Last library day, as I gathered together all the detritus that needed to return to its library home in order to keep our nickels safe, Kiddo#3 had a great idea. We love penguins in this house. Therefore we would get penguins out of the library.
I was less enthusiastic. “Penguins?”
He nodded. “I want a penguin movie!”
Lately the youngest two Kiddos have been into what Kiddo#4 calls “an animal movie.” He likes nature shows featuring real animals. The library has a lot of Discovery Animals on VHS, and they’ve also gotten a series called Under The Deep or something like that. I’ve also shown them Zoboomafoo, and once again, Zabooland has made an appearance in my house. May God have mercy on all of us.
So at first I was trying to remember if there was a documentary about penguins in the kids’ section (other than March of the Penguins) and Kiddo#2 piped up, “How about Happy Feet?”
I said, “No.”
The inevitable: “Whhhhhhyyyy?”
Me: “Because Happy Feet is awful.”
I know that for professional reasons I’m not supposed to say anything in public even remotely hinting that anything ever produced anywhere is less than an object of my unreserved delight. My agent just broke into a cold sweat reading me deliver the above opinion. But precisely because I went ahead and violated that rule — that’s how you know just how bad a movie was Happy Feet.
Into the library we went. Over to the online catalog search we ventured. And yes, there were two movies that featured penguins, although I won’t speak to the quality of either of them (only to say they were Happy Feet‘s superior) and home we went.
As I started the car, Kiddo#3 said, “We have penguin books and penguin movies. Do we have any penguin songs?”
I said, “No.”
And then I heard what was on the radio. “Somebody To Love.”
I’ve described before how sometimes it feels as if I’m hearing angelic laughter. Yeah, that was definitely it, right there. At my expense. Thank you very much. Thanks a lot.
I listened all the way through. Why not? It’s still a good song.