*stepping up to the microphone shyly*
Hello. My name is Christina, and I’m addicted to kids’ TV. I enjoy watching my daughter’s cartoons and shows. I realized I had a problem yesterday morning, when I was up before anyone else. I switched on the TV, and instinctively turned it to Playhouse Disney. Even though my daughter was still asleep, I watched Bear in the Big Blue House. I knew she wasn’t in the room, but I sat there and watched the entire episode.
I’ve always been a TV addict, especially cartoons. Just read the first entry in my baby book for confirmation: “June 28, 1976 (1 week old) – Christina already likes watching the TV”. Seriously, folks, that’s what it says; 7 days old, and already hooked.
Then I got sucked into the Dungeons & Dragons cartoon, and G.I. Joe. Inspector Gadget and Voltron were then added to my lineup, along with My Little Pony, Belle and Sebastian, and Rainbow Brite. OK, so I was an uncommitted tomboy.
Each Halloween I would dress as a character from one of my favorite cartoon shows. Thanks to my grandmother’s excellent sewing skills and a lot of cornstarch for my hair, I was an awesome looking Wiley-Kit in 4th grade! No longer was a generic witch or a simple white- sheet ghost good enough for me.
Once I hit the late-80′s, I was beginning to grow too “old” for cartoons. I was in junior high, and I was supposed to be more concerned with make-up, hairstyles, fashion, and after-school specials on TV. But I couldn’t give up the habit. I watched Rescue Rangers, Darkwing Duck, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I also enjoyed live-action kids shows, like Hey Dude and Kids Incorporated (sing it with me folks: “K-I-D-S, Kids In-corporated!”).
High school was a big change for me. More responsibilities, more homework, and more acting like a grown-up and thinking about the future. But for my secret love of cartoons, nothing changed. Oh sure, I watched 90210 and Melrose Place like every other TV obsessed teen. However, I wonder just how many teens were hurrying home after school to catch Sailor Moon and Animaniacs?
Even in college, I continued my animation obsession. Animaniacs and Tiny Toons continued to be my favorites, although I was branching out into anime thanks to Sailor Moon.
And now. Now I have a child, and I’m watching Bear in the Big Blue House without her. Can I really call myself an adult at this point? I mean, half the time when I let Cordelia watch TV, I’m really the one sitting there watching Blue’s Clues, Higglytown Heroes, and Dora while she’s on the floor with her back to the TV looking at her books.
(Of course, not the Wiggles. We both love the Wiggles, and that kid would fight off a gang of irate midget clowns to get to see her Wiggles.)
So yes, I admit that I’m a kids’ TV addict. I’m not proud of it, but I’m not about to get rid of the TV, either. I admire the strength of those like Dutch and Wood, who can survive without the lure of the TV and raise their daughter in a mostly TV-free environment. I can’t do it. I need my TV.
I try to limit the amount of time Cordy watches TV. We have plenty of TV-free time when we play, sing, chase each other, and read books. There is a little bit of time when I use the TV to distract Cordy so I can accomplish something (like laundry). But most of our TV time is together-time, and I’m stupidly happy to sing along with the characters on the screen and clap my hands with Cordy as we watch together. I’m seriously considering putting together a workout video for moms using footage from Wiggles DVDs.
So there it is. I’ve come clean about my obsession. I’m not the cool, hip mommy people might think me to be (then again, no one probably thought I was a cool, hip mommy to begin with). I’m actually an overgrown child who still loves the innocence and “good triumphs evil” mentality of children’s programming. And I will still be first in line if they ever put Animaniacs out on DVD.
Whew. That felt good.
God, I’m such a geek.