& a review: hats and thieves

You might remember from a while back that I had a new favorite children’s book. Changed my outlook on literature as I know it. If you haven’t read about it, go ahead and we’ll be here when you get back.

I also mentioned previously here that we started a Christmas tradition of giving Squatch (and any future kids we might have) a book on Christmas Eve. Here’s what we got him:

NotMyHat

Awwwwwwww, yeeeeeeeeeeah! It’s a sequel, Motherbitches! Okay, so maybe not a sequel, but definitely a related book. It has to do with hats and stealing, like the first one, but none of the original characters show up. There are several similarities, however.

With This is Not My Hat, we’re once again introduced to the idea of the stolen hat, only this time we’re following the thief instead of the victim. The perpetrator in this book is a little fish wearing a dapper bowler hat, which—if we’re paying attention—we’ve already gleaned is not his hat.

Suspect No. 1

Suspect No. 1

This tiny hat, as he is so quick to point out, fits him perfectly. This is why he stole it in the first place. This hat originally belonged to a much bigger fish on whom the hat looks small and silly. I find this to be absolutely believable, as I have known several people (not to be sexist, but most have been girls) who may or may not* liberate clothes from people when it looked better on them and silly on the person it belonged to. As such, this fish thief is a completely realistic character.

*But definitely did

The fish thief, however, is also a very stupid character, as I would not think it wise to take things when the victim looks like this:

This apparently is not the book where Squatch will learn that snitches get stitches and wind up in ditches like little bitches.

This apparently is not the book where Squatch will learn that snitches get stitches and wind up in ditches like little bitches.

Not to ruin the ending, but the thief gets eaten. Again. Which is awesome. I like that Squatch will learn that there are dire consequences to taking stuff that doesn’t belong to you. But it makes me wonder a few things about Jon Klassen.

I love these books. They’re probably my favorite of the ones that Squatch owns. But they make me sort of wonder a little bit about Klassen. Did he have issues with his hat being stolen a lot growing up? Are these some sort of revenge fantasy being played out in children’s books? Or does he just really just not like thieves? Because damn, dude, I thought getting a hand cut off was a harsh punishment for stealing.

I’ve become a big fan of Klassen’s work through these books. As far as I can tell, these are the only two he’s written himself, but he’s illustrated several others that I now want to go get, too. And I need this to hang up in my office, for sure.

I still end all Squatch’s story books with “and then they were eaten by a bear,” because I feel that definitely provides a feeling of closure to the plot arc. I toyed around with the idea of switching to “and then they were eaten by a big fish,” but let’s be honest. We know how things would end up in the wild.

As a wise man once told me, "Bears be bears."

As a wise man once told me, “Bears be bears.”

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& missing it

No YOU haven’t posted on your blog in about a month. Shut up.

It’s been a crazy few weeks around the Sasquatch household. Again. And another big milestone—one for us, not Squatch.

We had our first one-parent nights this month. Don’t worry, Squatch survived. But there were little pieces of me and Karli that suffered in the process.

The first weekend in March, Karli had to go back down to Oklahoma for her job. Squatch and I decided to stay behind, which means that we were having a dude’s weekend all day Saturday and Sunday, with the whole night in between. We had a good time (y’know—some blocks, some storybooks, some poker, some strippers and cigars—normal guy stuff) but his mom missed him and probably broke a few sound barriers in the rental car* on the way back.

*I’m pretty sure she’s probably the first person to do Mach 1 in a sky blue Fiat compact.

Squatch, meet Robster. Robster, Squatch.

Squatch, meet Robster. Robster, Squatch.

The following weekend, it was my turn to leave for a conference in Boston. Only I was gone five days and four nights. Not gonna lie—That. Was. Tough. The first night, I kept hearing phantom baby cries and jumping awake to take care of it, only to realize I was in an overpriced hotel room. The second night, I probably appreciated the full night’s rest without needing to get up and take care of a kid. By the last morning, I was dying to get back. It’s not like I never missed Karli when I was on trips before—of course I did—but this was just another level of separation. I have no idea how parents whose jobs involve regular overnight travel manage to do this.

The toughest part was that he’s at an age where he didn’t really miss me. He’s not really old enough yet. Don’t get me wrong, he lit up like the Vegas Strip when he saw me at the airport, but he couldn’t spend the whole five days talking about how much he missed Daddy. He was almost as excited for the stuffed lobster I got him as he was for me to hold him.

We’re still in that stage where separation is harder on us than it is on him. He adjusts really, really quickly. I know that won’t last for much longer, and his separation anxiety will start to kick in pretty soon, but our separation anxiety is going to get a little kick in the pants soon. Karli got a new job—an outside-the-house job—that starts in a few weeks, which means that we have to start with the dreaded D-word: Dogfighting.

No, wait, wrong post.

Daycare.

We’re steeling ourselves for the inevitability. Karli gets bummed and bemoans abandoning her sweet baby boy, and I tell her that everything will be just fine while shoving down thoughts of him picking up pneumonia and whooping cough and bad habits from the other little rat bastards darlings in the daycare. It’ll be okay, though. I keep telling myself this. On the fortunate side, things have worked out so that we can swing some temporary grandparent babysitting for the couple weeks between when Karli starts and my summer begins so that we really have till August to find the just-right place to take care of him. And it should give plenty of time for Squatch’s separation anxiety to settle in so we’re not the only ones bawling like crazy when he gets dropped off.