Wednesday, January 13, 2010

This Post Brought to You By the Letters "S" and "H" (as in, Sense of Humor - get one)

The other day I was reading a website I frequent called ParentDish. It’s a parenting website that features interesting news, reviews, tips, yada yada yada about raising kids. Generally I enjoy it, but lately it’s been sticking in my craw a little bit (and let me tell you, nothing irritates me more than a clogged-up craw).

The subject was an awesome clip from Sesame Street featuring Elmo being sung to sleep. That would be enough to bore even the least interesting child to tears, but the geniuses at PBS brought in the hilarious Ricky Gervais to croon to the little red Muppet. Gervais begins by singing softly, then abruptly amps up the song by adding in a chorus screeched at the top of his lungs. It’s startling to the viewer – and especially to Elmo – but it’s laugh-out-loud funny, both because of Elmo’s hair-standing-on-end reaction and because Gervais looks so damned proud of himself.

But the anal retentives at ParentDish were “just as shocked as Elmo” over the chorus of the song and were surprised to hear that PBS hadn’t had any complaints about the skit. It was at this point in my reading when my eyes rolled so far back in my head I noticed a stain on the butt of my jeans. Really, ParentDish? Did you actually expect real live, everyday parents to (1) be upset over a cute bit that is obviously only meant to make kids laugh and (2) take time out of, I don’t know – actually parenting – to ring up PBS and bitch about it?

Of course, I absolutely loved the song and immediately called my kids over to the computer to take a look. They were shrieking louder than Ricky Gervais (with laughter) and - hold on, this may surprise you - none of them clutched their little hearts in fear and nary a tear was shed. Shocking, huh?

According to ParentDish, “Kids need images of trustworthy grown-ups, especially as they're relaxing at bedtime.” Well guess what, kids also need images that make them laugh and make them happy and they most definitely need to be surrounded by dedicated grownups who make childhood exactly what it should be – FUN.

And those grownups need websites to read that don’t make them want to unplug their computers and throw them out on the street.

So what do you think? Am I right on this one? Did the Ricky/Elmo clip make you laugh or were you appalled? Be sure to leave a message in the comments below. Although you should be warned – if you actually write that the clip bothered you I may be forced to make fun of you publicly.


Sea333 said...

Hilarious. Sam thought so too. I'll have to show the rest of the kids on the morning. In my house, they'd love it. I can tell you what kind of parents would not like's those ones who have routines and bedtime rituals, and perfectly coiffed children at all times. You know the ones I'm talking about -- that mommy who looks at you appallingly and claps her hands over her little prince's ears when you suggest a spur-of-the-moment playdate that might involve a cookie or two before dinner? Anyway, didn't Elmo fall end up falling asleep? That's a win in my book...if the kid is asleep in their own bed and not camped out in the hallway or in the kitchen sneaking root beer and a pickle, that's considered a successful night in my house!

bdennis said...

Joe & Cyndi,
That's really funny. I can't wait to show that to my son, he'll love it. This is the first time I've read your blog, and it's hilarious, I love it, you have a great sense of humor. I look forward to reading more. I hope it's ok to share this because it's too funny not to.

jmbweb90 said...

If it were a parent trying to sing their child to sleep in this manner I might question the technique. But hey, really none of my business. But this is obviously for entertainment purposes. Why would anyone be offended? If your child suggests he might like a similar bedtime song and you don't think it's a good idea just say "no". Sit back have a chuckle and see it for what it is - entertainment - not parenting advice on how to sing your child to sleep.


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