Thursday, March 31, 2011

Three for Thursday: 'Parenthood' Gets It Right, Grade School Slang & Liz Taylor, Working Mom

Item #1: Parenthood Gets It Right

Image credit: NBC
The sophomore season of Parenthood has been getting better and better. And more on the mark.

The last episode – about which I wrote a review -- had achingly realistic scenes that tugged at the heart, or at least they tugged at mine. From the parents of a girl who were told that the wife now is very unlikely to be able to bear another child, to the couple who disagreed about mainstreaming their autistic son in a charter school to academically challenge him, to the teenage girl who was distraught over the fact that she had been rejected from the two colleges to which she applied and she doesn’t know what to do, it was filled with stories that resonated.

This is why it annoys me to read that Parenthood hasn’t yet been renewed for a third season because NBC considers it “struggling” in the ratings, according to a USA Today article. There are so few shows that are dramatically capturing so many facets of modern parenting while still keeping it real. This Tuesday night show includes imperfect grandparents, a married couple with a teen girl who ran away from home (she’s now back) and an autistic young son, another married couple where the wife is successful lawyer and the husband’s an at-home dad to their one daughter, a divorced mother of two teens (one who’s had trouble and didn’t get into college and one who misses his AWOL father) and a former couple who must try to raise a son while living separately.

It’d be a huge shame if Parenthood isn’t afforded the chance to continue to improve, ripen and enlighten.

Item #2: Grade School Slang, Getting Beast-y with It

The Youngest Boy -- he who loves to wear his baseball cap on backwards and cockeyed – has recently taken to using the world “beast” as a substitute for the word “cool.” Example: That hat is so beast!

A while back for a brief period of weeks, The Eldest Boy also used that word. However when I attempted to use it too, I was subjected to his scorn as I was a too-old person who was pathetically attempting to use the young kids’ lingo and, in his mind, looked like a numbskull.

This time around, I’ll let The Youngest Boy keep saying “beast” and won’t attempt to co-opt any shred of his coolness by using the word myself.

Item #3: Liz Taylor, the Working Mom
Image credit: People Magazine
In all the news coverage last week following the passing of American screen legend Elizabeth Taylor, a paltry amount of time and space was allotted to the fact that she was the mother of four and was, during several of her marriages, the chief breadwinner in her family.

I was curious to find out what kind of a mom Taylor was, so I poured through three Taylor biographies and many news articles in an attempt to find out. I summarized the inconclusive results of my quest to answer that question in a column.

Image credits: NBC and Boyer Raymond/Sunset Boulevard/Corbis via People Magazine.

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