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The One With the Whaleshark

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Happy New Year!

Is your house choc full of plastic? Or is it just me?

The tree is down, the wrapping has been recycled and Oscar has jumped in and out of every box so now we're just left with all the toys!

Don't get me wrong I love a toy and I have no objection to great chunks of brightly coloured plastic, but I do rather seem to be swimming in them. Swimming being the operative word as the boy has developed a under sea creature obsession fuelled by the Octonauts.

For those of you uninitiated in the Octonauts they are a band of creatures who "Explore! Rescue! and Protect!| under the sea in a giant octopus shaped craft the Octopod! This is commanded by their estimable leader Captain Barnacles, who rumour has it, is based on the suave actor David Niven, and possesses incredible polar bear strength.

What the hell a polar bear is doing 20,000 leagues under the sea with a rabbit, dog, cat, octopus, penguin, sea otter and a half vegetable half tuna looking thing that trills and makes fish biscuits all day long, is anyone's guess.

But hey the boy seems to love it. And more to the point so do I!

Captain Barnacles is a bit of a dish and I'm learning loads about the sea.

Enter.. The Whaleshark.

The whaleshark has caused an obsession in the boy the like of which we haven't seen since his fire engine "Nanu" stage! It's just another episode of the Octonauts like any other but something about Dashi the Australian photographer dog thinking a Whaleshark's mouth is a cave and then getting swallowed by the beast has fired his little imagination (seriously I know it sounds made up but check it out on You-Tube).

Since he watched it all we've heard about is the whaleshark!

"It's a whaleshark!" goes up the cry as anything vaguely resembling a whale or a shark is thrust at you with alarming speed including his purple dolphin bath toy and for a long time the fake fish from his basket of play food. There's only so many times you can say "Yes darling it is" before you lose the will to live.

Then his godmother Clementine thankfully bought him the item pictured above for Christmas. Now he really does have a whaleshark. A proper one. A whaleshark isn't actually a whale, it's the biggest fish in the sea, as big as a school bus and it doesn't use it's teeth for biting, oh no, it's a filter feeder, that's why Dashi, Captain Barnacles and his right had cat Kwazi (the former pirate) all survived being in his stomach.

Can you tell I've read the book and seen this episode a hundred million times?

I'm sure it's just another phase but I quite like this one. Apart from nearly having my eye poked out from a half chewed fin several times a day, as the boy rushes at my with unbounded enthusiasm pretending to be the aforementioned whaleshark, it's very educational and fun.

I can't however decide if I like how he's embraced learning about the sea and the Octonauts ethos to help any sea creature who is sick or in trouble, or to be worried that he's basically obsessed with one creature essentially swallowing another three up!

I'll try and focus on the former but hey, he's a boy, I fear it's the later!