Good piece coming in this Sunday's New York Times Magazine on the media studio that is the La Habra home of Octomom Nadya Suleman. Seems like there is always a film crew there observing Suleman and her 14 children, including of course the eight babies. From the story:
On the outside, Suleman’s house is a two-story, tan-and-white tract home with Spanish tiles and dead grass to the neighbors’ green. Except for the grass problem, it’s virtually indistinguishable from millions of its Southern California neighbors. On the inside, however, several features mark it as significantly different.
The first is the sheer tonnage of children’s apparatus, to wit: trucks (dozens), balls (hundreds), books, monkeys, bears, babies, Ernies, Berts, trolls and a 70-inch flat-screen television for the Wii. In back, the yard is half-covered with AstroTurf, and then there’s a swing set, a jungle gym, a trampoline, three slides, multiple hula hoops and at least four to six each of the following items: shovels, pails, flowerpots, boots, scooters and bicycles.
The next is the number of staff people populating Mundo Octo. On the day of my first visit, in early September, I observed four nannies (a number that drops to three during the week, when the elder children are in school, and one at night), a film crew of four and a children’s-welfare representative mandated by the State of California to ensure compliance with its labor laws.
Given the toys, the staff, the overwhelming kidcentricness of it all, the home feels less like a home and more like an event, a day-care center, a film set. And that’s exactly what it is much of the time.
John Bowe is the writer.
Gillian Laub for the New York Times