Picture Book Spotlight: Let’s Do Nothing
Let’s Do Nothing by Tony Fucile (Candlewick, 2009).
On July 24th, many unschoolers (and others) will celebrate “Learn Nothing Day.” It’s a tongue-in-cheek sort of holiday, the point being that it’s impossible to live a day of your life without learning something.
Well, I’ve just found the perfect picture book to read on Learn Nothing Day. Except, darn it, what if we learn something from the book?
Ah, it doesn’t matter. I’ll never be able to wait until July to share this with my gang, anyway.
Frankie and Sal are two small boys of the very busy sort. They’ve done it all—played all the games there are to play, baked all the cookies, read all the comic books. In a quest for something new to do, they hit upon the notion of doing nothing at all. Nothing. “Zero movement. NOTHING.”
Good luck with that, fellas.
Sal gets off to a strong start, suggesting they sit still as the stone statues in the park. Frankie’s game, but…statues attract pigeons, don’t they? Who can do nothing when there are pigeons to shoo?
I love it when a book actually makes me giggle out loud. Frankie’s expressions are priceless, especially when he’s being a giant redwood or the Empire State Building. Writer/illustrator Tony Fucile has a gift for visual punchline—which stands to reason, considering his background; Fucile is an animator whose credits include such films as The Incredibles, Ratatouille, The Iron Giant, and The Lion King.
Well, in the end the boys discover it’s as impossible to DO NOTHING as it is to LEARN NOTHING. So I take it back. I don’t recommend reading this book for Learn Nothing Day after all—just like Frankie and Sal, you might accidentally learn something from the experience.