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AND I QUOTE / What Political Books Are Saying

WOODEN TEETH & JELLY BEANS: The Tupperman Files,\o7 By Ray Nelson and Others (Beyond Words; $12.95; 63 pp.)\f7

April 21, 1996|John Balzar

"President Martin Van Buren's nickname was 'Old Kinderhook.' He approved things by signing 'o.k.' Many believe that is where the phrase 'o.k.' came from. . . .

"Warren Harding would play poker at least twice a week. Once he gambled away an entire set of White House china. . . .

"William McKinley's wife, Ida, couldn't stand the color yellow. She banned anything yellow from being in the White House. She even ordered the gardeners to pull up all the yellow flowers."

****

Say, mister, how come you talk about politics if it makes you crazy?

Shut up, kid, read this. Never too young to lose your innocence these days.

Published for grade school readers, this gleefully illustrated volume by four Oregon artists/animators/friends, with an introduction by ex-President Gerald Ford, offers tidbits about each of the men to hold the presidency. Who liked prune whip for dessert? Who was the first to wear long pants in the Oval Office? Plus, the book contains a short fable about a young boy named Tupperman and his campaign to be class president.

BUT WHAT ABOUT THIS: To the little girl sitting on your lap, how about this matter of the gender gap?

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