One of the coolest things about being a Dad is getting the chance to pass on the books I loved as a kid to my daughter. I was bummed to discover that my favorite larval maker book, Why I Built the Boogle House
, was long out of print and not suited to review here (though I do have my much-loved copy for the kid!), but that sorrow was dispelled by my discovery of a pocket-sized board-book edition of Al Perkins and Eric Gurney's 1969 classic, Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb
Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb is a great, rhythmic poem about monkeys playing drums, with an infectious, earwormy refrain: "Dum ditty dum ditty dum dum dum." It opens with one monkey drumming on his drum with one thumb, and progresses until "millions of monkeys" are drumming on drums (dum ditty dum ditty dum dum dum).
It's not (just) the refrain that makes this book so great -- it's the monkeys. Illustrator Eric Gurney's drumming monkeys are a motley collection of comic beatnik simians, sporting sweater-vests, giant muttonchops, goatees, and big golden rings. Each one bears an expression of such incredible cool and mischief that I could look at them all day.
I'm clearly not the only one. When Poesy wakes up every morning, I go into her room and change her diaper and say, "Did you have a nice sleep, Poesy? What did you dream about?" Every morning this week, she's said the same thing: "Monkeys drumming on drums!"
The pocket-sized edition is great for trips, and the rhythm is a perfect distraction for grumpy car-rides, impatient restaurant meals, and interminable waits for the bus. And unlike many of the kids' books and videos that Poesy wants to play 200 times in a row, I don't get tired of this one, either.
Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb
“Wrapped” is a short film created by Roman Kaelin, Falko Paeper and Florian Wittmann from Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg, at the Institute of Animation, Visual Effects and Digital Postproduction.
Last night my eight-year-old daughter and I enjoyed Pee-wee’s Big Holiday. This is a fantastic return for Pee-wee Herman, and Paul Reubens has done a masterful job. Pee-wee’s charm, innocence, and awesome moral compass are still keeping him out of trouble, despite a cast of delightfully troublesome characters that pop up along the way.
Silicon Valley has managed to break apart the long-locked cable TV bundle. On Thursday, The Federal Communications Commission okayed a proposal to let cable TV customers swap out their Comcast or TWC cable boxes for third-party boxes and applications.
Almost everyone has their smartphone in a case of one kind or another. Beyond simple protection, finding a case that can charge your phone on its own, but doesn’t feel like it’s also adding a couple pounds to the phone’s weight is the tricky part. Billed as the world’s thinnest battery case, the ThinCharge iPhone […]
You never know when new projects, ideas or opportunities can drop into your lap at a moment’s notice. That may require you to learn a new programming language like Python. Or maybe you need a primer on 3D game development. Or you might realize you could use a serious brush-up on iOS mobile creation.Point is, […]
Isn’t it about time to stretch what your Mac can do? I mean, you’ve got plenty of great programs now…but don’t you think you could use some new tools to get your creative, analytical and organizational juices really flowing? It’s spring, so we cleaned up a whole bunch of super-cool apps lying around and packaged […]