Here is another moment where past meets present. When I was a junior in college, I did this fantastic internship at Scholastic. It was a wonderful program where we were paired with editors interested in educating us. I still remember fouling up a message from Felicia Boyd, the author of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie… she was someone my boss was trying desperately to get in touch with. When she called, I said “she’s not here right now” and hung up. I’m sure my boss wanted to kill me. I’m pretty sure I heard her scream “shit” in her office. But she was such a nice person, she did not yell or treat me poorly from this incident. (The longer I work, the more I see how rare that kind of behavior is, when employees are abused for far less offensive behavior, e.g. breathing). She also was a major baker. When one of her books came out, she celebrated with major snackage – like champagne and brownies with chunks of almond paste. And now that I think back on her work, she had a sociopolitical agenda or sensitivity that I only appreciated years later. She reissued a newer, more kind-to-Asians picture book of The Five Chinese Brothers, and did a bunch of books where there were lots of kids of different races. You know, stuff I like and think about now. At the end of the summer, she gave me a book, not published by Scholastic, because she thinks it’s cheesy to give away books you can get for free, called Stellaluna, a picture book about a fruit bat who gets separated from his mother.

First Son has recently taken to reading the book and we found this video of it being read by a SAG actor (you know, lots of vocal training, majorly mellifluous tone, and all that). I was worried he would get upset at the mother bat getting attacked and the baby bat having to fend for itself – but OH NO, he is way too wrapped up in the drama to worry about that. I’m the one who gets choked up when they reunite. He’s just pumped to yell out the dramatic points the actor punches with vocal gymnastics.

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