The first installment of my Amazon.com “Pick” of the Day is here! Today’s pick happened just after lunchtime… just as the lunchables pizzas were beginning to settle in my stomach and just as the knowledge of having 4 more excruciating hours of labor was settling in my head (worst moment of the day). I was led to an aisle and a shelf and an item that seemed very confusing to me. It was a book:
Of course, the title grabs you right away. “My Mother is So Smart!” The picture grabs you second. Now, I won’t go into detail on the drawing, because I’m not an expert on these things, but I don’t think children ever hug their parents like that. I don’t even think it’s physically possible. But I’m not an expert.
Back to the title! When I first looked at it, I thought, “Wow, you know that’s really nice. Some little boy or girl must really think highly of his mother.” Another second later, and the realization hit: the boys and girls that would read (or be read) this book are hardly old enough to have an account on Amazon.com. In fact, they’re well over a decade a way from even being able to get their first job. So who’s ordering this thing?
Then it hit: mom is. Mom is ordering a book about how smart she is to read to her kid.
On the surface, this doesn’t seem so bad. Mom wants to spend time with her child, and is ordering a book so they can do just that, while potentially educating the child in the ways of reading and comprehension. However, there are greater evils at work under the surface, evils I sniffed out right away because I’m generally good at sniffing out greater evils. I don’t want to call it brainwashing, but it’s surely the next synonym down a rung or two on the ladder of verbs that involve persuading a child.
Now it almost seems like this book is more for the mother than it is for the child… some kind of reassurance the mother needs that she is… well you know. So smart. Now, I’m not saying she’s not. There’s a good chance she is. And that’s awesome. So awesome. But is the book really necessary? I feel like there are easier, more honorable ways of getting respect from your child than force feeding it to him just before bedtime. And there are a ton of books way more interesting that your child may actually enjoy (Goodnight Moon being the standout in my head at the moment). But I’m not a parent. So maybe I don’t know anything.
Until tomorrow! 10 more hours, hundreds of thousands of more items, endless possibilities. Gets me up in the morning.