Television. I have long believed that it is the bond that unites us all. Find that you can’t figure out what to talk about with a friend or neighbor? No problem. Ask them about what they enjoy watching, have watched, or are planning to watch someday. It is like a miracle cure to an otherwise painful conversation.
Television watching among children is another matter entirely. I have met parents who do not allow their children to watch TV and I am admittedly amazed by this decision. I know that I can only aspire to such greatness. In my world, there are days, especially mornings, where Max & Ruby, Sesame Street, or Caillou miraculously restore peace and harmony in my household.
I must also admit that I use “TV time” to get things done around my house. While I do have an eye on what is flashing across the screen, I am not sitting beside G during the 30 or 60 minutes that I have created for myself.
It turns out that this may not be one of my better parenting decisions.
During G’s last haircut, the stylist asked G what he would like to watch on TV. G happily agreed to Elmo’s World and sat contentedly in the chair. When Elmo’s male sidekick appeared on the screen, I got excited and said, “Look, G. It’s Mr. Nudo!” The stylist looked at me, completely confused. “What did you say?” he asked me. “Mr. Nudo,” I repeated. The stylist laughed. “I don’t know what you are saying, but the guy’s name is Mr. Noodle.” “Are you sure?” I asked. “Yep. I watch this video 12 times a day. I am pretty sure.”
I am Italian and learned the word “nudo” when I was very young. Translated, it means “naked.” Apparently, I had unknowingly taught my son that Elmo’s best friend in the world is named “Mr. Naked.” When I relayed the story to my husband, he furthered my education by informing me that Elmo had not one, but two friends, Mr. Noodle and Mr. Noodle’s brother. My husband thought he was pretty funny when he asked if I would be teaching our son that Mr. Noodle’s brother is named Mr. Porno.
I did not laugh.