One of these days, a police officer is going to pull me over for suspicious behavior while driving erratically. He will suspect that I am driving while intoxicated, but he will be wrong.

In fact, he will probably just nod once I roll down the window and laugh at my plight and, if he’s a parent himself, will know exactly the kind of punishment I’m already having.

I am often a little suspicious while driving.

This is because whenever my 3 year-old son is in the car, he demands to watch his favorite DVD, which is ”Thomas and his Friends From Hell.”

It’s one of those DVDs with those songs that we are required by international law to expose our children to, because they connect us with a time when we were a simpler, happier, much stupider world.

Consider ”Old McDonald”, for instance.

It starts out fine: ”Old McDonald had a farm.” But then it goes to ”E-I-E-I-O,” as though the lyricist had a bunch of extra vowels he needed to get rid of before moving on.

Couldn’t he have come up with WORDS for the second line? How hard is it to think of a line that rhymes with ”farm”? For example: “Basher tore off his left arm.” Or: “Slept with six goats to keep warm.”

But ”Old McDonald” is Handel’s ”Messiah” compared with “Thomas & His Friends,” a song apparently written by somebody with a severe case of obsessive compulsion, as we see by the highly informative first verse: “They’re two they’re four they’re six they’re eight…”

Not to mention the other children’s songs.

The biggest problem with children’s songs is that many of them call for actions on the part of the listeners.

My son, Neo, who is very strict, expects everybody to perform these actions. So if we’re listening to ”Thomas & His Friends From Hell,” and he notices that I’m using my arms for some frivolous activity such as steering, he will repeat, ”Dad, Dad, Dad! Do it! Dad do it!” until I let go of the wheel and contort my face the way they do it. I have discovered that I can, in fact, steer with my forehead, but visibility is a problem.

But the worst song, from a driving standpoint, is ”Sponge Bob Square Pants.”

“Who lives in a pineapple under the sea?
Sponge Bob Square Pants!
Absorbent and yellow and porous is he.
Sponge Bob Square Pants!

This is the one where you sing about, and DISPLAY yourself while inside the car.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: 1. No, really, who lives in a pineapple under the sea? 2. Do I really have to do that?

Yes, a small child can get you into all sorts of trouble.

Thankfully, our friend Billy Montinola runs Sponge Bob programs in the country where we can at least have access to them without spending a mini-fortune.

Billy is to me what Yoda is to Luke.

I can’t make anything happen without his magic.

But I still have to wear the shirt.


But looking like an idiot is a small price to pay for the joys of parenthood.

I know you parents out there agree: carrying all those baby bags, tripping all over the toys, having milk stains all over your shirts, you’re happy, right?

Sure you are!

If you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands!

I’d clap with you but Neo tied my hands.


About Asmartrock

N. Mark Castro is the Southeast Asia Director of JUMP DIGITAL Asia, which is an internationally-awarded and fully integrated digital marketing agency with 5 out of 10 offices in the ASEAN region. He is also the Secretary General of the Philippine Business Club Indonesia, managing and assisting the traffic of investments between the Philippines and Indonesia. He shuttles between Indonesia, Philippines, Myanmar, Singapore, Cambodia, and Australia. The views posted here are his own and do not in any way reflect the views of the companies he represents.

Posted on July 12, 2012, in General and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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