Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Cootie Catcher

Last evening a (mostly) family group converged on my house for dinner. Luckily I didn't have to cook! More folks just happened to stop by as they were riding bikes down Lawton Lane. Lachlan was there, of course, greeting everyone as they arrived. After dinner I made him a cootie catcher. He had a grand time finding "bugs" in everyone's hair.

Village Craftsmen's newest (and youngest) employee, Ali, was there. She was delighted to discover why the folded paper device she had made as a schoolgirl (and which she and her friends employed to "tell fortunes") was called a cootie catcher. I was surprised to learn that cootie catchers seem not to be used to find cooties any longer.

So I googled "cootie catcher" and frankly had a difficult time finding an on-line explanation for why it is called a cootie catcher. But finally I discovered this from Wikipedia: Made of folded paper, the "cootie catcher" is one name for a popular hand held toy among school children. One surface is blank, the other drawn with dots. The joke is to show the blank side, then run the toy through someone's hair, revealing the dotted surface. It is made so each surface looks the same apart from the "cooties". The toy is also also called a "fortune teller" and used in play to tell fortunes.

Here is a link with instructions for making your very own cootie catcher (though even these instructions show it as a "fortune teller"): Have fun!

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is the story of the brave and courageous members of the US Life Saving Service. You can read it here.

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