In case you missed my last completely fangirl over the moon post, “Murphy Brown” is back on the air.
I tried to show restraint. Really, I did. But when Earl came home that first day, and I’d discovered that “Q&A on FYI”, which was the first episode I ever recorded on VHS and, therefore, the first one I memorized word-for-word, was on OnDemand, I couldn’t resist. I remember it, 20+ years later, word-for-word. I figured, eh, what’s the harm? So, as Earl and I played chess, we watched. Actually, I figured I’d watch, try not to quote along with the episode, and she’d…I dunno…play chess.
If there were ever a doubt Earl is my child, it was erased when, as soon as the episode ended, she looked at me and said, “Can we watch another one?”
So we did. And everyday since, she’s asked to watch an episode. This morning, she asked for the first one again – “Q&A on FYI.” I must admit, it makes me a bit giddy.
I feel I must disclaim: I’m not letting my 8-year-old daughter watch every episode of “Murphy Brown.” I know this series well enough to know which episodes are appropriate, which ones aren’t, and which ones I don’t remember enough to make that call before re-watching myself first. But of course, the line she latches onto is perhaps the blue-ist of the lines in any of the episodes she’s watched so far, although in context, it’s not blue at all. In “Q&A on FYI,” Corky is tasked with covering the art history category of trivia. During her research at Murphy’s house, she pulls Eldin aside and asks for his help explaining an abstract painting titled “Nude Descending a Staircase.” The line? “WHERE is the nude? WHERE is the staircase? Why can’t they just call it ‘Fish Eating a Cheeseburger’?”
ALL DAY, I heard that line. ALL. DAY. Mom, I’m sorry. I know your pain now. Egad.
We pulled up the painting, looked at it, and agreed that Corky had a valid point, but that, regardless of validity, it still wasn’t an appropriate line for school. That it might make ME laugh and HER laugh, but we’ve seen the episode, we understand it. Other kids her age haven’t. Their parents may not even have seen it.
Which means I just had to send an email to her third grade teacher explaining that, if my child starts talking about nudes descending staircases and fish eating cheeseburgers, she should remind my kid that quoting “Murphy Brown” at school is not appropriate. Not because it’s bad or anything, but because other 8-year-olds will likely look at her like she has 3 heads. “I got that look at school a lot,” I told Earl earlier today, “and I was older than you are. It’s not a fun look to get.”
I’m pretty sure that email did 2 things – won whatever pool the teachers at Earl’s elementary school may have going for “Weirdest Parent Email of the Year” and sealed my place as “Best Parent EVER.”