Oh crap, that's no elephant...

by Andrea Mulder-Slater

We are moving soon and so, the cleanup has begun. As I was sorting through some of my daughter's toys yesterday, I came across one I had forgotten about. It was covered in dust bunnies - after having lived under the bed for quite some time - but it still looked perky as ever...

Geoff, Jan, the littlest one and I were at a train station somewhere in The Netherlands, waiting for the next ride to Assen, where we were heading to visit the house where my father spent his early childhood. My daughter wasn't yet two years old and this was to be the first train ride of her life (well, the second - if you count the trip from the airport to our rental home - but that was after an eight hour red eye flight and at that point, she thought we were all sitting on a fast moving sofa).

For our daylong excursion, we had snacks, stickers and paper, her “baby” and her “lowdee.”  Still, to help keep my little girl occupied, I thought I might grab a little something from a bookstore located near the platform. With only a few minutes (and Euros) to spend, I scanned the shop until I found the kid's section. There were plenty of books to choose from but one in particular caught my eye – mostly because it came with a tiny stuffed elephant.

At least, I thought it was an elephant. It was early. I was tired. It was sealed in plastic.

Once on the train, I unwrapped the surprise. 

Geoff: Um, what is that?

Me: It’s an elephant. What?

Geoff: That’s no elephant. 

Me: Well what is it then?

Geoff: I don't know what it is.

Jan: It looks like it has poop on its head.

Geoff: You bought a toy with poop on its head. You bought a poopyhead!

Me: No, it's a hat. It's an elephant - wearing a hat. Look - the book will explain it.

Jan: Over een kleine mol die wil weten wie er op zijn kop gepoept heft

Geoff and Me: Okay, what?
Jan: I’m just reading the title. This book is about a mole that wants to know who pooped on his head.

The toddlerPoopyhead! Poopyhead! Poopyhead!

It was love at first sight. Good job Geoff had gone with the second - and not the first - words that entered his brain that day. We were this close to traveling with an only child and her new best friend, "Shithead".

See - it's an elephant with a hat. Clearly.
Here's the thing. I understand a handful of Dutch words  - when spoken - at the best of times. I can speak even fewer phrases - all of which contain expletives. And clearly I should not be left to my own devices when purchasing children's books in a Dutch bookstore. In the morning. Before coffee. 

After further inspection, I had to admit that yes - it did look like a mole, with a hat made of poop.

Of course I see it now but at the time... like I said, it was early.
The next question was - what kind of effed up book was this??? We begged Jan to translate for us. My child was delighted.

As it turned out, there once was a mole who, while happily emerging from his sleeping place, felt something drop on his head.

He then sets out to find out who the Hell crapped on him. Each animal he accuses, pleads innocence. And then they all proceed to take a dump in front of him  - presumably to prove they didn't do it. Personally, I think they were just screwing with poor old poopyhead. Read... and learn.

It wasn't the bird. Splat.

Nor the horse. Obviously.

It was not the happy-go-lucky (and significantly satisfied) rabbit.

And, it wasn't the goat. Don't worry, I'm almost done. Unlike Billy here.

The cow rested his case.

As did the pig.

Frustrated, poopyhead consulted with the shit experts until...

After some research, the culprit was named.

Of course it was the dog. Those buggers are always backing the big brown caddy out of the garage. Nevermind... in the end, poopyhead got his revenge - which kind of begs the question: What is the moral of this story? How about this one... Not a turd shall fall on my head without another, much smaller turd, falling on yours. Yeah. I like that.

Now, I know what you're thinking. You just lost five minutes you'll never get back. But what a five minutes it was. And now that it's over - aren't you relieved? 

Thought so.

No, really.

By the way, you too can own the story of poopyhead - in English even. Go ahead, you know you want it. http://www.amazon.com/Story-Little-Mole-Knew-Business/dp/1843650959/

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