Dolphins & Whales, Hurray!

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So the kiddo brought home a reading assignment for her “advanced literature” section.  She’s in second grade, right?  I didn’t even have “advanced literature” until high school.  Periodically the kids bring home particular books to read to us “with expression” and to point out “text features” and learn words like “rorquals” and “cetacean” and “hydrophone” and such.  Meh, I got this.

Today’s book was titled, “Whales.”  Shiiiit, negro.  Cute whales and dolphins and such.  I can do this standing on my head.  Look at the pretty little whale swimming around the ocean; smiling.  Isn’t that cute?  Ohhhh, dolphins.  They do tricks!

Naw, son.  This book was the shit.  Had it been about pilgrims or Columbus, I’d be all explaining (and lying) about Smallpox Blankets.  I’m just glad it wasn’t about slavery else I’d be talking about Negro Dialect and whippings and lynching and rape.  I’d have to explain how MLK got aced by an angry white man because he was black.  Oy vey!

Swimming and breathing and body features was cake.  Baleen?  Easy.  Echo-location?  Yawn.  But then came the later chapters…Reproduction, Migration, Hunting, and Protection.  Thanks a lot second grade curriculum jerks.

Today’s Ace Daddy Homies Homework Q&A by Ty Hardaway

Q: [Reproduction chapter] What’s that red stuff?

A: It’s blood.

Q: Why is there blood?

A: Well, when a baby mammal is born, there are a number of fluids involved.  The bubble the baby lives in the mom’s abdomen is called the amniotic sac.  When the baby is born this pops like and lots of fluids, including a little bit of blood, comes out.

Q: What do you mean “pop” like a balloon?

A: Not “pops” but…opens.  OK?

Q: How much blood?

A: I don’t know, I’ve never seen a whale give birth; a little.

Q: How much blood was there when I was born?

A: Very little.

Q: Who was bleeding?  Mommy or me?

A: Uhhh.  Just some blood was…in the process like I said.  There was…this is about whales!

FAIL!

Q: [Nursing chapter] Where does the calf get the milk?

A: All mammals provide milk from breasts.

Q: Like mom’s boobs?

A: Yes, exactly.

Q: How does a whale drink milk under water?

A: Says here that it can’t suckle so it nuzzles for milk.

Q: Suckles?

A: Yes.  To suck.  Mammals–land mammals anyway–suck milk.

Q: Sucks from boobs?

A: Yes. Kind of like that.

Q: Why can’t the whale suckle?

A: Whales have no lips.

Q: So how do the babies get the milk?

A: The babies “nuzzle”–or rub the mom–and the mom squirts it to them.

Q: Cool!  Can mom squirt milk like that?!

A: Uh, no.  Not really.  I mean, should could squirt it a little bit, but not to feed you.

Q: What do you mean?

A: —–

Q: Can we call her at work?

A: —–

FAIL!

Q: [Hunting chapter] What does “whaling” mean?

A: It means to hunt whales.

Q: PEOPLE KILL WHALES?

A: Yes, whales are very useful for food and industry.

Q: But whales are smart, right?

A: Yes, but some people need to eat whale meat, like we eat chickens and cows.

Q: What’s fuel oil?

A: Well, people used to use the blubber to burn lamps.

Q: What?  They burn the whales?

A: Well, kind of–

Q: What are cosmetics?

A: Like make-up and lipstick and stuff.

Q: Made from dead whales?

A: Uh, yeah.  Like I said, some products–It’s like elephants and…never mind.

Q: What about elephants?

A: Nothing.

Q: Pet food?

A: It says that there?

Q: How do they catch the whales?

A: In boats.

Q: How do they get them?

A: What does the book say?

Q: It doesn’t.

A: They catch them in…BIG NETS!  And put them in tanks!

FAIL!

Q: [Protection chapter] What does “extinction” mean?

A: All gone, like dinosaurs.

Q: What happen to the dinosaurs.

A: Long story.  I’ll tell you after we talk about whales.

Q: Are people killing all the whales?

A: Lots of them.

Q: What does “slaughter” mean?

A: To kill a lot.

Q: So we slaughter to extinction?

A: Yes, unfortunately, in some cases.

Q: What else do humans slaughter?

A: —–

FAIL!


I totally suck.  But at least the book saves the day.  Here’s how it ends:

“These days, we do not need whale oil; we use other oils.  We do not need whalebone; we use plastics.  And whale meat is eaten in very few countries.  So we do not need to continue to kill whales.  Whales should be protected by all countries so that no species becomes extinct.”

Thank god for petroleum!  And all those whaling treaties, right Japan?

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3 Responses to “Dolphins & Whales, Hurray!”

  1. Elizabeth Says:

    Dinosaurs went extinct from smoking. Doy!

  2. Land of Misfit Toys in the Attic « Mydadhomies Says:

    […] Books (doy) […]

  3. Kevin Rocha Says:

    Thanks for sharing

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