I read another 100 pages in the bio, so I'm almost a third of the way through. I can see why this one, while one of the definitive ones, wasn't a blockbuster. The writing style leaves something to be desired. It's about as kind to Walt as one can be and still be considered a scholarly effort, which helps explain its persistent appeal. Considering how the first strike was described, it'll be interesting to see how Watts handles Disney's interaction with HUAC.
R. bought Teddy Dusty the Talking Vacuum, a toy vacuum cleaner made by Playskool. This is not the jr. hoover that I had in mind, however, there is a relatively quiet, authentic vacuum noise underneath the extremely chatty remarks. Apparently Teddy played with it in the box at Toys 'R' Us, and then played with it over an hour steadily as soon as we got it home and took it out of the box and put the handle on. He's been playing with it (and the corn popper, which has recently become interesting again, and one of the ride on toys that a neighbor gave him) on and off since. Whenever he attempts to get us to plug in the real vacuum, he can be diverted successfully to Dusty. Woohoo! It may be plastic, and it may be ersatz, but I'm not worried about him hurting himself on it, and I no longer feel like I'm going to lose hearing from the vacuum being on an hour a day.