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Monday, December 17, 2012

What Are Kids READING These Days?

Lily was watching Hannah Montana.  Hannah was having her weekly "I'm conflicted about revealing the Hannah secret" issue because although her alter-ego Miley had good grades, her constant touring as Hannah meant that her transcript and application to Standford showed no extra-curricular activities.  Hilarity (or so one would assume) ensued. 

I found this episode to be particularly irritating because Miley, exhausted from travel, asks the woman at admissions if she can eat her sandwich because she hasn't eaten all day.  This just seemed so...stupid...and then she jams the whole thing in her mouth and attempts to answer questions as bits of half chewed sandwich cascade out of her mouth.  Ultimately she spits it into napkin.  Awful.  But I digress.

Emma, watching this for perhaps the hundredth time, said, "So stupid...how can they not see she's Hannah Montana?  Same voice, same face, just a wig!" 

And I heartily agreed, "I know, it's as bad as Superman!"

And Emma replied...

"Who's Superman?"

Leslie cackled out loud at the look on my face.  I say cackled because she was unable to contain mere laughter at the expression on my face.  It was...like...VIOLENT laughter.  Hurtful violent laughter.  For my part I just stared numbly at my daughter thinking about all the ways in which I've failed in her education.  (She has no interest in seeing Star Wars despite my protests that she will almost certainly not be accepted to Yale if she can't pick up Star Wars references...(oh...Yale because she asked at what school Des Durant from The Voice played football, and I replied Yale, and she said, "Yale Law School" and I said, "I don't know if it was the Law School, but Yale is a great school.")).

And so this morning I told her in my own words the origins of Superman (she knew who he was at least but I guess the sticking point was that she did NOT know who Clark Kent was...or that he even HAD a secret identity).  I told her there would be a quiz, and I'm almost certainly going to buy her a Superman comic book to read.  We covered Jor-El, Kal-El, The Kents, Louis Lane, Jimmy Olson, The Daily Planet, Kryptonite, red and yellow suns, etc.  Tonight we'll discuss Metropolis, Lana Lang, The Forbidden Zone, and as many of the major super villains as possible, even if we have to turn her book report in a few days late.

Then Spiderman...cause she didn't know Peter Parker's name, or WOULDn't have if my wife hadn't muttered "Peter" under her breath...neither could come up with the last name.

Some outtakes: 
"And he'd duck into a phone booth and take off his glasses and fly away."  .
"What's a phone booth?"  (okay, she didn't really say that, but it would have been funny as shit if she had, because let's face it...where's a phone booth these days?  She DID say, "Wouldn't people just have been able to see him through the glass?"  and I replied, "These were phone booths with privacy."

"And Peter Parker works at a photographer for the Daily Bugle."
"Do all superheroes work for the newspaper?"
"No."
"Sure seems like it."

"Then there's Aquaman," Leslie added.
"What was his secret identity?"
"He didn't have one."
"Why not"
"He was always underwater."

What the hell are they teaching kids these days?

Ridiculous.

18 comments:

  1. I guess I should be proud of Ben, who has been going around "singing" the Star Wars theme for a few weeks now. And he wore his Spiderman jammies last night. Maybe you should try for that boy!! ;)

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    1. I'm happy with my girls...I just need to 'boy them up' a little, I guess.

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    2. Bribes. Bribes always work.

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  2. They were not private phone booths. People are just not supposed to look at you while you talk in there. LOL

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    1. They WERE! They had paneling on the outside of them, they were painted. They weren't the glass kind they were the British kind. I'm almost positive. Either that or he just used his super speed to change in a blur...

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  3. My boys are "at level" with their super hero knowledge...and Star Wars. They are lacking appropriate knowledge of the distinction between Disney Princesses, however. I caught my oldest calling Cinderella "Belle" the other day. I need to remedy this..

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  4. that's hilarious... I wonder about the education of our youth as well.. she definitely needs to see the Superman series.

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  5. The thing that made me laugh the most was Leslie laughing at you. Because I do that to Bobby all the time. You mens just have the funniest reactions to things sometimes. ;)

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    1. SUPERMAN!!!! How was she allowed out of first grade????

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  6. Ha! Thanks for the Monday morning laugh.

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  7. Thank you for this post...as a geek girl I appreciate you teaching your girls!

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    1. Woohoo! I'll start her off with DC universe and THEN work her way up to Marvel.

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  8. Oh, we're very familiar with the Marvel and DC universes in our household. Of course, my husband and I (both nerds) spent quite a bit of time and effort making that happen. Otherwise, we'd have some, "I like Spiderman! My favorite color is red." going on...

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    1. As a KID, I thought Marvel was inferior. As an adult I realize it's the other way around. Although now I think the comic landscape is a lot different. DC seemed very black/white, with the exception maybe of Batman, who was a little darker. Marvel's heroes were "realer".

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  9. Hmm. Is it because the movies were so popular when we were kids, do you think? Or comic books were more popular? I think everyone (male, female) knew who Superman was when I was growing up (and I was the nerd who knew 'em all - but that's because I had a younger brother who watched pretty much nothing but Superfriends after school for years and I liked superhero geekery. Still like it, actually.)

    Also, I love Emma. And Leslie's "because he was always underwater" is a very good point. Who needs a secret identity when you're hanging with Flipper all the time?

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