Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Some random thoughts on Sesame Street

I seem to be slowly returning from the land of the cold-ridden, brain-fogged mommy. It's been a good half-hour since I blew my nose, and I can almost put a complete sentence together again. Except that I've been sleep walking through the last few days, so I don't really have much to write about besides the Sesame Street episode we've watched a good ten times already. The same episode, over and over again. I know they learn from repetition, but let's be honest, how much learning actually comes from Sesame Street?

What I've learned over the past 48 hours is that there are in fact a few episodes that Elmo does not play a feature role. And that they are still repeating a bunch of segments that I remember from my childhood. Like the one where the penguin tap dances on the iceberg. I always liked that one. I didn't learn anything from it, but I do like penguins, and the thought of penguins tap dancing always made me happy.

I suppose one could claim that children learn letters and numbers from Sesame, and I'm sure some do. But if you ask C at the end of the episode what the letter or number of the day was he shrugs and tells you what Elmo did. It's all about Elmo in our house. Well, and a little bit about Telly. A seems to really like Telly. He was one of my favorites too, along with Snuffy. Although now that everyone can see Snuffy, he's not nearly as cool. Sorry big guy, but it's true.

Why DID they make Snuffy real, and how did they do it? That event clearly happened in between the time that I used to watch Sesame as a kid and now, which is a pretty big time gap. I would think that an imaginary friend would be a good thing to show; there is no shortage of imaginary friends in our home, and I bet that they too would like a character to identify with on TV. There have to be many more imaginary friends in the world than big yellow talking birds. I'm just saying...

Perhaps I'll suggest to C that his friends might like to stage a sit in on Sesame Street. There's an episode for you. Much better than watching the dingers ding. Sesame could be teaching non-violent demonstration techniques instead of numbers and letters. I bet the religious right wouldn't take issue with that at all. Trust me on that. I live with a Republican you know...

Speaking of Republicans, did you know that in June a Republican-dominated House Appropriations sub-committee tried to cut all federal funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting over the next two years? I know I'm a little slow on the uptake on this one, but hey, better late than never. Apparently funding was eventually restored to the bill, although not at the original level. I mean who could cut federal funding for ding alongs? I couldn't. But then again I like tap dancing penguins.