“Little Beauty” – a book review
I met some friends* at Barnes & Noble this afternoon for coffee and some kid-free (well, my kids free, anyway) social time. One friend had her littles with her, so we brought our coffee to the kids area to chat while the kids played with books and such. One book, on display, was this one about a gorilla and a kitten.
The story starts off great – Gorilla and Kitten have this great relationship; they are the best of friends… until one day, when Gorilla loses his temper and smashes the TV. When the “keepers” become concerned about Kitten’s safety and come to take Kitten away, Kitten jumps in and explains the damage away by taking the rap for smashing the TV and everyone laughs and the incident goes away.
The bigger, stronger person in this relationship gets mad, smashes something and then the smaller and weaker person, wanting to protect the relationship, takes the blame? The everyone laughs and it all goes away?
Let’s stop for a moment and think this lesson through. Your friend, dare we say “partner” in your relationship, gets mad and breaks something. Rather than be chastised for such an outburst, and having a discussion on more productive ways (giving our kids alternatives and strategies) of dealing with our angry feelings, we’re going to teach our kids that:
(if you’re the aggressor) you don’t have to own up to your momentary lapse in good judgement and apologize, or
(if you’re the bystander) that it’s okay to lie and say that you did something you did not in order to protect your partner?
And people are PRAISING this piece of work? Are you freaking kidding me?
“Little Beauty” by Anthony Browne – it’s a piece of something all right.
Surely we can give our children better reading material, right?
* for Amy, who knew I’d blog about it!