One of my biggest goals in growing older is to avoid the curmudgeon, grumpy old man scene. The very idea that I would grow older and be a complainer, not like anything, spend time talking about the good old days is absolutely an anathama to me. In fact, I have a hard time watching Andy Rooney simply because he comes across as a grump. And, I still hate it that two really great actors ended their careers being seen as grumps: Jack Lemon and Walter Mautau. My opinion.
But, I do have a complaint. And, it is one I’ve been thinking about for days. The way that older people are shown on kids shows on TV. My grand daughter and I were watching this program. I can’t even remember the name. No, this is not a joke. Can’t remember would be exactly what I am complaining about. I didn’t pay any attention to the name of the show is why I can’t remember. What happens when we get old is yes, the memory occasionally hides but usually comes back but that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking image here.
On this program, the story line had to do with these rich kids or one of them being a cruise activity director for a group of old folks. Every stereotype known to man was portrayed. They made jokes about hearing, seeing, using walkers, canes, bumpling around: every single stereotype. A laugh track that was overly active. The old folks couldn’t see, they were cripple, they were unweildy on their walkers. The laugh tract continued to go full blast. The old folks came across as mostly dumb but nothing more than super grumpy. And, the lead old guy was Darin, the Love Boat actor who looked his age? Meaning that he has aged like us all despite our obsession with age and trying to starve it off.
But, for a show to really made fun of the sterotypes is not cool nor helpful to all the kids watching the show. I’m writing this article on my iPhone, what about that. Think shows like this will give us episodes on how active and with it we are? I don’t think so.
Examples that we are anything but these stereotypes are everywhere. So, what am I saying? For one thing, the Disney crowd better wake up and smell the roses. I don’t think Walt would go for this sort of programing.