And now for something

completely different.  You’re welcome!

This is our new favorite show:  Pingu.  Love the claymation, love the emotive language (especially the way the penguin midwife talks, that combination of meditative and matter-of-fact — why does it crack me up?  And she carries a stethoscope and a SPOON in her bag!).  Fairly sure Pingu (the big brother) is one of my sons.

Ahh, nothing like anthromorphic penguins to soothe the soul after a long, hard week of arguing about pants.  Truly, we are living in a golden age.



  1. We LOVE Pingu!!! Partially because it’s the only way to keep the 18-month old off me while I get stuff done (oops, did I say that?), but because it’s genuinely entertaining!!!

    Ian keeps wondering “that’s all you have to do is tap an egg with a spoon?”

    I love the episode where Pinga and Pingu are driving their Mom nuts and later they go out to the living room and find her asleep on the couch and an empty wine glass spilling the last drops of wine on the floor.

  2. Neflix, instant play. It’s been on lots of times in our house but I haven’t seen it yet because that’s how I get my shower.

  3. Well, I for one appreciated the pants posts. Sometimes, I feel badly for not wearing skirts, but I can’t reconcile skirts with practical matters like shoveling cow poop and reading stories on the floor. Also, I do not think I would like them when I’m in the barn on a beautiful balmy six degree morning.

    Thank you for standing up for pants-wearing women everywhere.

  4. Pingu is the sort of thing that makes me wish my kiddos were still single-digit-aged.

    Not that that will stop me from watching. Of course not. It will just keep me from having company when I do.

    P.S. So relieved that none of the penguins are wearing pants.

  5. Just “discovered” your blog and have been laughing hysterically catching up on your posts. So pleased to find another NH Catholic Mom with the same sense of humor. Thanks for writing. BTW: that paragraph in the “Looking Catholic” article, about your kids taking FOREVER to get out of the van is priceless. I keep re-reading it and laughing. WHY do they DO that? Anyway, great stuff!

  6. Ah, Pingu. My youngest is now 14 years old (which is really odd considering that I’m sure I only gave birth 14 MONTHS ago!), so Pingu is no longer part of our regular viewing, but I do miss him. So sweet. I never saw this episode, so thank you for sharing.

  7. We are huge Pingu fans too! Funny and sweet.

    The kids are also into Phineas and Ferb right now. It’s a pretty clever show as well. Anything that I can watch with the kids more than once and still find it at least mildly entertaining is a winner in my book.

  8. [this post has been suppressed by the admin, because it’s my damn blog]

    You know what, Martha, I’m just not in the mood today. Yesterday was the day to get all worked up over trivial things. Say what you want about my immortal soul, but HANDS OFF PINGU.

    • Martha,
      You’d have to watch a few episodes to appreciate it I think, but I have to defend the little penguin.

      The characters are generally very kind and good to each other (rare in an age when most characters are just obnoxious or banal). There is even an episode in which Pingu goes to an elderly shut in and fixes up his igloo by patching the holes in it, and then feeds, and cares for the character. It is very touching.

      As far as the babble is concerned, the reason for that is that the show was intended to have an appeal in other than it’s country of origin, so they developed it without a specific language so the stories would carry over without translation.

      Besides, words are not always necessary, and sometimes stories without them can be very well done.

      My kids and I just watched Buster Keaton’s General last night and they were enthralled by it (they gave it 5 out of 5 stars), despite the fact it was as silent film. The lack of speech shouldn’t always be a deal killer.

      Bottom line, I can’t stand Caillou, Dora, or Teletubbies either, but I heartily endorse Pingu! Lumping Pingue in with that stuff is just not right.

      And besides…Pants!

    • Simcha,
      Is there any way to contact you via the blog? I don’t see an email link anywhere, but maybe I am missing it.

      If not, if you don’t object, could you possibly email me?

      • I admit, I’ve wondered a couple times, too, if there was some way to contact you. After the two pants posts, I can see why you might not want everyone who takes a look at your blog to have your email address. 🙂 But if it’s a deliberate policy, I recommend saying so in your FAQs. You could even link to the pants post(s), just to make it really clear what kind of emails you are trying to avoid having flooding into your inbox.

  9. I discovered Pingu in Zurich at the local grocery store…he was on cereal boxes, comic books, flip-flops, t-shirst, as well as TV. I fell in love instantly (also nice because I didn’t need to understand French or German to watch). When we got home I found cheap DVD’s in a dollar bin at Wal-Mart and the whole family loves him. I haven’t seen Pingu in several years so thanks for sharing him with all of us.

  10. We too have always gotten a kick out of Pingu. We live overseas and it is one of the few kid shows that doesn’t have to be dubbed by the same three people trying to make all the different voices for all the different shows! And it was nice in the beginning to have one show where I didn’t have to wonder what was going on! I had nothing original to add to the pants topic but your blog is consistently a silly sane spot in my day. I will look up the thing about the kids getting out of the van slowly. Sounds strangely familiar! Keep it up, Simcha!

  11. I throughly enjoyed reading about the pants! I think that argument actually brings up a topic about the term “universal”.

    One of the stories our Priest told while we were going through RCIA last year was about a friend’s conversion experience. You see, his friend was traveling on business to New York City. While he was there he decided to take in some of the tourist sites, with St. Peter’s being one of them. While attending Mass that day, he happened to sit by two very different people. One was clearly a very wealthy Wall Street type wearing a very expensive suit. The other one was on the other end of the socio-economic ladder as he wearing his construction worker uniform. It was clear that both men had taken off during their lunch times to attend daily Mass. When the Mass got to the part of exchanging the sign of the peace, he was amazed to see these two men exchange a warm handshake. He decided right then and there that if this was the God that the Catholic church believed in, he wanted to know more about it. Thus, began his journey towards a radical conversion. Our priest used this story to illustrate how one never knows when they might be a witness to someone who is in unbelief. However, it light of the last two days of discussion, what would have happened if the man in the business suit had turned around and deemed the man in his construction clothes unworthy of being at Mass? Would the unbeliever watching this exchange had the same desire to learn more about that God? I think not.

    One of the beautiful things that I enjoy about attending daily Mass at the “Universal” church is that there are all types of people from all walks of life. You have the nurse there on her lunch break in her nurses uniform, the construction worker, the business man in his suit, the Walmart employee in his/her uniform, the mother, the grandmother, the retired couple, the college student, etc. If when I was looking into the Catholic church last year I had found out that skirts were required, I would have stopped looking. I can get that kind of legalism at the corner Pentecostal church. It just seems to me like a sad state of affairs.

    Oh and by the way, one of the most holiest woman that I know wears pants. And quite honestly, I’ve never given it much thought. I was to busy noticing the love of Jesus radiating from her face.

    • Pingu looks fun!! I can’t wait to show my kids after school 🙂

      Also, don’t want to start the whole pants thing again. I’ve just been thinking about it a lot these last few days and couldn’t get that story our Priest told out of my head.

    • “Oh and by the way, one of the most holiest woman that I know wears pants. And quite honestly, I’ve never given it much thought. I was to busy noticing the love of Jesus radiating from her face.”

      Oh, binGO.

      Your comment brings up some good words from St. Peter, actually:

      “Your adornment should not be an external one: braiding the hair, wearing gold jewelry, or dressing in fine clothes, but rather the hidden character of the heart, expressed in the imperishable beauty of a gentle and calm disposition, which is precious in the sight of God.” (1 Peter 3:3)

  12. Pingu is charming and entertaining both – thanks for sharing!

    As far as that “A Fan Speaks” quote at the top of this page: what a load of judgmental baloney. I am glad there are so many different voices in the One Universal Church – Here Comes Everybody, indeed. With so many things we should be united on, it’s the devil’s work to look for petty ways to divide based on opinion, not Church teaching.

  13. Simcha, thanks for introducing us to Pingu! So cute. I love claymation. Watched it with my 6 yr old daughter and 3yr old son this morning. We enjoyed it a lot. This actually made me remember watching “A Grand Day Out” (Wallace and Gromit) with my son about a year ago before he was talking much. He liked it (I theorize) because it wasn’t too language heavy–but there was lots of motion and facial expressions.

  14. Ooooh fun! I’m sure my 5 and 3 year old will love. I assume it’s all safe for them to watch? Though I do trust your stamp of approval. But for young kids, though?

    • Lauren, I don’t blame you for asking – I do have vulgar tastes sometimes. Pingu is fine (delightful, IMO) for 3-5 year olds. There is the occasional bodily function joke (in one, the kids are in the bath, and a bubble suddenly surfaces, and the older brother jumps out in horror) – but in my opinion, it’s not gratuitous, but just what is normal in family life.

  15. Oh, Pingu! We love that show here. My five year old was obsessed with this show when she was a toddler, and she actually walked just like Pingu, with that shuffling gait and her shoulders hunched up. Watching it now actually makes me emotional, because it reminds me so strongly of when she was little. Then again, I’m 9 months pregnant so just about anything can make me emotional.

  16. PINGU!!

    Love Pingu. The episode with Pinga’s birth is hysterical. The episode with the old penguin playing the…whatever it is? Calliope? Something like that? …where Pingu gets him food and repairs his house? Sweet and adorable.

    Pingu sends the kiddos into giggle-fits. Love.

  17. Pingu used to be our toddler’s obsession. Now he is all about Shaun the Sheep (by the same folks who do Wallace and Grommit).

    Love the blog! Followed it off of Mark Shea’s blog, and then figured out that you are my husband’s sister in law…small internet world!

    • Well hi! Damien and I just sat there for ten minutes saying “Husband’s sister-in-law . . . MY husband’s . . . SISTER-in -law . . .” for several minutes, like it was a riddle. So you’re married to one of Bill’s brother’s, yes?

      We like Shaun the Sheep, too. Do you think it’s a pun, like “Shorn the Sheep, ” or am I thinking about it too hard?

      • Yep, married to his brother John. I’ll facebook friend you so it’s official. No one is *really* related in any way unless it is confirmed by Facebook, after all.

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