Here’s the demo track of Mister Bug recorded today with Andy Rapo. It’s a bit rough, but not bad considering how quickly we did it. Andy is a whiz in the home studio and has a pretty nice set up. That’s me singing and playing ukulele (in case you were wondering).
Mister Bug started out as a poem (trivia – my first rhyming poem) based on a comment from my three-and-half-foot muse about a bug he saw on the ceiling. After some great comments from my crit group, I expanded it to fit a picture book format. Then, last year I started thinking about song writing and this version kind of came together.
I still think it’s got pretty good picture book potential *cough* agents, editors *cough*
I “debuted” it in January at my first VCFA residency by coercing a room full of children’s writers to sing along on the chorus. It didn’t take a whole lot of arm-twisting, they’re a game bunch. Now this version is going out to a local songwriting contest, and I’m living the not-quite-a-Wiggle-dream.
I had a different poem on deck for this week’s Poetry Friday, but then my four year old decided to eat everything for dinner. Seriously, everything. I expect he’ll wake up tomorrow and tell us that his legs hurt again. Good thing it’s almost shorts season.
I’ve had a lot of fun showing off giving out my new card to just about anyone that shows the tiniest bit of interest in what I do. But more than a few folks have asked why the monkey is wearing pants. Well, there’s a funny story that goes with that particular character design, so pull up a chair and set a spell.
A few months ago my three year old son started calling almost all of his stuffed animals “her”, “she” or giving them girl names. Now, I don’t have a problem with that, I’m more Alan Alda than Charlton Heston, and if he wants to explore gender issues with his toys, so be it. But I was curious, so I decided to ask him when the time was right.
Later that week we were going through the bedtime routine; read two stories, one last trip to the potty, back to bed for snuggling (awwww….). He decided he wanted the little elephant that I called Eubie but he insisted was Ellie. Great, thinks I, here’s my chance.
“Isaac, why do you think so many of your stuffed animals are girls?”
He picked up the elephant, turned it around so the back end was facing me and, with the sincerity that only a child can muster said,
“Look, Daddy, no bulbs.”
Yep, Isaac had gleaned that fact the boys have “bulbs” and girls do not (gosh they grow up so fast).
And that’s why the monkey wears pants. No snot nosed kid is going to tell me that Little Mister Monkey is really Little Miss Monkey ’cause he’s got no junk. And I’m not about to start drawing anatomically correct animals for kids. Besides, who wants to do that research? (Never google anything about animal genitals, I beg you).