Friday, February 25, 2011


They say communication is key to any successful relationship. Let's just agree that we have yet to have a successful relationship with Max but he is sure working on it. 

Monday, February 21, 2011

Parenting is...

I remember reading somewhere that parenting is pretty much just telling your kids when they have to stop doing whatever it is they are doing and by when.  The things toddlers do usually are a combo of or one of the following three things: dangerous, annoying and/or painful.
Max loves to bite, scratch, hit, torment and laugh at anything he can get his hands on.  Our poor cat, Cayman, stays as far away from Max as he can at ALL times.  This makes cats all the more elusive to Max so when he encountered Simon over the holidays and discovered just how cool of a cat he was, Max went crazy trying to experience all that a tolerant cat has to offer. 
So a big thank you goes out to Simon, the most tolerant cat I know.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Lamenting the Gentrification of Sesame Street

Don’t get me wrong, I love Sesame Street. Always have, always will. And Max idolizes it with almost religious zeal. But today’s Sesame Street is a much different neighborhood from the one I left over 2 decades ago. Most notable is this little red upstart Elmo. Just now as I typed that Max shot me a wary sideways glance. He knew on some primal level that I was bad-mouthing Elmo and he is not pleased.

What did you say about Elmo?

Nevertheless, I will forge ahead with what I have to say and deal with the consequences later during bath time. I want to believe that Elmo (or “The Red One” as we like to call him around the house less we rile up our son by speaking his name aloud) wasn’t developed by a group behavioral scientists and child psychologists after years questionable testing on children. I want to believe that Elmo was a happy accident, created by the good people at the Children’s Television Workshop unintentionally after years of creating lovable Muppets for children everywhere. I want to believe this but The Red One’s appeal is just too great to chalk it up entirely to serendipity.

The face of oppression
 I mean, I knew Elmo was popular, but I had no idea that he had taken over the whole street. And like any occupying force he’s come in and appointed his own people to positions of power. Zoe? Abby? Who are these jokers and why do they take up such a big part of the show? Abby even gets her own supporting cast for her segment every episode. Bert and Ernie, Cookie Monster, Grover, the Count, Oscar the Grouch, even Big Bird…all have been reduced to background players.

These guys put the "Street" in Sesame Street

But most disheartening is the absence of Kermit the Frog. He was the heart and soul of Sesame street, the lynch pin that held the whole cast together. No small feat considering that he was moonlighting on the Muppet Show at night. Just check out this classic bit he did with Cookie Monster. Now that's funny. Nobody could play the straight man like Kermit. It’s not surprising he was the first to get the axe, forced into early retirement once The Red One took over. Now we’ve got this fool Murray as emcee of the show. Kermit the Frog he is not.

Owns a condo in Boca Raton
By now it should be as plain as the bulbous orange nose on The Red One’s furry red face what is going on…Elmo is trying to gentrify Sesame street. He’s trying to turn it into an all-monster neighborhood. Zoe, Abby, Murray...all monsters. Bert and Ernie, the Count, Prairie Dawn, Oscar the Grouch, Big Bird...all non-monsters that need to move out. Cookie Monster and Grover...loyalists to the old regime who must be supressed. The only one to cross over was Telly, who saw the writing on the wall and got in good with The Red One early on

Be afraid
 Sesame Street used to be more urban, more gritty, it's inhabitants more diverse and sometimes even a little scary. (Remember this creepy little cartoon?) They were like orginal Star Wars trilogy compared to the new ones. Anything could happen back then, you never knew what next segment would bring. A cartoon? A song? The letter C? Today's Sesame Street is completely regimented. You know exactly what's coming up, and just in case you forget you've got that idiot Murray telling you every five minutes.

You are no Kermit dude

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Once upon a time Richard let Max play with one of his toys.
Richard realized that Max's version of playing wasn't the same as his.
Then Richard thought twice before letting Max play with one of his toys again.
The End