I’m going to let you in on a secret. But, uh, you can’t tell anyone, okay? It’s pretty bad, and I don’t want word getting out, so let’s keep this between you and me. Deal?
I have to confess. I just have to.
It’s been weighing on my conscience for too long.
Okay, deep breath.
I…I let my preschooler…wow, this is difficult.
I…I let him watch old episodes of Sesame Street.
Whew. There, I said it.
What? What’s the big deal, you ask?
“These early ‘Sesame Street’ episodes are intended for grown-ups, and may not suit the needs of today’s preschool child.”
So warns “Bob” the cartoon character, a nebulous blob with a hat who introduces the episodes on the DVD collection, Sesame Street: Old School.
I’ve had these DVDs (volume one) for several years now. In fact, my husband bought it for me before our son was even born. What can I say? I’m a big fan. Now that the kiddo is almost four, I figured it was high time I busted out these precious episodes for his viewing pleasure.
I had never watched the introduction before, but he wanted to watch the cartoon at the beginning, so I relented. Hearing the warning, a chill ran through me. My blood went cold. Should I turn this off? Will it leave my son an emotionally scarred mess? Will he ever recover?
The seemingly harmless introduction began, and so began the horror. What is this? Children roller skating with NO HELMETS? And…wait. What is Cookie Monster doing?? That is NOT a responsible way to consume snacks. Not at all. He’s wolfing down those cookies with reckless abandon. Doesn’t he realize how many empty calories he’s consumed?
And, OH DEAR GOD, that little girl is whittling! Somebody get that pocket knife away from her before she cuts off a finger! Or goes on a stabbing spree!
Oh, the humanity.
And now my son is counting…in SPANISH.
What have I done?