June 16, 2014


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


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.


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]
The Worst Mercedes 450 SEL 6.9 Station Wagon, Except For All Those Others

June 14, 2014


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.


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]


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]

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