1157 – Come on In Bedtime Edition
A sleepy little textbook and the only thing you will need is your covers.
- Christopher Crossed Out
- Fabric Craft Leaves (FCLs)
- Big Purple Parrot Balloon
- Far Side
- Myra Cohn Livingston
- The Red Balloon
Notable Talking Points:
- Most Likely to Cuddle with a Venn Diagram
- Is this marker work?
- Please Step on my Brown Suede Shoes
Episode 1157 – Come On In Bedtime Edition
[START OF RECORDING]
SCOOTER: Friends beyond the binary, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, it’s time for a podcaster who’s coming to you across…beyond time and space and across it, ‘cause it…whatever time it is, it’s important for me to be here for you, to keep you company and take your mind off of stuff and to fill in some of that space with some rambling. I’m not kidding, either. It’s like when there’s…there’s times for quiet and there’s times my mind is quiet and there’s times I would like quiet. The Venn diagram of those overlapping…here’s one thing you could have in bed; a Venn diagram. I mean, probably not at bedtime, but probably a bed isn’t a bad place for a Venn…if you’re making physical Venn diagrams.
If you don’t have access to a drafting table, pull everything off your bed and just use…you could just use your sheet and start moving those circles around. But what was my point? Venn diagrams…and then if you have to take a nap, you could just…lying on Venn diagrams, you know, it might be a little wrink…crinkly, unless you’re using some sort of poly material; then it could be sweat-inducing. But anyway, what in the love…for the love of Venn, for the love of diagrams, could you get to the point? Well, that’s not really what I do. I understand your frustration, though, totally. Really, and a lot of people share it. This is a podcast that’s here to keep you company and take your mind off of stuff so you could fall asleep, because you deserve a good night’s sleep.
What’s gonna happen is we’re gonna have some support — that’s how the show is free twice a week, but you could pay and you don’t have to worry about listening to the support — then there will be a long, meandering intro to ease you into bedtime, and then there will be…tonight will be a discussion of Star Trek: The Next Generation. All to keep you company and take your mind off of stuff so you could fall asleep. So, yeah, that’s what we got going here, and yeah, what do you say? Oh, this is the…yeah, so these are the ways I’m able to do it for you for free twice…oh, welcome to Sleep With Me, the podcast that’s here to keep you company and put you to sleep, with a podcaster that gets mixed up, and…what is the other one? Oh, thanks for making this possible, my patron peeps.
INTRO: [INTRO MUSIC] Hey, are you up all night tossing, turning, mind racing? Trouble getting to sleep? Trouble staying asleep? Well, welcome. This is Sleep With Me, the podcast that puts you to sleep. We do it with a bedtime story. Alls you need to do is get in bed, turn out the lights, and press Play. I’m gonna do the rest. What I’m going to attempt to do is create a safe place where you could set aside whatever’s keeping you awake. It could be thoughts on your mind, thoughts you’re thinking about about the past, the present, the future. So, thinking stuff, it could be feelings, anything coming up for you emotionally that’s there, it could be physical sensations, it could be changes in time or temperature or routine or something else.
The reason I go through that stuff is I just want you to know you’re not alone, and I realize this is a strange digital pseudo whatever. It’s different than a normal thing, but I’m really here to keep you company, but the other…the more important thing is that whatever it is that’s keeping you awake, I might not have been through the same thing, but I can probably relate to how it feels. But like I said, more important than that, there’s hundreds of thousands of other people listening right now that can relate to that and that are nodding their heads. We’re all in kind of agreement that hey, you deserve a good night’s sleep. Hey, you deserve a place you could get some rest, the rest you need so your life is more manageable, so that you could be out there flourishing, a bedtime you could look forward to or feel neutral about that you don’t have to dread.
Those are things you deserve and that are important whether this show provides it or not. So, that’s why the show exists and that’s why people listen to it, really. I mean, it works and it keeps them company and takes their mind off of stuff, but we’re also — a lot of us in the deep, dark night — feeling alone, and this is kinda the…why I just ramble on and on and on. It’s like, so whether you’re listening or not, knowing that it’s optional to listen to me and you could check in and I’ll still be here and that I know how it feels and that other people know how it feels, that’s kinda the only important thing about this podcast. The way I do it is I send my voice across the deep, dark night. I’m gonna use lulling, soothing, creaky, dulcet tones, pointless meanders, superfluous tangents.
So, I’m gonna go off topic, I’m gonna get mixed up, then I’ll forget what I was talking about, then I’ll double back and I’ll say, wait a second, what was I talking about here? I have no idea. Then I’ll pause and…so, that’s kinda pointless meanders, creaky, dulcet tones, and superfluous tangents. I get mixed up, my voice is not traditionally soothing, but it’s here to keep you company and take your mind off of stuff because you deserve a good night’s sleep. So, that’s how it kinda works. But you say, wait a second, that doesn’t…and I say, don't worry, I’m gonna explain it a little bit more.
So, the couple things to know other than you deserve a good night’s sleep and that’s where…we’re here for is one, this podcast is not for everybody but it’s almost not…it doesn’t work for anyone…not every…I mean, I knew…I get those e-mails where people say, hey, it worked for me on the first try, and I’m so happy about that. But for most people, on the first try you get here…and maybe you heard about this show on a list or somebody told you about it or you were just looking for something and you searched and it came up…and you’ve been trying stuff, right, to fall asleep, ‘cause it’s rough. Maybe you’re like a lot of people that have spent thousands and thousands of dollars on stuff to help you sleep and you say, man, I just want something that helps.
So, you get to this show and then you’re like, what is this dude even talking about? Was he talking about…does he know the difference between time…does he know what a Venn…does he know a Venn diagram has two N’s or does he only suspect it? I’d say, there you go. There’s another mystery; a Venn diagram in…a suspicious Venn diagram. I mean, that could be within it. Suspicious of Venn diagrams; there’s one circle right there. That’s like a Far Side. I don't know what the rest of it would be, ‘cause I’m all…this podcast is full of half-jokes. I’m on the far…if…I don't know if there was ever…I think there was Far Side fan-fests in the past. But you’d say, I’m on the far side of Far…on the far side of Far Side, man. Look it up; trust me, if you say, what’s a Far Side? I say, well, you’ll enjoy it, I think.
Oh, but this podcast isn’t for everybody, so I can’t guarantee you’ll enjoy this podcast. But I can only tell you what a million people have literally told me; it took two or three tries to get used to your show, or I loathed you and then years later I re-listened to your podcast and then I realized, oh, it’s supposed to be like that. I had no idea that you really were on the far side of the Far Side. I didn’t even know what that means, but now I do even though I don’t even know…I’m only nineteen. I don’t get that context, but I get it. I get it even though I don’t. So, what was my point there? Oh, so yeah, this podcast…just give it a few tries and see how it goes. You got nothing to lose. If you already can’t stand me, sleepwithmepodcast.com/nothankyou has a list of other sleep podcasts on there, so give those a try.
But what I’m gonna do is…oh, what else do I need to explain? That’s what I’m gonna do, is…oh, a couple other things to know. This is a podcast you don’t really listen to. You just kinda barely listen. It’s almost like background noise that you could just…you say, well, I could just barely pay attention to this. So, you just kinda barely listen. You could listen to me at a mumble, you could listen to me across the room, you could imagine that I’m a TV on in another room, or you can listen. If you need a break during the day or you can’t sleep, this podcast is slightly listenable. It’s like…it’s not easy listening ‘cause, you know, sometimes easy…I think they don’t call it that anymore. There used to be channels called easy listening, right?
You say, I’m not in…when I’m not in the mood for easy listening, it’s not…there’s nothing easy about it. I say, I’d prefer no songs about sunshine or country roads or friends or anything…I’m not look…I’d prefer…I need some hard…you know, I need some hardcore. I can’t…no easy…I’m not having a easy listening day today, so I do not need anyone having a duet with a Muppet or a song that will in the future become a duet with a Muppet. That’s not a blanket statement on easy listening and I’m not saying today’s the day, but if you get me…like, three…it’d be over three hundred where you say, is today the day for easy listening? I’d say, I don't know. I don't even know…I don't know if that exists anymore, but we could try some yacht rock and we could go from there. I’ll meet you at yacht rock, how about that?
Then I’ll know. I say, nope, can’t…sorry. Christopher…here’s a easy joke; Christopher crossed out today. Like, he can’t do it. So, okay, so…Chris…you could call me Christopher Cross with a furrowed brow. Oh, boy. Oh, so…oh yeah, this is a sleep podcast, you’re saying to yourself? Oh, that you barely listen to. Also does not put you to sleep. There’s no pressure to fall asleep with this show. I’ll be here for over an hour, and my job is to keep you company and take your mind off of stuff, not to put you to sleep. I’m here to be your friend in the deep, dark night, your bore-friend, your bore-bae, your bore-sib, your bore-bud, your bore-bestie, your bore-bor, your neigh-bore, your bore-bruh. I’m here to just talk to you and you could listen to me or not, or if you wake up you could listen to me or you could listen to me while you fall asleep.
I’m here to keep you company. So, it’s almost like you’re listening to the podcast and the next thing you know it’s tomorrow or you’re waking up to use the loo or whatever it is and you say, okay, let me put that podcast back on. But there are people that listen all night long, there’s people that set sleep timers. The show is structured in a very specific way just because it’s getting put out to the world for free, so there’s only one way to put it out, but then you can kind of adjust from there. But it is very intentionally structured. It starts off with a greeting; friends beyond the binary, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, so you feel seen and welcomed in, and you say, I might check that out. Then there’s support so the podcast can be free, and that’s…say, okay, that’s easier for me to try, a free sample.
I say, well, it’s kinda like a free sample, but it’s supported. But yeah, it comes out twice a week for free. So you say, oh, wow, great. Then there’s…separate from the support which we’re in now is an intro, which is a show within the show. For some reason when people really have a strong objection to the support…it probably ends up the podcast isn’t gonna be for them anyway, but they lump the intro in with it and they say there’s thirty minutes of commercials or something, and they miss out on the intro which I kinda feel bad about, but it does take two or three tries. Even then they might say I loathe this show. But the intro is a lot like…long-term listeners…not every long-term listener, but a lot of them’s favorite part because it’s just us chatting here, me and you, and I’m chatting…you say, well, you’re kinda chat…you’re chit-chatting, I guess.
You’re chattering but not in a cold way. I say, you got it right. Can’t wait to cuddle up with my Venn diagram later. Oh, boy. But what was my…? Oh, so…I got mixed up picturing myself in bed with a Venn diagram, holding it. Cuddles with Venn diagrams; there could be another one. You say, no wonder you don’t get any responses on those. Is that really what you put on your profile? No, on my imaginary profile, yeah. So, cuddles with Venn diagrams…Most Likely to Cuddle With A Venn Diagram; I would take that award. I would for sure. I’d say…but then it’d probably be…there’d have to be an…well, depending on the…if it’s made of some sort of metallic material, ceramic, anything breakable…is it a cuddly Venn diagram? You say, well, I’m…that’s another one, cuddles with cuddly Venn diagrams. I say, within that…oh, okay.
Huh, interesting. So, what was I saying? Oh, the intro goes on and on and on to ease you into bedtime, so you could skip it. Some people start the show at twenty minutes, some people are falling asleep, some people are already asleep. But for most listeners it’s part of their wind down routine and it does take — for me — a little while to wind down or more than a little while to ease into bedtime. So, the intro is part of that. You could be getting ready for bed, you could be doing some sort of other relaxing activity, or you could just be in bed getting comfortable but not…no pressure to fall asleep yet. The intro’s like a buffer between…that’s how the show…I mean, I don't know when the intro popped over ten minutes, but it was probably in the first hundred or hundred and fifty episodes.
That’s when the show…early on, the podcast wasn’t an hour plus because I didn’t realize, oh, this is supposed to put you at ease, right? You don’t need any pressure to fall asleep. You already have enough. So, the intro’s a part of that, like a landing strip. That’s why it goes on and on and on and it’s a show within a show. It’s not part of the support or anything. It’s here for you, and for everybody else listening, it’s kinda like a little…I don't know, it’s where I get to show my skills and put you at ease, be myself.
So, that’s the intro, then there’s support between the intro and the show so it could be free, then there’s our bedtime story, which I’m not sure what this one’s gonna be yet, believe it or not. I got a couple of shows I gotta record. Then there will be thank-yous at the end. So, that’s the structure of the show, that’s why I make the show. I’m so glad you’re here. I really work hard on this podcast. I really yearn and I strive, I really hope I can help you fall asleep. So, thanks again for coming by, and here’s how we’re able to do it for free twice a week.
Alright everybody, Scoots here. This is another textbook episode. Textbook Sleep With Me. I’ll be rambling on and on and on. I have in my hands…which is interesting ‘cause I was thinking, where did I get this from? I will say it was probably the garbage. That’s where I normally…so, this is a textbook from my youth, my…I think my far youth. I haven’t done any research about it, but I can…I know I had this textbook and I spent a lot of time with it because this is one that is, oh boy, seared in my memory, the cover. I don't know about the contents. So, it’s a textbook from elementary school or grammar school or primary school, depending on where in the world you are. I’m not sure what year, so I’m gonna over it. Let’s go over the back cover.
The back is a…the back cover is very robust printing because it is still…I don't know if it was originally a two-toned book, but the back cover is a bright reddish-orange, like a crayon that you would use to cover…color part of the sun. I mean, this book has to be quite old, and I found it probably in the garbage or in a recycle. Most likely, though…when I say garbage, I also mean boxes outside of people’s houses on the street before garbage day. When I go running or walking the dog, there’s usually…a day before garbage day, people will put a box out with their semi-junk. That’s where I’m pretty sure I found this, ‘cause it’s in really great shape, though I could have found it…yeah, I don't know where else I would have found it. I can almost picture a couple times…there’s boxes full of books.
So, anyway, it says Level 5, so I don't know if that means the fifth grade. It says Reading 720, so I don't know if that’s the reading level, and it’s Jinn…Ginn…Ginn & Company. A Xerox Education company. So, I don't know what any of that means, and it’s probably out of date. What’s interesting though is if it is fifth grade, there’s a great irony in there which was fifth grade was definitely…I’m trying to say this in the softest, sleepiest way possible…when in my childhood, that was the stretch where this podcast was forged ‘cause that’s when things kinda felt like they went off the rails for me, was fifth grade. I mean, I had already had some school challenges, but fifth grade was where…fifth and sixth grade, maybe fourth, but I’m pretty sure…first, second…so, let’s see, kindergarten…or, not first…okay, second; a lot of trouble in second grade.
Third, fourth, and fifth, I’d…I don't know, I’d have to get on a couch. I’d have…I’m not sure about those ones. One of those years…they’re…I can think of…went pretty good. Huh, no ideas, I guess. Maybe…oh, two…maybe two of those years…? But so, anyway, so it’s just ironic. If this is from fifth grade…I don't know if it is. No, it’s definitely…I don't think it’s from fifth grade, opening it up. But that doesn’t mean it’s not. I have no idea what a fifth…I mean, I feel like when my daughter was in fifth grade…I’m not kidding; that’s how my brain works, but I feel like my daughter was reading books in fifth grade, but…fifth, sixth…I don't know. So, anyway, the title of the book is May I Come In? Now, the front cover is an orange. It’s a faded orange. I would say a sherbert…I definitely feel like it’s a sherbert orange at this point.
May I Come In? is written in…with outline and a red background and then a yellow box around it. Then there’s…this is what I remember about it, and I mean…I guess bravo to whoever designed the cover, because it’s…if you said, Scoots, we have $12 million; can you do the cover of one of your books…your textbooks from childhood? I wouldn’t be able to do that. I’d say, well, looks like I’m missing out on that. But seeing it triggered the memory and I said, holy cow, I remember this, right? So, in some sense, of great gratitude. Then I say, wow, and I get…the reason I took it was ‘cause I said, I could make this into a podcast episode. I still have that high school one somewhere, though I have no idea where it is. Okay, so, this one, it says May I Come In? at the top.
Then there’s different doors or windows that are open, and it’s kind of like a diorama. On the first one is a…not a puppet but a butterfly, a yellow butterfly. The doors are open. It’s a window and it’s kind of a…like a plush butterfly looking through it. Then in the middle one is an arched doorway or window with kind of a three-dimensional paper craft city with stars in the sky, like the background of a city and then stars in the sky. Then next to that is a door with a plush rabbit looking out of it, and its ear is poking out of the door. So, also good design of making it three-dimensional, but nothing so interesting…obviously I spent a lot of time staring at it. If you’re under the age of thirty, I’ve got some other…maybe even under the age of…probably under the age of thirty, buckle your seatbelt ‘cause I got a couple more textbook things to tell you about.
But yeah, the rabbit’s there, then below the rabbit is a paper craft rainbow coming out of a door into a cloud on the cover of the book. Then in the center is a door with two shelves glued to the background, maybe? But our friend from the door next door is looking through that door at the shells and the rainbow. It’s clearly a puppet, a puppet…a long, thin puppet. A worm, I guess, but a multicolored worm, green and purple and red striped…even a orange stripe in kind of a barn door. But so, when I was a kid…and a lot of people…but if…not everybody, not my daughter. So, I’m pretty sure when you went to school — and this has it in here — the books were not your property. It used to…there was…and I don't know…I don't want to blame austerity for everything, but you would get a book and you would be loaned the book.
It was property of your school district, right? So, you didn’t have to pay for your books and the teacher didn’t have to pay for them, but you did if you messed your book up. So, you’d put…you’d take a paper shopping bag and go through some manner of folding and…my mom probably had to do it, though I think at some point I learned how to do it. Maybe I’ll do it on…for promotion of the show, if somebody could remind me of that. But you would put a cover on the book and then you could draw on the cover, which was nice, though this one was not drawn on ‘cause I don’t see…usually it would leave a indentation.
I mean, this book was never used, ‘cause you would open up the front cover and there was a stamp on the inside of these books that I think was…so, it would say…it says, ‘This book is the property of’, then it says the state, the province, the county, the parish, the school district, or other, and you would write that in. Then it says book number, and usually the teachers would do that. They’d say number one of twenty, number two of twenty, so then they could write that down. Then you say issued to, and you’d put your name there. Year issued, and then the teacher would fill out issued. Like, the condition; issued and returned, like new or used or good or great. There was even instructions; pupils, to whom this textbook is issued, must not write on any page or mark any part of it in any way. Consumable textbooks accepted.
So, that would be one that you were supposed to write in or that you’d rip the pages out of. But this was a textbook. Those, I think, were called work books. Two, the following terms…oh, this is helpful. The following terms should be used in recording the condition of the book; new, good, fair, poor, or bad. I’m not sure how many books my parents had to buy, but I’m probably sure…I’m sure it was a lot. Okay, so…okay, in May I Come In?, it has all the people associated with it. I don't know, editors, consultants, then it has acknowledgments of the…’cause it’s a lot of short stories they’re reusing. Okay, so the copyright for this book is 1976, which I was not…so, wow, that’s wild.
I don't know if they had more…that’s interesting ‘cause I was not reading it in 1970…it wasn’t anywhere where I could read anything in 1976, so…wow. So, this book was already pretty old when I got my hands on it as a kid. But maybe there was…it doesn’t say any edition number. So, I don't know how many years this was in use. This could also explain why I’m so behind on everything. Okay, this is interesting, then there’s the continent…contents. The first book…first unit is A Little Bit of Leaf, A Bit of Weed. That’s Unit 1. Unit 2 is City Places. Oh, this is interesting ‘cause this may play in to why, as a child, between Sesame Street and reading, I was obsessed with living in an urban environment, like New York City, particularly.
Unit 3 was Imagine, Unit 4, Fly Away, Unit 5, Old Tales to Tell, and then a book-length story; A Home for Bunny, Margaret Wise Brown. Then we open it to…we’re on Page 6 and 7 if you’re playing along at home. There’s a two-page spread similar to the cover. On the left side are two window…it’s all that orange-ish…reddish orange background, but it says…on the left side of the two-page spread is open doors and a paper craft cityscape during a sunset. Just a one-color red sky, skyscrapers, and then three levels of paper craft bushes and trees. Then in the center is a arched door with dried flowers and plants coming out of it. Then on the right side are what I would say are…not paper craft, but knit craft? I don't know what the right word for it is.
Fabric craft leaves from trees, a yellow one and then a couple different shades of green and bluish-green. Then it says a little bit of leaf – a bit of…oh no, a bit of leaf, a bit of weed. Okay, so it’s kind of basic writing, but…so, I don't know what age again, but it’s not…I don't know, second or third grade, maybe? I don't know. The first story’s called The Fox. The art is realistic, so there’s a realistic beautiful red fox with a long tail on the left side of the page. The sentences are simple. I’ll read one sentence, but I don't want to…I’m just commenting on it. The fox…oh no…on the next page I’ll read it. There’s a rabbit, a jackrabbit like it’s in mid-hop, and the fox is in the background. It says a little rabbit is looking for a bit of something to eat. He is looking for a bit of leaf, a bit of weed. So, there’s the chapter of the…or the title of the unit.
Okay, the story goes more. That’s Page 8 and 9. Then we have a two-page spread with a log, a fox, a mousey-poo, beautiful flowers. This looks like watercolors, but I don't know…I mean, you’d have to be really talented. The fox has fur and everything, so I don't know if it’s watercolors and something else or just a really talented artist. I kinda remember this story. Then there’s a fox visiting a farm and there’s a…it’s at a hen house, but the hens are safely behind…whatever you call it, chicken wire. The fox is just looking at them, kinda panting. So, really, no wonder I couldn’t pay…the art…so, this is literally a two-page spread with the hens, the fox, some wildflowers and grass, and there’s only one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine words. One sentence.
But I guess you could say if you didn’t know it, what is the fox looking at? It’s looking at the hens. So, it’s helpful. Then there’s a puppy chasing the fox away, and there’s a farmhouse; another two-page spread. Oh, and it’s written in a poetic way. And away the fox runs, away, away, away, written in that style where it’s like…I don't know, they would have explained that in the class, but I wasn’t paying attention enough. But yeah, there’s…the fox is running and the dog is running. There’s a farmhouse, blue sky, trees, grass. So, this one is kinda glamorizing, to me, country life or living in the…a plain…in the plains. Okay, now we jump to the next story, The Mouse and the Snowman. It’s entirely different. I mean, entirely different style of art. It’s actually…wow, cool. Still realistic-style art, maybe with watercolors.
Clearly…I mean, not clearly, but probably a different artist, but also realism. This one is a winter snowscape. We’re in the branches of a tree and a mouse is sleeping in a bed of leaves. It’s very cute but realistic, and in the background in the distance there’s hills and there’s also a house or a couple houses. Maybe a village, maybe a farmhouse. Then in the next page there’s…the mouse is kinda sniffing around in branches in the snow. Then in the next one is two kids going out to play from a house. They’re holding hands. They’re puffed up in…they got scarves and hats and boots on and mittens. The mouse is kinda hanging onto a branch, looking at them. Again, there’s no leaves, knots in the branches, different colors.
Then in the next page is a two-page…a two-panel thing with a panel in the background and then something set against the panel. This is the one sentence; the little mouse is looking. Again, you could see that the mouse is watching the two kids build a snow-person, and the snow-person…they’re building it in the back panel and then in the foreground, the snow-person is completed. It has a fishing hat on, stick arms, so Olaf-esque. No carrot nose, but coal-based…and the kids are eating what seems to be cookies or potatoes, raw potatoes, but I doubt it’s raw potatoes. The kids leave and the mouse comes on the next two pages and finds crumbs. It’s eating the crumbs. There’s a really cool shot on Page 22.
I mean, even though it looks like a photograph taken from the ground, it’s…but it’s art and it’s the mouse up on its hind feet eating one of the crumbs. Bits and bits of gingerbread, it says. The snow-person is towering above the mouse. Then they show the mouse giving itself a bath. A raccoon is watching the mouse take a bath. Oh wow, and this is really good because the raccoon is not a part of this story. But then we go to the next page. I definitely remember this. This one has photos. It’s called The Raccoons. Some nature shots; the first one is two baby raccoons snuggling inside of a den or a log, a den inside a log or something. So, nature…actual real nature photography. It’s pretty cool ‘cause it’s kinda faded because the book’s older. Kinda talks about the raccoons; their home, they have a mother.
At first they can’t see, so they can’t play. Then in the next page, Page 25, there’s another young raccoon holding onto a tree. Probably the cutest thing I’ve ever seen in a long time other than my dog Koa, in case she’s listening. But pretty darn cute, the raccoon’s eyes. Then there’s a third page of the two baby raccoons playing on the end of a stick, kinda chasing each other. Then another style of art; really cool. This one is a little bit more seventies style, stylistically, I would say. Even the writing. It’s called Tracks in the Snow. No authors on this. This one is a poem. I think there is in the…after the unit I’ll go back and look. But there’s tracks in the snow, and then up a hill, and then there’s a tree. I don't know, this one looks like it could be marker work or…it’s definitely pen outlines and either watercolor or some sort of marker-type work.
Hiding behind a brown tree holding onto the trunk of the tree is a squirrel, not in a realism style but in a pretty close to…I don't know. I don't know the terminology for art within textbooks. But a really cool feature on the bottom-left, down the hill, is trees in the background. But that one is…they’re…the trees are outlined but then they have kind of a stained glass look to them. This is a poem; it’s like, what animal ran on a hill in the snow? Follow the tracks and you will know. This is a two-page spread. Again, some vibrant colors, and the top page is the squirrel and a tree. Kinda…oh boy, man, the colors on this; purples and greens, kinda pastely. Then there’s a hill down and then there’s a rabbit or a hare, I don't know, running down the hill.
Then behind the rabbit or the hare is a bush and then some more stained-glass-style trees. Then we come to another two-page spread with a bunch of animals and a bunch of animal tracks. So, again, you could…this would give the teacher a chance to really do some flair, ‘cause you say, whose tracks are these? Oh, those are rabbit tracks. Whose tracks are those? Fox tracks? So, there’s a rabbit with huge ears, a fox with huge ears, a bird, a brown squirrel, a gray squirrel, a hill, two trees, bushes, and then another mound of dirt and rock. Yeah, cool. Very cool. Then there’s…the next chapter is a different title. Not sleepy, but…Animals Can Hide, it’s called. So, there’s a…this is photographs, so there’s a night shot of a squirrel climbing up a tree or on a tree.
Man, I can’t believe…I guess its claws are holding it on there, but I don't know how. It’s on a big trunk. Then there’s a raccoon on the next page against a winter-scape, and this raccoon is not on a tree or a main…on small branches holding onto two different small branches, distributing its weight. Then there’s…oh, this is cute, too; a red fox poking its head out of a den. It looks pretty young, but it could just be a small fox. There’s a turtle being sniffed by a dog and it’s saying, I’m staying in my shell, but that’s kinda cute. Okay, I definitely remember this photograph. So, this is a full two-page spread of painted desert. It says The Desert. The sun comes up. It is time to take the sheets from the night pen. It’s clearly your typical painted desert like you see in Utah or a Bugs Bunny…or Wiley Coyote, Roadrunner cartoons, or Westerns.
But in the foreground is a pen with goats and sheep in it, it looks like, and some brush, some trees. Oh, and then we have some sand dunes right out of the…Hollywood sand dunes, but not the…what you would associate…just with the…just pure desert. There’s some grass, there’s dunes, and in the background are beautiful rock formations. Then there’s a young woman or a girl in a green dress, black coat, hair tied back. She’s looking at the sheep or watching the sheep. Her hands are in her pockets. I only see her back. Rising in…so, the sheep are in the foreground, some brush, some scrub brush and stuff, and then those towers, those painted rock…painted desert rock towers you know you think of, all the way in the far distance. Then we have another…oh, this one…okay, interesting. This one’s cool.
So, this one, it says Follow the Tracks. How many pages is this? Oh, it’s just two pages. So it’s just a two-page spread. On the left side it says Follow the Tracks. It’s says rabbit tracks, raccoon tracks, fox tracks, Kim’s tracks. There’s four sets of tracks; you have the rabbit tracks, the raccoon tracks, the fox tracks, and Kim’s tracks. Kim’s a human with boots. You could follow them all over the page. Then there’s questions; did the raccoon go near the fox’s home? Let’s see if we can answer it. Okay, that’s the fox tracks. It must be…its home is on the right side, I’m guessing. The fox goes all the way across the page. Okay, no, I don't think it did. Did the rabbit go up a hill? Oh, the rabbit’s actually in the picture. Let me see, rabbit tracks…are those Kim’s tracks or rabbit tracks?
No, those are rabbit…I’d say, yes, the rabbit did go up what looks like a hill to me. Did the rabbit go near the fox’s home? No. Did Kim follow the raccoon? Yes, it looks like their tracks are in parallel. She could have been…the raccoon could be Kim’s companion, though. Did the fox follow the raccoon? No, it did not. The fox just goes from right to left across the page. The rabbit more or less goes from left to right. Did Kim know…go…now we’re getting into trick questions. No, Kim did not go near the fox’s home. Did the fox go near Kim’s home? No. We don’t know where Kim lives, technically. This would have been where I was in school. I’d say, well, how do we know that’s the fox’s…well, where’s Kim’s home?
But I mean, if the fox had a view of Kim’s home…if what…the houses in the picture are Kim’s home, that we’re assuming…and that’s the end of that chapter. So let’s just go to the credits, here. Oh, it doesn’t have any credits for anything in there, so…and interestingly, there’s a bullet point before Follow the Tracks, maybe ‘cause it’s an activity? Then there’s no questions or anything. Okay, but this is the chapter I’ve been waiting for, because I’m sure this affected my life greatly in a positive way. City Places…and it’s, again, a two-page spread. On the left side is a…there’s paper craft clouds on all…both sides of the page and then there’s open doors, and then there’s…almost looks like a woodcut or a drawing of a old building and a fire…what is that? Fire hydrant in front of it. Again, fire hydrants were glorified when I was a kid.
So then…and on the right side is a picture…a aerial picture of…looks like a borough of New York with three to five-story buildings and one, two, three, four blocks. So, yeah, and that’s City Places. This is Page 44 and 45. Oh boy, I definitely remember this story for some reason. It’s called New Boots and it shows…it’s a two-page spread. It’s done in pen, in nice, bold pen or art pen, and then just little touches of color. Maybe pencil? I think pencil color? Not full color, just enough to give everybody…so their clothes have color and stuff like that too, and their hair and everything. There’s even people in the background. So, it’s a shoe store and James is there, talking to the shoe store salesman. Now, back then you had…I think there was even that…Married with Children; you had to wear a suit to sell shoes. So, this was pre-mall era.
Or there was malls but they weren’t as popular. I mean, maybe this was in a mall. I don't…it doesn’t say. But James is talking to this salesman. James looks like the same age as the kids that would be reading this book. Then there’s other people and we learn later it’s James’ mother and sister. They’re sitting back kinda watching. But James is looking up at the man, the shoe salesman, and asking hey, you have boots? Then he says, yeah, let’s check some out. Then James and his mother are looking at boots and James finds some boots. So, in one…in the first picture on the next page is…James is holding a boot and the salesperson’s holding a boot, and they’re clearly in the process of trying them on. Then the mom and the…the sister’s in the mom’s lap and they’re looking on. James is saying hey, will you…can we get these boots?
The mom says, yes. Then on the next page is his sister, Penny. So, in the next page, James has his feet up. He’s looking at the boots on his feet. He’s pretty happy. The mom is sitting there next to James. His sister is standing holding a boot and the salesperson’s kinda looking on, holding their suit…part of their suit. A three…they have a suit vest on, even. James’ sister’s name is Penny and she wants these nice red rain boots, it looks like. But the mom says, you don’t need boots right now. I mean, these kids are growing, you know? Oh yeah, I definitely remember this story so much. Holy cow, because it changes…the story changes, even. But then…so then…but Penny doesn’t seem that disappointed. Then we go to a new page and the salesperson is handing James a balloon with a smiley face on it, a red balloon.
Wow, it’s amazing how some of this stuff affects you. You never…it never leaves you but you…I don't know. I can definitely remember this story so much. So, the salesman is handing James a red balloon and James is looking at him, holding…taking the balloon. So, that’s another thing; kids today, you don’t get a free…this is the kinda stuff that stores would do. They’d give you a balloon when you bought stuff or something. I’m pretty sure…I mean, I’m pretty sure…or that’s what I based my life’s expectations on. So, I’d say…my mom would say, well, let’s go get shoes. I’d say, does this store give you a free balloon when you get shoes? No. That only happens in your educational textbooks. Are you sure there’s no stores…? Well, yeah, there’s a store, but we…’cause we would go to…I can’t remember the place.
I’ve talked about it in other podcasts. It was on Geddes Ave. Doesn’t exist anymore. It was before…oh no, there was Marshalls back then, or T.J. Maxx, but it was the kinda place where…it was a very dusty place. There was the salespeople; I think they all worked there. It was a discount shoe store where they would buy, whatever. I mean, we had six kids in our family. I’m sure all their shoes were good. That’s when I got those…or that was one of the first times before I found other substances to make me feel good. I picked out a pair…I was old enough and this might have been…this was a little bit older than James, but I picked out a pair of suede shoes with Velcro. They were dress shoes ‘cause we had to wear dress shoes to school. They were sneaker…they had a sneaker bottom but they were suede shoes, brown suede shoes.
More than one tone of brown, too, with a gigantic Velcro enclosure so you didn’t have to tie them. I remember I thought these shoes were gonna change my life. I was like, this is it. All my problems are over. Girls will start liking me, I won't get in trouble at school anymore. These shoes are going to change everything. Like the universal story of human…being human goes, the first day of school…I’ve talked about this on…before. I always had friends at school, but as far as the grammar school…the order of whatever you want to call it, of…I was like, third from…second from…or third from the bottom, or competing as far…and the kid that was on the bottom, he was the first person that saw my shoes and he let me know that I probably should be on the bottom.
I don't know if I wore the shoes again or not, but…can’t remember. But yeah, that’s the story of my brown suede shoes. Please step on my brown suede shoes. So, back to the textbook. James is getting a balloon but he’s so loving, this James, he gives…since Penny didn’t…he goes, I got boots. Why don’t you take the balloon, Penny? Penny says, now I have something new, too. Thank you, James, thank you. She’s staring at the balloon. Then we go into another story, The Red Balloon, where Penny is clearly skipping with the balloon. James is kick-dancing with the balloon. The mom’s smiling. Then we go…okay, this is a more cautionary tale. Oh, I remember this for sure, ‘cause the dog’s name is Jet. So, maybe they are at the mall. So, mom says, don’t play with the balloon in this next store or whatever, or wherever they are.
Penny is a bit like Scoots. She stops to talk to a dog and says, do you like my red balloon? Then the dog runs away with her balloon. This may have been the first piece of fanfiction I wrote about this dog, Jet. In the next page, Jet is running away with the balloon. Penny’s running after it, frowning, and the dog’s owner is in the background saying no, Jet, oh no. Oh yeah, this is amazing textbook design. Then the next page is a department store, like a dress section. But I guess these are bath robes…glamorous bath robe section. So, there’s about one, two, three, four, five mannequins in glamorous robes, and the…Jet’s owner is looking for Jet. Jet’s hiding behind one mannequin, under the robe, with the balloon sticking out. But the mannequin’s head is blocking it. The mom says to Penny, don't worry.
The woman’s looking for it. Penny goes, I’m never…this was me. She says, I lost my balloon forever. I’ll never get it back. Then it goes into another story called Where is Jet? Everybody’s looking for Jet. Oh, it is either a department store…’cause we can see people coming down a escalator and there’s…Penny is talking to maybe a salesperson in a sweater-vest, and James and mom are looking around. Oh, and the person said, you looking for something? Yeah, a dog with a red balloon. The man says, a dog? A dog with a red balloon? But then James has found Jet, or says, I see Jet. So, he’s pulling them off. Again we get another shot of…maybe a department store. There’s a escalator in the background. Then the woman is with Jet on the next page. The balloon is popped.
Penny’s hugging her mom, who’s down…squatting down to hug her daughter. James is looking concerned, and the man in the green sweater-vest is looking concerned. The mom says, don't worry, we’ll get a new balloon, Penny. Oh my gosh, flat…this is like…this is my life here. I can’t believe this. This story is…this is such a big part of my life, just ‘cause I’m…I’m two pages ahead of you, anyway. So then the man…the next page, everybody’s happy. The man in the greenish sweater-vest has his hands on his hip, but he’s smiling, looking at Penny. Penny is stretching her arms above her head in joy, and then Chet and Jet’s caretaker, the woman…she has a purple hat. The woman in the purple hat, I’ll say. Everybody’s smiling and the man’s saying, we have animal balloons, which…I’ve still never seen a balloon of this quality before.
I mean, maybe at a theme park. But so, on the next page, Penny is holding a balloon, a parrot balloon. It’s a purple parrot balloon. Wow, alliteration, too; a big, purple parrot balloon. Penny is holding…her nose is to the beak of the balloon. The balloon is shaped like a parrot. It has purple but it also has some feather action. It has blush on his cheek and eye, and then its beak is orange. Then the woman says, hey, you want that purple balloon? You can have it. Penny says, great. You got a dog; I got a parrot balloon. That’s the end of the story. Oh, and Jet’s jumping for joy, but not at…maybe at the balloon, but Penny’s too high up for Jet to reach it or something. Then another story I remember, which is…takes places in the city. It’s called Pigeons and Popcorn, with Toni, who’s looking at the buildings, pigeons.
Toni’s waiting for her sister. A woman says, hey, are you lost? She goes, no, I’m waiting for my sister. Then we see a doorman, which is very unique to New York City, mostly. At least, I associate…we see building is number 72. Penny’s…or, not Penny; Toni’s waving at somebody. Then we get some great city shots. We have a garbage truck and Toni’s friend Mike Plark eating popcorn, but he waves at Toni and drops his popcorn. We even have people going…walking by. Different style art, somewhat realistic but a little bit cartoonish. Then we see pigeons going after Mike’s popcorn. In the background is a clothing store and a grocery store, two kids on bikes. Then Mike’s trying to chase the pigeon away from the popcorn. There’s even a firetruck driving by in the background.
Then Toni comes to help Mike get the pigeons away from the popcorn. Then the art changes to be less chaotic and there’s an…a woman there in the foreground, and Toni and Mike are in the background. They’re in a very nice park and they’ve taken a step back to watch the pigeons eating the popcorn. Then in the next picture is Toni’s sister, and her sister has brought popcorn for Mike and Toni. They say, now we have popcorn, too. Then the next one takes place in the city. It’s called Isabelle. The class is going out. There’s a older person; I can’t tell if they’re a teacher. David Yi says, you can’t guess where we’re going. So, there’s someone…they look like a teenager, but they…I don't know if they’re…I don't know. I don't remember this story as well.
There’s one, two, three, four, five, six, seven children…almost done, though…they say, are we going to the zoo? Oh, Penny’s in this. I don't know if it’s the same Penny. Pete, Penny…no, that’s David. We going to the airport? No, we already went to the airport. What about that building? No. So, the kids are looking up at a building, then there’s going to the fire…a fire…the fire department and they’re looking at a firetruck. The kids are climbing on it. Now there’s more kids and more adults. So, let’s see, there’s two adults and one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, eleven, twelve, thirteen, fourteen, fifteen kids climbing on the firetruck. Then the kids are talking to a fire-person or firefighter. One, two, three, four kids. They hand in their hat, and then the hat is missing on the next page.
So, they’re all looking for this. One, two, three, four, five, six kids looking for the hat. Then they say, there’s my hat. Isabelle is pretending to drive the firetruck wearing the hat. Let’s see how many kids are in this one. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight…eleven, so I hope the other four kids are somewhere responsible. Then they all leave. That was Engine House 39. Then there’s a poem by Myra Cohn Livingston about buildings with a nice pointillism style. Then there’s Old Buildings and New. There’s one building getting knocked down and another one built. Again, this goes to my education as a child. I’m not kidding; when I was this age, my dream was to work on girders on skyscrapers ‘cause I love…I don't know, I just always wanted…it was so glamorous, with great views and some excitement.
That’s what I always wanted to do as a kid, and live in New York City and work on girders on skyscrapers. Part of that happened. But yeah, they show people…there’s cranes and dump trucks. This is…kinda plays in nice…this is just a two-page spread. Oh no, then we got two more pages of construction, people working on girders. There’s a guy riding on a girder, there’s a concrete truck. What are those called? Cement mixer. There’s bricks, there’s girders, then there’s people working on the interior of a building. Then there’s another poem in…is this a city? Elephants and lions, trees and parks, people working, boys playing, big buildings, big airport, big trucks, animal tracks, new homes, men helping machines work.
Then on the next page, there’s…oh, what machine is like this? Okay, so this is the quiz part. So, there’s a dump truck, a crane holding a log, and a drill. Then there’s a elephant holding a log. You say, okay, the elephant is like the crane. Then there’s a donkey holding some hay and then there’s a woodpecker drilling a hole. Then that’s the end of that chapter, so we got halfway through this book. I don't know, maybe I’ll do the rest as another episode, or I don't know. But goodnight, everybody. I hope you enjoyed May You Come in to Dreamland. Goodnight.
[END OF RECORDING]
(Transcribed by Leah Hervoly)