Day 354: Cut The Bad Guy In Half

Now that Silas’ desire to watch Spiderman and Batman has exhausted, and occasionally out-witted, our utopian dream of limiting his exposure to violence, he and his friend have been talking in raspy voices about finding bad guys and “getting them dead.” Usually the method is cutting someone in half with a shovel or rubber sword; both startlingly gory ways to go.

I know they’re just pretending, but it’s still disturbing to hear a human who can’t yet wipe his ass or sleep by himself, boast of slicing his enemy in two. I watch the shows with him occasionally and have never seen such a medieval execution.  I must have been staring at my phone and missed the episodes of Spiderman directed by Quentin Tarantino.

They don’t know what “getting dead” really means; at least I hope not. We live in New Jersey, not Somalia (right, Danny?). Being dead just means you get a really big owie and don’t wake up for a long long time. Sometime around 17 or 18 years old, he’ll start considering the heaviness of an eternity of non-existence. The panic attacks will follow, then the drinking, and before he knows it, he’ll be me. For now, though, I wish he’d go back to watching Caillou, because as whiny as that balloon-headed crybaby is, at least he’s not thwarting evil with amazing feats of violence. Unless, of course, you consider his high-pitched voice to be a form of torture used to hypnotize parents into extending bedtime and making more cookies. I see this as a real possibility, but luckily, it’s hidden deeply enough to go unnoticed by younger viewers.

I’m alienating my child-free readers who live in a safe, calm, and quiet world where Caillou doesn’t exist. Imagine if Charlie Brown was bipolar instead of clinically depressed. If you’ve ever heard the ear shrapnel of a child whining, that’s how Caillou sounds even when he’s happy. As grating as he is, Caillou is innocent, and his emotional dilemmas relatable. Superheros in comics and cartoons are written for adults, but animated for children. I would prefer to teach my kid about the real bad guys like billionaire hedge fund managers, sweatshop operators, and pharmaceutical lobbyists.

Maybe for every episode of Batman, I’ll make him watch a Michael Moore documentary. He’s really just Caillou all grown-up.

I'm a contributing writer to Parents Magazine, GQ, Psychology Today and some others. My book, "This is Ridiculous. This is Amazing: Parenthood in 71 Lists" is available here Look for two more books in 2015: "Must. Push. Buttons (Bloomsbury Kids), and an as-of-yet untitled memoir I’ve appeared on Comedy Central’s “Live at Gotham” and “Nick Mom’s Night Out." I live in New Jersey with my wife and two sons and enjoy making them laugh more than anyone else.

15 comments On Day 354: Cut The Bad Guy In Half

  • Never heard of Caillou and watched the YouTube, "Caillou picks strawberries". Holly Moly!!!

    The most annoying thing I have ever seen. If you can't say no to your kids for that program, you will never be able to say no to your kid for drugs.

    My head was exploding during that one little clip. I can't imagine what you all go through.

  • We actually forbade (forbid?) our son from watching Caillou and distracted his tears with Batman and Law and Order (the intro music to that one calmed him down and mesmerized him). We realized his whiny, pouty, demanding and fat-headed behavior was not terrible Twos but a slow morph into becoming Caillou. Within a week of no Caillou, he was our sweet funny son again who understood our love and cookies was a privilege, not a right…we even gave Caillou back after a month, just to test out theory. It was totally right. .I'm not sure what that says about us, that we can handle the violence and darkness more than the whiny- baby obviously -hair-challenged innocent….but he's 11 now, and for the most part, he doesn't have any issues…

  • I wish Caillou would get dead.

  • "Maybe for every episode of Batman, I’ll make him watch a Michael Moore documentary. He’s really just Caillou all grown-up." Hysterical….

  • "Ear shrapnel" – love it!

Comments are closed.

Site Footer