Okay. Those of you readers who have not been around young(ish) kids for quite some time will most likely not understand this post. I apologize in advance. But I feel it is my obligation to make what I consider a ‘public service announcement’.
During my stint as a stay-at-home mom I have observed many things that have gone awry in the world as we know it. Recently while tryingto placate my crabby child with television (I know…I won’t be winning any Mother of the Year awards anytime soon) I stopped from my daily regimen of laundry and dirty dishes to watch some child-centered programming.
I actually enjoyed a few of the shows. Which only goes to substantiate my self-diagnosis of what appears to bemy slowly diminishing IQ, no doubt accelerated due to my main source of human interaction being…a three year-old boy.
Anyway. While I found myself chuckling at some shows,I also found myself gasping at others.
I have decided to pinpoint a couple of Jack’s favorites. It would stand toreason.
Please read on:
Dora the Explorer: This adventurous child and her traveling companion, Boots the monkey, can’t be more than 7 or 8 years old. Which would be fine if she were exploring her way through supervised playdates with friends or dinner at Chuck E. Cheese. But, alas, this is not the case. The young ladyexplores her way all over the blasted country. Her and her monkey. Not an adult in sight. Occasionally, she hooks up with her *slightly older* cousin, Diego, but these meetings are far and few between. And where are her parents, one might ask, while the young lady is traisping all over the countryside?They are usually waiting for her with open armsat the end of her adventure offering up a huge congratulations for surviving the snake-infested jungle…making it across the rapid rushing river…sneaking past the gigantic hungry crocodiles, all the while avoiding contact with the fox that’s been stalking her. Responsible guardians? I think not.
The next time I find my 3 year-old son trekking around the neighborhood with a backpack strapped to his back and a very reluctant shih-poo following in his wake I know who to blame. (Some might say me. I prefer to blame Nickelodeon.)
Max & Ruby: Cute little bunny children. Catchy little theme song. But…where in the heck are thesekid’s caretakers? Due to the lack of any parental involvement I’ve gathered that they live alone with only an occasional check-in by their seemingly worldly Grandma, who I have a sinking feeling is engaged in some pretty sordid pasttimes. And whenGrandmaeventually decidesto show her furry little face, hervisits are shadowed by an utter lack of discipline and total disregard for rules. Who sends their3 year-old grandbunny trucking several blocks home pulling a trailer full of cake and ginger ale? Why no chaperone, grandma? You got some swinging party to attend?
I’m pretty sure this idea of minor bunnies living alone is sending the wrong message to my kids. I can only imagine that Avery and Jack lie in bed at night wondering how Max & Ruby got so lucky with their bachelor pad while they’re saddled with a couple of old people who are interrupting their swagger.
Now. The real question is this: what do I do with this garnered information? Shall I strike these shows from the kids’ collective television repertoirs? Or, shall I spend some time reinforcing the house rules, including, but not limited to:1) no unchaperoned trips through the jungle or over a raging river, and 2) no moving into their own place until they reach, at least, eighteen years of age?
While my immediate defensehas yet to be determined, one thing is for certain.
Rest assured. I’m watching you, Nickelodeon.