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Bedtime stories gone awry (really weird children’s books)

January 11, 2010

I can still remember my favorite books that I read when I was a child.  Cars and Trucks and Things That Go was my all time favorite.  Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs, Encyclopedia Brown, and Where the Sidewalk Ends were right up there as well. It’s a different generation now.  It seems to me that people want kids to grow up a lot faster than before.  Some of the children’s books out there now are downright weird.  I personally believe that a lot of these subjects should be taught through life experience and not necessarily in a book, but whatever.  I’m not technically licensed to practice psychology, so it doesn’t matter.

 

I Wish Daddy Didn’t Drink So Much

Price: $6.99

I guess alcoholism is worse than I thought in this country.  I don’t know how many books a publisher has to sell to break even, but it has to be quite a few.  Here’s the thing though: isn’t the hardest thing for an alcoholic to do is admit that they’re an alcoholic?  If that’s the case, they wouldn’t buy this book because they would be saying “I don’t have a problem”.  I would think that this would need to come in a package with a book about how to tell if you’re an alcoholic.  Anyways, this book does have some interesting lines in it.  Like this one:

“For Christmas, Daddy made me a sled. He brought it to my room on Christmas Eve. I knew it was only Daddy in a Santa Suit because he bumped into my bed twice and spilled beer on the rug.”

  Dumb Daddy!  If he’s going to walk around spilling on rugs, he needs to switch to vodka so that there is no odor. 

 

The House That Crack Built

Price: $6.95

I remember reading The House That Jack Built.  I loved it. This book takes that same rhyming style and turns it into a ghetto-fabulous tale of the dangers of crack, from start to finish.  It begins with the exploited South American workers in the coca fields and goes all the way to the streets of the inner city.

“This is the street of a town in pain, this is the girl who is killing her brain”

I know, crack puts towns in pain and kills brains, but it builds houses like this:

If this book teaches anything, it’s that selling crack can buy you a sweet mansion. 

 

Who Cares About Disabled People?

Price: $26.25 (WTF? It’s only 32 pages long!)

This is part of a Who Cares…? series.  It basically is supposed to teach kids to love and care about everyone.  Another book in this series is Who Cares About Elderly People?  It was difficult to choose which wonderful life lesson to include here, as their titles are both equally head-scratching.  I chose disabled people mostly for the reason of who they decide to include as examples.

So am I to believe that Kobe Bryant (athlete), David Hasselhoff (boozer), and Kevin Federline (fat kid) are all disabled?  OK, I’ll give you Hasselhoff and Federline, but not Kobe.   And what is the huffer in the this picture huffing?  It looks like a bag of bubble gum. 

 

Does God Love Michael’s Two Daddies?

Price: $7.95

 Leave it to the homophobic right to decide whether Michael’s two daddies are going to heaven.  In the book, Seth and Sarah are twins in a perfect, heterosexual, white Christian family.  The poor kid next door (Michael) is the son of two unstable, interracial gay men.  This book is awful in it’s attempt to veil the whole good vs. evil thing.  It basically says that God loves everyone except the gays, that gay marriages aren’t real, and they’re all going to hell.  One of the last lines says:

“Won’t it be wonderful when you two can read the words of the Bible for yourselves?”

And won’t it also be wonderful when they can think for themselves, too?  Of course, this book was published by Apologetics Press, who make their living publishing we’re-right-and-you’re-not stuff like this.  Oh, did I mention their former God-fearing, perfect director of 26 years was canned for “improper relations with young boys”?  That’s right, he was gay and a child molester.  Nothing  like a little hypocrisy to go with your extreme religious views.  If you’re going to talk the talk you better walk the walk.  Just saying…

 

It’s Just a Plant

Price: $20.00

How early is too early for marijuana education?  According to the publishers here, it’s 3 to 5 years old.  This book is about a young girl who wakes up late one night and walks in on her parents smoking a doobie.  I guess that’s better that her walking in while they are trying to make her a little brother, but this book goes through what they say to her to explain what it is they’re doing.

The story then shows the mother and daughter riding their bikes to see the marijuana farmer, and then to a doctor who explains that some adults use the drug (but that children absolutely should not). When they pass some stores and the child recognizes the now-familiar sweet smell, she sees a group of African-American men smoking.  Implausibly, they stop and explain some details about marijuana. (And they didn’t offer the girl any.  How rude!)  Even more implausible, the potheads hold still when the police arrive. To top off the implausibilities is the officer who explains why the drug is illegal then lets the young men go with a simple warning.  This book may tell the truth about the plant, but it blatantly lies about the repercussions.

 

Alfie’s Home

Price: $52.75 (Must be a collector’s item now as only used copies are available)

This one is just plain awful.  Basically, it’s about a young boy whose parents fight all the time while ignoring him, an uncle that molests him, and when he becomes a teen the kids at school that call him “faggot” and “sissy”.  The children that need to read this book will never see it because their parents don’t care and their uncles care too much.

Don’t worry, everything turns out perfect.  You see, this book also teaches us that a single trip to the therapist fixes everything.  Alfie went once, and now his parents are fine now and he is totally convinced he’s not gay.  Oh, and his uncle apologized while crying, so all is forgiven there and the situation will never again affect his mental well-being. Ever.

 

Woher die Kinder kommen aus (where babies come from)

Price: Unknown

The Germans must really love sex and where babies come from.  I kind of had to make up the name for this book, as there was no picture of the cover anywhere.  All I could find was images of the pages, which is good enough.  The pages are where the real magic is, because this is a children’s book that shows sexual penetration as well as this:

Yikes!  This picture is equal parts disturbing and hilarious.  This view should only be seen by a doctor, but the baby seems really happy to finally be out of there.  And this isn’t even the most disturbing/hilarious picture in this book.  It’s probably the first publication aimed at toddlers I’ve ever seen that has both male and female full frontal nudity on multiple pages.  If you want to see the whole book, check it out here.

I’m curious to see what other subjects get tackled in future books for children.  It’s only a matter of time before there is one called Mommy, Why Do We Live With Grandma Now?  or I Used to Have My Own Room.  I think I’ll write some about what I think is the biggest problems with America today.  I’ll call them You Don’t Need Talent to be Famous, You Just Have To Make a Sex Tape and, for the parents out there, No! You Can’t Have That.  Keep an eye out for those.  In the meantime, just remember that crack builds awesome houses.  It might be worth looking into.

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43 Comments leave one →
  1. Steve Pordon permalink
    January 11, 2010 3:27 pm

    Congratulations on barely changing the original article: http://www.cracked.com/blog/10-great-childrens-books-for-people-who-hate-their-children

    • January 11, 2010 3:52 pm

      I’ll happily admit I used this article as a source, but I don’t think the words “barely changed” are relevant. I couldn’t find reviews for a lot of these books and had to go off what I could find. Several of the books I covered weren’t even in the Cracked article. Give it a rest and enjoy it for what it is. Geeesh! So picky.

    • Candice permalink
      January 16, 2010 6:18 pm

      4 of 10 books being the same with different commentary by the blogger is hardly “barely changing the original…”

  2. Jorg Willekens permalink
    January 11, 2010 3:42 pm

    About “Woher die Kinder kommen aus (where babies come from)”. You really fail to understand cultural context of this. In Europe (Germany in this instance), sexuality is this context is really not frowned upon. I know first hand that preschool children do get this information.

    Just Saying

    J.

    • January 11, 2010 3:44 pm

      Noted. I don’t think I really failed to realize the cultural context as I didn’t really take it into consideration. I know different countries look and sex and reproduction differently, but my commentary is reflective of the society I was raised in. There was no offense intended.

  3. Howie13 permalink
    January 11, 2010 7:23 pm

    Christian, possibly you should refund all the money Steve Pordon spent to see this post or possibly forward it to cracked.com. Or just maybe… Steve should quit trolling every timewaster, I mean entertainment, site he can find in the hopes of finding fault and making snide remarks.

  4. January 12, 2010 5:09 am

    love those ads that pop up just by moving the cursor down the screen, making it impossible to read the text. really enhances the old user experience, know what i mean?

    • Able Stanton permalink
      January 12, 2010 10:03 am

      I was going to point out the same thing. Maybe they can be configured to wait before popping up or to pop up when the cursor is actually ON the targets, rather than simply NEAR them.

    • January 12, 2010 11:10 am

      I apologize for that. I assume you are talking about the pop up that occurs when you roll over a link. I didn’t know that was turned on and it doesn’t do it for me when I’m logged in so I had no idea. I think it is fixed now. If not, somebody please go to the contact page and let me know. Thanks.

  5. January 12, 2010 5:11 am

    This book is old. It was published in Denmark no later than the early 1980s, because I remember I read it when I was growing up.
    It is funny that this book can offend anybody – it shows the human reproduction in a very straight forward manner. Yes it shows a penis and a vagina, but that is how kids are made. The way I see it showing it like this just helps to remove any taboos.

  6. January 12, 2010 6:34 am

    I had “Struwel Pieter”. Ghastly damage to a child.

  7. Skysurfer permalink
    January 12, 2010 6:54 am

    My parents gave my brother and I a copy of the last one “Woher die Kinder kommen aus” when we were kids ( I Must have been about 5).

    It was translated into English but who could read the words when the pictures spoke such volumes? In fairness though, I did learn the basics of the mechanics thanks to those…

    The book eventually got taken away because my mother caught us laughing at the sex scenes, such immature behaviour… oh… wait…

  8. Jane_ permalink
    January 12, 2010 8:54 am

    I just wanted to say that it if you don’t know the real name, the correct translation would be only “Woher die Kinder kommen” =).

    And as a German, I can say that this view of sexuality is really common. I saw a similar book when I was about 6 years old, and I did learn about it in elementary school as well.

    I think there should be children’s books about unususal topics. The sad thing about the ones mentionend above is just that they’re not completely neutral.

  9. Able Stanton permalink
    January 12, 2010 10:06 am

    When my daughter was in Kindergarten, she got invited to a classmate’s birthday party which was held at the battered womens’ shelter where this classmate and her mother lived. My daughter thought the building and living arrangements were awesome and insisted on calling it a “hotel.”

    “Daddy, why does Erica live in a hotel?”

  10. January 13, 2010 2:40 am

    This is diffidently not what I want my kids to see/learn at such a young age. It will rob them of their youth.

  11. tony permalink
    January 13, 2010 3:19 pm

    Dude, you struck gold with this post–17 responses so far!
    Like Daid Hasselhoff, you’re huge in Germany.

    FYI, when I was a pothead, I was let off about a half-dozen times, versus the 0 that I was punished.

    The more you know…

  12. January 14, 2010 11:49 am

    This is absolutely hysterical…now granted, I am not blessed yet with kids of my own; however, if I was, I would buy each one of these in a heartbeat, grab a glass of wine with the wifey and have a blast reading this stuff all night long!

    Dude, I wish my Daddy didn’t drink so much? That is by far the most hillarious thing I’ve ever heard…was the preface – “well, I’m a snot nosed cry baby that my parents haven’t been proud of one day in their lives.” That’s the cause for Daddy’s woes kid, give it a break.

  13. Mary permalink
    January 15, 2010 7:47 am

    I laughed so hard I had tears streaming down my face. This is the funniest thing I’ve read in a very long time.

  14. Lisa permalink
    January 15, 2010 8:35 am

    I’m sorry…but I am somewhat confused by this post.

    Children deal everyday with issues like, loss, family dysfunction, even the substance issues of their parents—and a book can help a child feel less isolated—less like they are the only one with the world with the same issue.

    It would be lovely if a child never had to cope with grief, or sadness, but that’s not what happens. These books are made to help the very young feel better about things that they can’t change. If you are lucky, your child will never need to read them…but they are better for existing.

    So far as “Where Babies Come From”…PLEASE. Our media is awash with blatant sexual imagery, yet our children still don’t seem to grasp the connection between sex, and pregnancy. I believe children who have information will make better life choices than those who are “sheltered” to the point of personal incompetence.

  15. January 16, 2010 2:54 pm

    That German one might come in handy to scare my daughter into keeping her legs closed. Plus it looks hilarious!

  16. John permalink
    January 17, 2010 3:11 pm

    You have sensitivos and sensitivas coming out of the woodwork!

  17. January 26, 2010 12:27 pm

    great blog, full of informative information..

  18. January 29, 2010 9:19 am

    Nice post! GA is also my biggest earning. However, its not a much.

  19. taotu permalink
    April 26, 2010 10:02 pm

    I live in Vancouver and I have never seen or heard of anybody ever being arrested for smoking a joint. Hell, at midnight releases at the local theatre it’s common to see the majority of people in line either smoking up or rolling joints for their friends.

    The police quite often drive by and see this activity, but they don’t give a damn. They don’t even bother with warnings.

    Let’s face it. They have more important things to do than stop one person from getting high.

  20. August 11, 2010 8:53 pm

    WOW, as an illustrator/painter, I am offended on so many levels. LOL

    Great post, these images and stories are just so wrong, but it’s still pretty funny…

  21. October 29, 2010 5:05 pm

    Maybe you should make changes to the blog subject Bedtime stories gone awry (really weird children’s books) A Whole Lot of Nothing to more specific for your content you write. I loved the blog post however.

  22. David Olavsrud Gundersen permalink
    December 1, 2010 4:22 pm

    I liked it. It made me laugh!

  23. Joaquin Orte permalink
    February 3, 2011 10:48 am

    My friend and that i are already just debating this very topic, he’s usually seeking to prove me wrong. Your scene on this is perfect and just how I actually feel. I recently now e mailed my buddy this web site to show him your own perspective.

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  26. April 24, 2013 12:06 am

    This is so strangely amazing. Half the time I was laughing out loud the other half I was banging my head against the table at the stupidity. To be honest at first I thought this was some sort of spoof when I first saw it, now my faith in humanity’s sanity is really shaken.

  27. March 19, 2014 6:56 am

    I quite like reading an article that will make men and women think. Also, thanks for allowing me to comment!

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