Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Strange news on Thursday

OK, so it's a day early, but we're off to a wedding in Scotland tomorrow so I won't be able to post for a few days. You may have seen the new Marmite ad on TV recently. I was struck by this article. Now if your child was scared by this ad would your response be:

a. Explain to your child that it isn't real, give them a cuddle, and shrug your shoulders. Kids get scared by the strangest things (I have friends with a toddler who's scared of the hoover), they'll probably laugh at it this time next week.

b. Decide that you really shouldn't be parking your kids in front of the TV all day; if you limit them to an hour, say, and then do something more constructive with them the rest of the time, they'll be unlucky to come across the ad.

c. Sympathise with them, but try not to make a big fuss over it, just distract them quickly with something else. There are kids all over the world who are hungry, orphaned, homeless, dying of AIDS, or abused, so if their biggest problem is being a bit freaked by a Marmite ad, it doesn't do to make an issue over it.

d. Be glad that they've got the imagination to be scared by things. In The States, the film censors asked the views of a child psychologist about the film Jaws, and asked whether it would give children nightmares. The psychologist asked why they thought it was a bad thing if children had nightmares. It's a natural part of growing up, and if you determinedly shield them from everything they don't like on TV, they'll be unable to cope in really scary situations when they're a bit older, like a pet being run over, or their first day of school, or sneakily watching Texas Chainsaw Massacre at their mate's house. But you're a bit annoyed that they might be put off something cheap and rich in vitamins, which makes a relatively healthy sandwich when you really can't be arsed to do anything else.

e. Tell them that the Marmite blob is real, it lives in the cupboard, and if they EVER put plasticine in the cat's fur again, or belt their brother over the head with a toy lorry, or leave a solitary green vegetable on their plate, it will come out and rip their face off (yes, yes, I'm joking).

d. Become so concerned about this issue that you write to Ofcom, an official body regulating television in the UK, and arrange for several adults to waste public money by sitting in a room watching an ad for yeast spread and deciding exactly how scary it is.

I don't have kids of my own, by the way, so I'd be interested in any feedback.

Yet again, I've been pipped at the post by a fellow blogger when it comes to the strangest story in the press. And yet again, it's from The Guardian, and involves bizarre research into animal behaviour. I leave you with this very funny post from Little Red Boat. You couldn't make it up.

OK, off until Sunday now!


Blogger Mystic mog said...

Veery eeenteresting !
Its amazing how polarised the two camps are I love marmite and thought the ad was great. She who must be obeyed hates it and didn't like the advert either !

10:33 pm  
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