Thursday, February 18, 2010

Too Much TV

So I'm beginning to think that our kids watch too much TV (and by "TV" I really mean mostly DVDs as we gave up on the ever-changing PBS line-up many moons ago). Do I think this because the first thing my son says when he gets out of bed in the morning and after his nap is "I wanna watch a moooooo-vie on the TV?" No...that's not it. Is it because the TV is pretty much on the entire time that someone (other than myself) is awake and at home? Nope. That's not it.

There are actually two reasons that I think our kids watch too much TV:

1) AJ, who has always laughed when he heard other people laughing (that's a good thing, right? "Rejoice with those who rejoice?"), joins in pretty much every time he hears a "bad guy" laugh at someone else's hardship/situation. And he's started using an "evil" laugh too. Larry the Cucumber falls down and the "mean" characters laugh at him? AJ "laughs" too. With an angry smirk on his face and some gravel to his voice. No amount of, "Buddy, it's not very kind to laugh when someone has fallen down" seems to make any difference. He still does it. I guess the saving grace is that he has yet to do it in real life. And it's not like we watch "bad" movies. We're talking VeggieTales here. That's like watching the Bible on TV.

2) Joanna is both scared witless and fascinated by tall, thin characters that lean towards the viewer. She screams like a banshee whenever a "scary" character comes on (not necessarily a "bad" guy, just scary to her), but no amount of reassurance or distraction will keep her eyes from being riveted to the screen. As she screams. Like a banshee. So Jafar when he becomes a genie in Aladin? Scream. Goliath the pickle from VeggieTales? Scream. (She doesn't even have to see the pickle itself...just hear the music leading up to his coming.) Mr. Nezzer's Grandma in the Easter Carol (NOT a "bad" character). Scream, climb up mama, not to get away, but to get turned around so she can see more and scream longer.

So we put up with the whining when I tell AJ to play instead of watching a movie. We try to limit him to a couple a day. We use the excuse "Daddy will be home soon" earlier and earlier each day. We let his over-reaction to a scratched DVD be an excuse to turn it off. We make sure he puts the one in the DVD player away first before he can get another one out (which sometimes takes all day if he's lost the box).

And yet we still end up watching TV too much. At least we mix it up with JellyTelly from time to time! Maybe AJ should give up DVDs for Lent.


Rose said...

There has been more tv here at our house over the last couple of weeks. The snow makes it harder and harder, plus of course the fact that I was feeling so tired and et cetera...anyhow today I was SHOCKED when I realised I had let my son watch 3 hours of television (also DVDs of course). Why don't we hang out tomorrow? That will mean less tv for both boys... :)

Mr. Big said...

my four year old has taken to asking when deciding on a DVD to watch "Does it have mean guys in it?". If the answer is no that DVD is rejected.

CaptainConundrum said...

Hmm, see, I always thought the laughing along with the bad guys was mor e a part of AJ's recital of the movie from start to finish. He knows the movie so well that he speaks the script right along with the characters, including evil laughter. Then again, maybe the mere fact that he knows the movie that well is a sign of too much DVD-watching too. LOL.
That bit about Joanna is hilarious, btw.