Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Sammy the Seal Says "Fuck My Life" - My Childhood in Shambles

At work today, while we were waiting for some of the other kids to finish their art projects, a group of three of my campers asked me to read them a book. I instructed them to choose one from the shelves and was quite pleased to seem them bring me a book that I enjoyed a great deal as a child and have not read since.

Some of you may be familiar with/remember the charming little children's book by Syd Hoff called Sammy the Seal. This book is about a seal at the zoo who decides that he would like to take a day off from being at the Zoo to check out the city.

During the course of this book, Sammy the Seal talks to the zoo keeper, asking PERMISSION to leave the zoo as opposed to all of the OTHER children's books where the animal escapes, hangs out down town, is asked for directions by a man in a car, goes to school, takes a taxi cab, sneaks into someone's bathtub and absolutely no one seems to care (except for the bathtub guy, because he wanted to take his bath and the seal interrupted.)

In fact, the only part of this book that seems to be rooted in ANY reality is that when Sammy goes into the school, the children are playing with those nifty letter blocks things - you know what I'm talking about.

Sammy becomes IMMEDIATELY distraught because he doesn't know how to spell! OH MY GOD! SEALS CAN'T SPELL! WHO KNEW?! NOT ME! Anyways, after he angsts for about...a page over not being able to use the blocks to spell simple words like 'cat' and 'toy,' he manages to arrange some of the blocks. They read FML.

Naturally, if I were a seal who was in a school, I would arrange the blocks to read Fuck My Life as well, but since the poor bastard couldn't spell, I suppose FML would have to do, but to see my childhood hero, Sammy the talking, volley ball playing, cab riding seal, declare FUCK MY LIFE, I feel that I no longer have reason to believe in anything. Thanks, Sammy, for abusing my childhood.

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