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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Erwin the Little Patient

Erwin the Little Patient
You have a green toy company to thank for this little plush anatomy lesson. Kids simply lift his hospital gown, unzip his chest and the little guy's guts are theirs for the exploring.

Behold Erwin the little patient from Sigikid. He’s a plush doll with a crooked smile and take-out organs. Measuring in at 16-inch (41cm) and machine washable, Erwin hides his special nature under a hospital patient gown. Lift up the gown to see Erwin’s nippleless rectangular torso.

Unzip his chest cavity to find six removable plush objects: lungs, a heart (Valentine shaped), intestines, liver, spleen and kidneys. The six count is a little deceptive because the kidneys include an attached bladder and the intestinal piece contains both small and large intestine and also the stomach and esophagus.

Oh, and my wife, who is a nurse, doesn’t know a cecum from a hole in the ground. Yep, I correctly identified the brown nodule on the lower intestine as the appendix.

Each organ is a different, unrealistic and cheery color. The organs also have one, sometimes two, color-coded Velcro strips that indicate to which other organs they connect. Underneath it all, a posterior skeleton is embroidered on the inside back of Erwin’s interior.

Behold Erwin the little patient from Sigikid. He’s a plush doll with a crooked smile and take-out organs. Measuring in at 16-inch (41cm) and machine washable, Erwin hides his special nature under a hospital patient gown. Lift up the gown to see Erwin’s nippleless rectangular torso.

Unzip his chest cavity to find six removable plush objects: lungs, a heart (Valentine shaped), intestines, liver, spleen and kidneys. The six count is a little deceptive because the kidneys include an attached bladder and the intestinal piece contains both small and large intestine and also the stomach and esophagus.

Oh, and my wife, who is a nurse, doesn’t know a cecum from a hole in the ground. Yep, I correctly identified the brown nodule on the lower intestine as the appendix.

Each organ is a different, unrealistic and cheery color. The organs also have one, sometimes two, color-coded Velcro strips that indicate to which other organs they connect. Underneath it all, a posterior skeleton is embroidered on the inside back of Erwin’s interior.

Actually, it was my wife who befriended a German exchange student in high school and later reconnected with her long lost friend via Facebook and convinced him to ship Erwin to us. That’s right. Another Facebook miracle!

Erwin retails for 27 Euro. Repackage him with a German dubbed copy of the French film Le Premier Cri and stuff the empty spots with Kinder Eggs and you can ship the whole thing at the most economical rate of 14 Euro and receive Erwin just six weeks later!
Included with Erwin is a booklet containing color photos of each plush organ segment along with rhymes in German that help you memorize what each organ connects to.

Das ist das herz. F├╝hlt Freude und Schmerz, pumpt gleichzeitig Blut und alles wird gut.

Ach so! This is the heart. It feel pleasure and pain, while blood is pumping and everything will be alright. Or at least that’s what Google Translate tells me. I’m sorry Herr Westrup, I didn’t pay attention in class.

Tangent: The friend recently posted his first comment on Thingamababy, weighing in on the au gratin issue sharing a European perspective. I forgot that nude beaches aren’t that big a deal in Europe. We’re talking about a region where Renaissance art was born while in America we hide nude statues behind curtains.

In any case, my best guess on why Erwin cannot be shipped to America is that Sigikid has an American distributor and maybe distributors don’t like the nature of borderless commerce. But I haven’t found the doll being sold anywhere in America. I have an e-mail in to the distributor to find out if I totally wasted my money shipping the doll from Germany.

Wasted? No way! My daughter thought she was playing doctor, but I totally saw Dana Scully doing an autopsy in my living room!
Step 1: make the incision with your kitchen playset dinner knife. The metal plate is for storing removed organs.
Step 2: Inject the anesthesia so the patient doesn't feel anything. Apparently slicing into a chest doesn't cause pain, but pulling out organs does.
Today we are performing a complete extraction of a gastrointestinal tract -- the first in history! There's no word yet on how the patient will be absorbing nutrients in the future.
The patient remains conscious during the surgery.
Grandma bought the doctor/nurse outfit at a toy store closing sale. An advantage of having a petite kid is that she takes forever to outgrow clothes.
While I'm in here I'm going to go ahead and remove your stomach and esophagus.
I love the intent look on her face. She didn't say a word the entire time.
All of these organs stick to each other via strategically placed Velcro strips. The orange patient wrist band isn't included with the doll. My daughter made it with construction paper and tape. Aside from cardboard boxes, my daughter's favorite toys are pen, paper, scissors and tape. She's sporting a real stethoscope around her neck, found at a science teacher's retirement sale. Best 50 cents I ever spent.



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