I can’t say exactly when it happened, but somewhere between the long sleepless nights with a newborn and the obsessions of a toddler (who is convinced he is a racecar, and tells everyone. I don’t even understand how Nascar is a sport!), this fine-tuned tool I have always been so fond of has become permanently muddled.
To know me before my son was to know a devout follower of classic literature. I could discuss the finer points of Finnegan’s Wake and Middlemarch and not drop a bead of sweat. I was a snobby individual, and proud of my snobbiness, wearing it as almost a badge. But now, I spend my days thinking:
Where did Piglet disappear to during the entire Piglet’s Big Movie?
Why does Elmo tell kids the best place to learn more is to watch a TV channel in every episode of Elmo’s Room? Does anyone else have a problem with that?
And where can I get my own Tootles like Mickey Mouse has, because it seems like a really useful invention? Continue reading →
While it is not surprising I have written an editorial on The Beatles and parenting for Green Spot Blue, it IS surprising that it took me a year to get around to doing it.
Here is the beginning of my article:
John, Paul, George, Ringo, and Your Children
When you think of The Beatles today, it’s hard not to get lost in the image of the innocent and sweetly sarcastic four moptops running around while “Can’t Buy Me Love” plays loudly. Yet, The Beatles were more than that; they probably were the most important artists to come out of the last century. In only ten years, they created a wealth of music and cultural influence that is still impacting and inspiring people today… Basically, I am not saying anything here we haven’t read or heard before since their break up almost forty years ago. Continue reading →
I have a new editorial on GreenSpotBlue. This time I take on the problems with the modern Sesame Street. Here is an excerpt:
There is that expression you can’t go home again, and as the older I get the more I am surprised by how much that exactly relates to. From old haunts from my college days long closed to family gatherings where beloved members are no longer with us, things are different, changed, and never will be like they once were. It’s a sad fact of life. Yet, as a parent I never thought it would be true of Sesame Street.
Sesame Street, growing up, was one of my streets. It was real to me and I loved the show. I had favorite characters (I was Super Grover for one Halloween and Ernie for another; thanks to my mom’s amazing ability to make costumes) and I had many of the songs memorized. For example, when counting to twelve it is impossible for me, even to this day, not to sing the numbers like the Pointer Sisters.
So when I became a father I looked forward to introducing my son to the street I “grew up” on. But the days of Mr. Hooper are long gone. The days where stories would unfold over the hour with “commercials” about the alphabet and numbers in between has joined our favorite shopkeep. It is a show now of scheduled “segments” each one a show onto itself, losing the spontaneity, surprises, and energy that made the original an unpredictable joy to watch.
To read more of the article (including my point by point issues with the show and what can be done to save it), click here.
I can’t say exactly when it happened, but somewhere between the long sleepless nights with a newborn and the obsessions of a toddler (who is convinced he is a racecar, and tells everyone. I don’t even understand how Nascar is a sport!), this fine-tuned tool I have always been so fond of has become permanently muddled. Continue reading →