Crib Notes: A Random Reference for the Modern Parent" has the answer (he might be, if he has large ears, long eyes or the mark of a conch shell on one palm) and other facts in an enjoyably quirky new book. How do the gestational periods of women compare to other mammals'? We beat rabbits by a wide margin, 226 days to 31, but the Indian elephant trumps every other creature on the list, with 624 days of pregnancy. There are stage directions for "Itsy-Bitsy Spider," a list of Dr. Seuss characters, tips for making a dog-shape balloon and a list of morals taught in Aesop's Fables. ("The Fox and the Goat" teaches kids to "look before they leap.") "
There was no book out there that spoke to the sort of urban and hopefully hip people we were before we got pregnant," says Elizabeth Weil, who compiled the book with Amy Maniatis. "We wanted to put together a list of everything you wanted to know but probably wouldn't look up yourself, from economics and things that were useful to things esoteric and whimsical." The whimsical includes old wives' tales to predict a baby's sex (if a pregnant woman picks up a key by the round end, she'll have a boy; pick up the long end and it's a girl). The esoteric is for the mom who'd like to make her baby multilingual, giving the word for "mother" in 82 languages. And dads-to-be aren't forgotten: they can find out if a girl or a boy is more expensive to raise. -Newsweek