I’ve recently been introduced to Flat Stanley, a children’s fictional character with a gruesome beginning.

Upon receiving a giant bulletin board from his dad, Stanley hangs it on the wall over his bed. During the night, the board falls, flattening him. Fortunately, Stanley survives and now he can visit his friends by being mailed in an envelope. Every kid’s dream…

My involvement began when a second grader sent me her Flat Stanley. My assignment: return Stanley with pictures documenting his visit, along with information about Illinois. The idea is to make learning fun. Every kid’s dream…

Flat Stanley arrived at an opportune time. Entertaining out-of-town visitors, we ventured into Chicago and took Flat Stanley along.

You know how walking a dog will get people to talk to you? Flat Stanley’s the same way. Everywhere we went, Stanley generated interest. I talked to strangers all day.

Our first stop was Millennium Park with the infamous Bean (aka Cloud Gate). It’s a beautiful sculpture – genius design, fabulous reflections.

Stanley and the Magic Bean

Flat Stanley and The Bean

We also walked to Grant Park to see Buckingham Fountain and Lake Michigan.

Flat Stanley at Buckingham Fountain

Flat Stanley at Buckingham Fountain

The trip culminated with a visit to the top of Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower).

Flat Stanley at the top of Willis Tower

Flat Stanley at the top of Willis Tower

I quickly overcame my shock about Stanley’s grisly inception and found the wonder of taking a fictional character on an adventure.

If you ever get the opportunity to entertain Flat Stanley to make learning fun, I highly recommend it. Help achieve every kid’s dream…

May the farce be with you!

Your IFF,



About the Author

Pam Waits has more than 20 years of experience in human resources with 10 years in the top HR spot for mid-sized companies. She currently works as a Human Resources consultant. Additionally, she holds a Ph.D. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology.

Pam is also a writer and humorist, defying the perception that human resource professionals lack a sense of humor. She’s a leader who believes humor is an important part of a healthy business culture and a necessary part of life. 
If you’re too busy to laugh, you’re too busy.

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