Like my wife’s sudden predilection for sketching SpongeBob SquarePants. It began on the flight to L.A., when Jean, stuck watching Nickelodeon on her seat-back screen, discovered the strange yellow kitchen cleanser. Not for the first time, really, but this prolonged close contact had a funny effect. Soon she began to draw quick versions of SpongeBob, usually on Sasha’s magna-doodle-esque sketchpad. Sometimes the nose was wrong, sometimes the expression—ah, but who am I kidding? Jean’s drawings were much closer to the real thing than I could ever achieve.
The truly odd thing is that Jean kept drawing SpongeBob, even when Sasha was no longer her audience. She’d be sitting there with a piece of paper at her side, and boom! The next minute there’d be a goofily grinning Porifera on the page. WTF?
Exhibit 2: Sasha, as I’ve said many times before, is a big fan of the TV show “Yo Gabba Gabba!” Well, one of the segments she loves features a cartoon character named Super Martian Robot Girl, a green-haired savior of people in trouble. Why’s no one dancing at your dance party? Ah, notices SMRG, there’s no music!
Anyway, throughout the Christmas season, Jean and I began to notice something odd. Whenever we were in a store that had a big nutcracker figurine—you know, gaping jaw, red suit, the whole works—Sasha would point to it and say, “Super Martian Robot Girl!” Now, the kid has good eyes. She can spot a fading contrail at 30,000 feet and follow it to a microscopic Bombardier. She can I.D. a picture of a snowman hanging outside a bodega as we zip past it on Sunset Boulevard.
But the Nutcracker and Super Martian Robot Girl look nothing alike! Check them out:
Now, I ask you, WTF? Can anyone explain these things to me?