Monday, January 14, 2008

Why Can't Kids Just Have Fun?

The kids and I watched one of my favorite movies the other night- A Hard Day's Night, with the Beatles.

I love this movie. And may I say how grateful I am that my teens will let me introduce them to an actual black and white movie and not look at me like I'm a poo flinging circus monkey trying to get them to join in.

They loved it too, and I'm glad there is such a fun account of my favorite version of the band. They still put out some fine music in the later years, but they were hairy and weird and looked as if they might smell like an old pepperoni pizza. I know that the early Beatles were on drugs, too, but it didn't show. They were just cute and sang good pop songs. Later on, they just got strange.

Much like Britney Spears. She's turned from a point-n-laugh to point-n-cry. I'm starting to really feel sorry for that girl. Not to the point of recording Leave Britney Alooooone videos on YouTube, but her family life is a tragedy. Those little boys are going to need serious therapy.

I think of other examples- and unfortunately, there are plenty- of young stars faced with unrelenting pressure, bucketloads of money, and practically no accountability. Is it any wonder that they implode? I'm not one to blame parents for everything, but in some situations, I have to say Mom and Dad failed miserably. Stage parents make me burn. You're not a manager, you're Mom. You're not a director, you're Dad. You're not a promoter, you're a protector.

And it's not just in L.A. or New York. In our little town in Oklahoma, my daughter came home shell-shocked from her first audition for a high school musical. She said it was like being interrogated by terrorists. There were certain stars of the show that really did an awesome job, but I knew they had been in training since they were zygotes. We went into a flurry of "Should we get her into dance classes? Private vocal and acting coaches?" And then I realized that if she wants to take classes for fun, fine. I myself went to college on a theater scholarship, and had a ball. But I want her to have a good time before she has to worry about agents and exposure and missing out on her teen years because she simply had to nail that audition to be happy girl #4 in that sno-cone commercial.

Whatever she winds up doing, I'll support her and help her all I can. Including telling her NO when the occasion merits. Until she makes those decisions about her life, we'll have fun in the car going to the mall, singing She Loves You, Yeah, Yeah, Yeah at the top of our lungs.


StarvingWriteNow said...

Wow, I haven't seen that movie in ages! And thanks for putting that song in my brain the rest of the day...

(yeah, yeah, yeah... yeah, yeah, yeah YEAHHHH!!!!)

Missie said...

I have never seen that movie because the Beatles always and forever have given me the heeby-jeebers.

Robyn said...

Beth, I live to serve.

C'mon, Missie! Even in the adorable, moptop days?

Bernita said...

Right on. You're rockin', Robyn.

Kimber An said...

You're a great mom, Robyn! The other evening I asked my husband, "Do you think our children will ever realize how much we invested in them?" We meant the long hours of college and work, plus sacrificing my paycheck so I could stay home for them, plus paying for the best education we could afford, et cetera... We concluded they wouldn't really appreciate it until they had children of their own. Then, we promptly turned to our children and passed down that age-old parental curse, "Just wait until you have kids just like you!"

Robyn said...

Oy, Bernita. If you only knew how many times that song has been sung to me in my life.

Hee, Kimber. When I was going through my first pregnancy I gained a whole new love for my mother.