Friday, March 8, 2019

A dodo with pedals

From time to time I suddenly remember the dodo with pedals, a weirdly vivid memory dating back to a time from which few memories survive.

I can't be sure how old I was at the time, but I was living in New Hampshire and had not yet started kindergarten, so somewhere in the two-to-four range. My little sister and I were drawing pictures in crayon to send to "Auntie Lane" (whose proper name, I was later to find out, was actually Aunt Elaine).

"What should we draw next, Chris?"

"I don't know."

A sudden inspiration: "Let's draw a dodo with pedals!"

"Okay! That's a pretty good idea."

So I drew just that: a dodo bird with a pair of bicycle pedals instead of legs. Somehow I had gotten the idea that a dodo's beak pretty much looked like the mouth of a trumpet, flaring out and ending in a big circular opening. All my information about dodos came from a picture book based on Disney's Alice in Wonderland cartoon, and dodos were also connected in my mind with a picture I had seen of Donald Duck somehow puckering his beak to blow out a candle. (I always said "beak," never "bill," even referring to hadrosaurs as "duck-beaked dinosaurs.")

(Looking up the Disney dodo now, I see that, yes, the dark bit at the end of its beak could easily be mistaken for an opening. It also has a normal mouth underneath its apparent trumpet-mouth, but I'm pretty sure my drawing had a trumpet only, with no articulated jaw.)

Looking over at Chris's picture, I saw that she had completely misunderstood my idea and had drawn her dodo with petals. Girls!

They are the Eggmen

In connection with my recent posts about Eleanor Cameron's Mushroom Planet  novels, both Wandering Gondola and William Wright have drawn...