(Note: we found ourselves at my parent’s place during our week long road trip. While The Husband took a shower, I found some books from when I was a kid on a shelf. And then proceeded to read.)
Me: (As he enters) This is bullshit.
Me: No. This book. (Shows him a Care Bears book from the 80’s.) This sends a horrible message to kids.
Snowman: Which I’m sure you’re going to tell me all about.
Me: This kid’s being picked on by bullies, and the Care Bears basically tell him it’s his own fault. “You’ll never make any friends with that look on your face.” And then, “Anyone would be your friend if you just cared enough.”
Snowman: All right, that’s a little weird.
Me: Damn right it is. Someone makes fun of you and then physically assaults you for being nerdy and liking science? Clearly, you’re not caring enough about them. Assholes.
Snowman: Do you have some unresolved Care Bear issues you’re not telling me about?
Me: And never mind that the kid is smart enough to fix a villain’s Freeze Ray, he—
Snowman: Fix what?
Me: A Freeze Ray. For freezing kids. (Turns book to show him.) See?
Me: No idea. Maybe Bad Guy wanted a kid-igloo. Or some hilariously shaped curling rocks. Anyway, the kid’s smart, smarter than Bad Guy. But once the Care Bears unfreeze everyone, the kid gives up science and goes to play baseball with the same asshole who was abusing him earlier. Sounds like anti-intellectualism to me.
Snowman: I think you’re reading too much into this.
Me: Am I? Well, how about this: the supposed moral of the story is, “Don’t seek revenge”.
Snowman: Well, that is a decent point.
Me: Yeah, but shouldn’t the more practical message be, “Don’t follow strange men who’ve confessed to hating all children home”? I mean, him wanting you to help build a weapon of mass destruction is really the best case scenario in that situation.
Snowman: …Okay, I’m with you there.
Me: You know how this story should have gone? “Little Timmy was being picked on by bullies. But he didn’t need to seek revenge because he knew that their own inner misery and emotional emptiness would create an unhappy, meaningless shell of life for them.”
Snowman: As far as I remember, kids aren’t big on long term consequences.
Me: Okay, then how about this: “Little Timmy was being picked on. But one day when the bully tried to trip him, the bully’s leg rotted and fell off. Because that’s what happens to jerks.”
Snowman: You should write kid’s books.
Me: Maybe I will.