|If I home-schooled, I would teach a class in Power Bitching. In related news, I should probably not home-school.|
Every morning, after getting up, emptying his bowels and painstakingly bestowing at least four spoonfuls of yogurt onto the living-room carpet, my 15-month-old son turns and jabs a stubby finger in the general direction of our television. “Dis!” he cries insistently. “DIS.”Spolier alert: I cave. I cave every time. Our new breakfast ritual is me, bleary-eyed and dressed like a less put-together Jeff Lebowski feeding a pantsless Sam yogurt while he alternately stares at/dances to Yo Gabba Gabba! or a 1970s episode of Sesame Street (Jeff has an aversion to Elmo, which I suspect has nothing to do with the recent sex scandal and everything to do with the fact that Elmo speaks in falsetto AND has no anus.)
|I could also teach a course called "Innocence Lost: Projecting My Perverse Sense of Humor Onto Children's Book Illustrations" (Subtitle: "But Seriously, Guys, You Had To Know That Looks Kind of Wrong")|
Like, close your eyes and listen to DJ Lance Rock talk some time. Now, picture that instead of his retro Power Ranger outfit, he's wearing a standard-issue hospital gown, and instead of playing with dolls in a nondescript white room, he's... okay, he's still doing that, but now imagine that the walls are padded. Easy, right? Because DJ Lance Rock is actually a character in American Horror Story: Asylum.
|"Hear that, children? It's the big red dildo cyclops that orders me to KILL!"|
Did someone throw a handful of Skittles, a TV antenna, and four mice into a TARDIS? I mean, seriously, what the fuck are those things and how do they affect brain development other than creating a new and terrifying category of nightmares?
I love Sesame Street. I love the Muppets. I have a heart. But look closer, underneath the protective cotton candy clouds of nostalgia. Now what do you see? A seven foot-tall bird who talks like Lennie from Of Mice and Men, and who hallucinates a giant, depressed scrotum for a friend? Yeah, me too.
Here we have:
- A big bumpy red phallus with one eye and fangs named Muno
- A Peptol Bismol-colored buttplug who wears a collar named Foofa (NOT Fupa, to my great disappointment)
- A striped, unibrowed, horned, noseless monster named Brobee with freakishly long arms (not pictured)
- A turquoise cat with gills named Toodee (NOT Tootie, to my--and I imagine Kim Fields'--great disappointment)
- A yellow robot named Plex
- DJ Crazypants Orangina
And here are my questions:
- Why do they have to be so unique to the point of being terrifying? What's wrong with a regular cat, or a dog, or a bear, or, I don't know, a dildo with TWO eyes?
- Why is it that every kids' show is also a great example of something that extremely stoned people would be captivated by? Is being a toddler basically like being really high? Or like being Joey Lawrence? Are their minds just in a constant state of woah? Everything made for kids is fucking trippy. Even Thomas the Tank Engine, which is boring as hell. (If I had the right pharmaceuticals, I feel like I could spend about two hours trying to decipher why Sir Topham Hatt is a really snazzy dresser but has no ears.) I must conclude from this that children actually lose brain cells, not gain them. And do not even say "Baby Einstein" to me--I have seen that low-budget shit and there is no way that watching a circa-1989 lava lamp for ten seconds is turning my baby into a genius. By that logic I could flush my toilet seventeen times a day while humming Fur Elise and Sam would be at Harvard by 2016.
- Why do all children's shows have to have a character with a unibrow who is also a total dipshit buzzkill? It's giving us a bad name, for real. (Side-eye, Brobee, be cool for like one second. How hard is that?)
I am seriously thinking of getting rid of our TV. But not, of course, the Melrose Place DVDs. Maintaining a rich cultural environment is key to raising well-rounded kids. Or so I'm told.