Thursday, January 6, 2011

Three for Thursday: 'Soccer Mommed' Spoof, 'The Middle' Parents Revolt & I Won't Watch Dead/Dying Kid Fare

Item #1: 'Soccer Mommed' Spoof

Jen Singer, of MommaSaid, has created a fabulous send-up video lampooning how super-involved and nutty the world of youth soccer has become. In the video, a mother of a 9-year-old boy wants to sign him up for soccer and another woman, whose son has been playing since pre-school, said it’s too late for the 9-year-old. When the first mom says she herself didn’t start playing soccer until she was 10 and played all the way through college, the second mom scoffed at that as representative of the “dark ages of youth soccer in America.”

My favorite part? When the first mom asks when practices are held and the second mom says matter-of-factly that they're on, “Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday.” Sundays are reserved for games, of course.

Item #2: The Middle Parents Try to Take Back Their Lives
The Spouse and I loved the latest episode of The Middle in which the parents of three, Frankie and Mike, decided to spark a revolution and “take back” their house from the tyranny of their children after Frankie had raced around to three different fast food restaurants to get a separate meal for each kid, blowing off the parents desires. And her kids still weren't satisfied and wanted her, who worked all day, to run back out to different places and buy them a few more items. The parents had been caving on everything the kids asked of them because they thought that’s what they needed to do to be good parents.

And even though, after taking a strong stand that adults are in charge, NOT the children, Frankie and Mike capitulated in the end to their offspring, I think it’s worth having a substantive discussion about how American parents SHOULD aggressively strive to strike a balance between spending time with their children and attending to their needs, with the fact that the kids should NOT rule the roost and be catered to as though the parents are indentured servants at the children's beck and call.

Item #3: I Won’t Watch Dead/Dying Kid-Centric Fare

With the voluminous critical acclaim which has been heaped upon the film Rabbit Hole and its star Nicole Kidman, you’d think that a pop culture buff like yours truly would’ve put the film on my shortlist to see either in the theater or on DVD.

But no. Hell no.

Why? The film focuses on the aftermath of the death of a married couple’s 4-year-old son in a car accident. Kidman plays the mom in mourning while Aaron Eckhart plays the haunted father, their marriage fraying under the emotional gravity of what has happened.

My Pop Culture column this week over on Mommy Tracked is about how I tend to avoid, if I can help it, watching TV shows or movies in which kids are gravely ill and/or die. Why? Because I’m already an intense worrier – I think of myself as an in-recovery helicopter/safety crazed parent – who doesn’t need to start obsessing over the varied ways in which harm could befall my three children, nor do I need to try to put myself in the place of a grieving parent because that would prove painful. As Liz Lemon might say, "I don't want to go to there."

Does that make me a wimp?

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