An unfiltered fire hose of flaming condemnation

Hi, I read

One of the only redeeming parts about air travel these days — other than the ubiquitous barf bag, the lovable bag that says it’s okay to be lazy, that in fact we encourage you to be lazy and instead of politely excusing yourself to go throw up in the bathroom you can just sit there on your fat ass and toss up in this convenient puke receptacle while everyone watches — is the free copy of Sky Mall Magazine you get in the seat pocket.

For those of you who don’t know what Sky Mall is just imagine my pot-bellied neighbor up the street who wears flannel shirts with the arms cut off, how he’s constantly trying to come up with inventions to make his life easier, like what would it take to build an alarm clock that not only wakes you up in the morning but can also simultaneously pour ketchup on a hot dog? How have I survived without this technology? HOW MUCH BETTER WOULD LIFE BE? Sky Mall is a catalog of that man’s ideas.

We’ve got several copies of Sky Mall lying around the house, copies I brought back from recent trips because they’re always good for at least a few minutes of toddler distraction. Yesterday I caught Leta reading the Early Spring 2006 Issue to herself, the one featuring The Portable Pet Staircase, The Remote Control Golf Ball, and my personal favorite, The Personal Alcohol Breath-Screening Device for those moments when your slurred speech and flammable breath aren’t enough of an indication that you shouldn’t be operating machinery.

You’re not going to be able to make out anything she is saying unless you speak Cyborg, but do pay attention because at the end of the video she engages in an activity — and a subsequent look of, “You did not just hear me engage in that activity” — that will make my side of the family very proud (and Jon’s side of the family very mortified).

Leta reads Sky Mall (Flash movie)
Leta reads Sky Mall (Quicktime movie)

  • Well, I was having a pretty great day already, and that just made it better. Now guess who’s going to go wake up her one-year-old and start coaching him on the adorable art of catalog-leafing?

  • OMG You don’t know how much I needed to see this today. Yesterday, I had to put my 13 year old furry son down. Dexter my golden retriever is in a better place and I am heart broken. I need to thank you for sharing this as it is the first thing that made me smile and laugh in the last 36 hours.

    Thank you so much. Leta is precious as always. I have never been so thankful to witness the flatulence escape.

  • angiewis

    Hee hee, I thought I heard “Christmas card” too. I’m pretty sure there was a “Daddy Mama” in there also.

    Definitely much cuteness there. Before long she’ll be like my 2 1/2 year old and just say “I fahted” and cause you and Jon to convulse in laughter like my husband and I do.

  • Hahahaha! I love the way kids deal with bodily emissions. I was at Sonic the other day with two of my coworkers when this little boy sitting with his family at the next table loudly declared, “I farted!” His table ignored the comment; my table erupted in laughter.

    Leta’s quite the lady. She deals with it the way my grandparents do: let it rip and continue as if nothing has happened.

  • Meg

    So cute it should be illegal!
    Okay, I’m melting. I think I want one. A baby, not a Sky Mall catalog.

    Speaking of which, did you see the aqua coffee table? Good stuff.

  • we are trying to teach charlotte to point at whomever is closest when she farts. a family tradition. and whoever said it, yes, farting is ALWAYS funny.

  • RzDrms

    methinks that fart was an indication that she associates reading with pooping (i.e., reading on the toilet). potty training, beware! 😉

  • Lindsey

    I love it!
    My daughter does the reading thing, but totally doesn’t punctuate with burps. I’m gonna have to teach her!

  • interesse

    i think my favorite thing in that kind of magazine is the hair clippings-catcher that you put around someone’s head when cutting their hair. the poor sap whose hair is getting cut looks like a friggin clown or a dog with one of those lampshades from the vet.

  • my personal Sky Mall favorite is the Insect Vacuum:

    for all of us bug-o-phobes it keeps you at a comfortable distance from the inevitable bug massacre. It even comes with an extension so you can nuke a spider from clear across the room.

    I’m going to go beat my ovaries now. They must suppress the urge to procreate.

  • moochisima

    I dont mean to be retarded but I can’t see the movie. I can only hear it (HILARIOUS btw) I have even updated my flash player with the latest version. You Tube worked when you had it up. . . is there any way we can get you tube back? Or even windows media player (“Oh the humanity” you must be saying at this moment!)

  • Man, Leta is going to kill you when she gets older! This is worse than showing naked baby photos to future boyfriends — in that scenario, at least the images don’t have audio, and the audience is only one.

  • Great video! I am no expert, but I can tell from her speech pattern that you guys must read to her a lot. She is going to do very well, when she starts putting together real sentences – you can tell she has then linguistics built-in from being around you guys!

    Also, LOVE that you didn’t tease us – and actually USED SWEATY GOAT BALLS in your masthead this month! You kept your word! Bravo!

  • carissa

    I can hear the cuteness, but can’t see it. 🙁

    What happened to the ads?

  • TripDaddyNJ

    I farted like that while stretching at the end of a kickboxing class once and just looked at my heavier, smellier friend, who was three feet behind me and to my right. Everyone else looked at him, too, and I was off the hook.

    We’re still friends.

    Lesson from Leta: Better to risk bearing the shame than to bear the pain.

  • Laura Horacefield

    I love it! She is so cute. Even the gas was cute. 🙂

  • I love her vocabulary salad! SHE knows exactly what she’s saying — and isn’t she the quintessential page-turner!

    Was that a fart or a burp?

  • momma 2 angels

    Fiercly cute. My daughter is going to love that. She looks pretty cozy with books- are you reading books to that poor child? No toddler blogs? Now teach her that lying in an un-made bed is the proper way with catalogs.

  • Love it. She’s a lady!

  • zitsmom

    Make sure you put this on DVD so it will last years until you can show it at her wedding reception 🙂 Right now you might say-“oh that is mean”-believe me once she puts you through teen hell, payback is great!

  • She is going to WHUP YOUR ASS in a few years for that one. 😀

  • mediaguy74

    Thats Leta’s version of bathroom reading.

  • I think Leta is the cleverest little kid I have ever seen!

  • Haha, I love your supressed giggle as well, that was just what sent me over the edge. Man, I needed a good laugh. Thanks!
    By the way, she’s gorgeous, I just don’t state that every time for fear of wearying you. And naturally, my ovaries are crooning right now. *sigh*

  • erksh

    The chubby pointy monkey-toes are what got me — wavin’ every-which-way.

  • I love the toe pointing & how she gets all serious with the mag on her lap. Gas expulsion is just a bonus. (and hearing your contained laughter was fun, too.)

  • ROFL!! My god, I just noticed the masthead. Brilliant!

  • Don’t worry Leta….those catalogs give me gas, too!

    She’s adorable!

  • HILARIOUS i love it

  • That was unbelievably cute. And she has the most adorable feet. Thanks for sharing!

  • gabip

    Thumbs up Leta, let em rippppppppp….

  • kim

    My absolute favorite part is her feet! Too cute!

  • It was almost like she sat up to aid the air flow in the best direction and then looked up right before to see if you might notice if she did it.

    Though, it may be funnier to pretend that *you* did it and the look she gave you was one of disdain. 🙂

  • Can’t we just set up the arranged marriage now with my son and your daughter… She is the cutest thing ever!

  • stinky12345

    Leta just made my ovairies quiver with excitment. What a cutie and the pink shoes are the shizzle.

  • UpsideUp

    Love Leta’s prehensile toes. Love the catalog skimming. Love the sound effects. My 3.5 yo daughter Zoe is watching with me. She says “Mama. That girl just sat on a duck!”

  • jes

    Ahh, SkyMall. I love reading this because it’s the true-life version of Chindogu.

  • jes
  • Laurlee

    The very best part is when, in a brilliant act of determination to carry forth her reading with even greater fervor after that difficult instant of self-awareness, she channels her discomfort straight into her feet, toes curling and churning and winding around. She’s gifted, I tell you!

  • Meg

    She’s so delicate with the pages! That’s amazing. She’ll be onto the Utne Reader in no time…

  • Maybe she’s practicing reading on the toilet?

  • Kelly Green

    I’ve always said that I am not ready for/don’t want kids…but that was so damn cute that I might have to change my mind just so I can have a wee one who says “Hi, I read” while she’s flipping through a catalog. LOVE IT!

  • StephJ0428

    Heya Heather –

    Nice use of a video camera with a strong mic. 🙂 Leta is too cute, and I don’t think any mother can get sick of hearing that about her own child, do you?

    Dude, have you been listening to a lot of Bjork lately? Leta’s hair is all Bjork-ish. I wish I could do that to my daughter’s hair, but she hates having her hair up. In any manner. Ever. It makes me sad. *Sigh*

    Take care, sweetie! You should look me up if you and Jon ever come to CO; we’d have a rockin’ good time. Coloradans pride themselves on outdoor sports, eating granola, and shoe shopping at DSW.

    Much Love,

  • Jeni

    Uh Reason No. 1 to have kids:

    They read AND fart.

    That was damn funny.

    Reason I covet your life:

    Leta reading and farting AND incredible PINK shoes.


  • Getting some nice reverb on that hardwood floor, Leta. Way to go!

  • Have you tried showing her the Walter Drake catalog?

  • When this started playing, my 11-month-old daughter demanded to get on my lap, from which she proceeded to crawl onto the computer desk until she was 6 inches from the monitor, which she patted and smiled at as the video continued to play. I think she has a crush on Leta.

  • Ok, that was the cutest thing EVER.

    I love her curly toes!

  • drewalter

    Holy shit! She’s like such a little PERSON here. She’s like 14 or something.

    I can’t stop replaying this video — too friggin’ adorable!

  • Oh that you for that fart! I can’t wait to hear it sans diapers. 😉

    BTW, you have inspired me to start taking some shorts videos of my boys. They are older 9 & 7 1/2. Better late than never.

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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