IT'S 10:00. DO YOU KNOW WHAT YOUR KIDS ARE WATCHING? OR, FOR THAT MATTER, WHY THEY'RE STILL AWAKE?

Brent Bozell and the boys at the Parents Television Council have released their lists of the best and worst prime-time shows for families, and Fox leads the way with 6 of the 10 worst, including "The O.C." and "That 70's Show." The council, in a shrewd publicity move, claimed that, hard as it looked, it could only find 9 prime-time shows worthy of family viewing, including "American Idol," "Everybody Hates Chris," and the new CBS drama, "The Ghost Whisperer," starring Jennifer Love Hewitt. We hate to be the ones to break it to them, but where we come from, no show featuring Jennifer Love Hewitt can be termed "family programming" ...

HOW OTHERS SEE US.

Scholastic's estimable magazine for teachers, Instructor, has a feature in their most recent issue called Getting Along With the Grown-Ups: Expert ideas for solving your toughest parent problems. It's eye-opening reading, as it categorizes various parental "types" an elementary-school teacher can expect to encounter, and how to deal with them. Apparently, we can be quite a nuisance. For example:    

The parent who...wants to talk daily.

It happens every morning like clockwork. The children have already come into the classroom, the beginning bell is just a couple of minutes away, and... there she is at your door: Mrs. Talker. She is pleasant but insistent as she catches your eye and smilingly demands your attention: “This will only take a second”-but of course, it never does . . .

Action plan: Let Mrs. Talker know that you would like to give her the attention she deserves, but you cannot do so just before the start of school. Give her several options, times when you can both meet and set a time for the conference . . .

There are several other types, and we've already seen almost all of them in Fellow's kindergarten class.

IN OTHER NEWS, THE CHURCH & DWIGHT COMPANY ANNOUNCED THAT IT WAS  HORRIFIED TO DISCOVER TEENAGERS IGNORING ITS EXPLICIT GUIDANCE AND USING TROJAN CONDOMS FOR ACTIVITIES OTHER THAN WATER-BALLOON FIGHTS

In perhaps the funniest article we've read this year, the maker of Budwesier expresses shock and outrage that young people are playing its "Bud Pong" bar game with - gasp - beer instead of water.    

Anheuser-Busch will discontinue a national promotion called "Bud Pong," a drinking game the company says is supposed to be played with water. However, participants in the game — played with a ping pong ball and plastic cups — often were drinking beer as they lost points, according to a front-page story Sunday in The New York Times. The No. 1 U.S. brewer has been promoting Bud Pong competitions since July, supplying tables, balls and glasses to wholesalers across the United States. Players on one team try to sink a ball into another team's liquid-filled cups. If successful, the opposing team must drink.

Anheuser-Busch says the game's instructions called for water to be consumed during play, not beer, which is the company's main product.

"It has come to our attention that despite our explicit guidelines, there may have been instances where this promotion was not carried out in the manner it was intended," Anheuser-Busch spokeswoman Francine Katz said in a statement Tuesday.

Katz went on to explain other possible misunderstandings tied to Budweiser promotions: In wet t-shirt contests, as the company explicitly states, competitors are not supposed to wear the t-shirts, but place them in buckets of water. Also, in barroom football pools, all winnings, as the company has repeatedly advised, are to be paid in cashews.

WE HAVE TO ADMIT, AT A CERTAIN AGE, THAT RUNNING GAG IN "THE MUPPET MOVIE" - "IT'S A MYTH! MYTH!" "YES?" - CRACKED US UP EVERY TIME

Longtime Muppets writer Jerry Juhl ("The Muppet Movie," "The Muppet Show") passed away this week. Find the obit here, and a tribute here.

Looking back on his career, Juhl said ... "I don't know if it's different writing for Muppets than humans because I spent my whole career writing for Muppet characters. But I always say that with Muppets, you can't write feet."

October 21, 2005 | Permalink | Subscribe to RSS

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