Amy Robach, Today Show host for this Christmas Eve, brought a young YouTube sensation to my attention, and I wish she hadn't. It really started my Christmas Eve all kinds of wrong. This must be how Lewis Black feels all the time.
Here's the scene: Christmas morning 2009. A three-year-old boy, after opening many presents (including a Wii) opens yet another: children's books. Cue the screaming violins from Psycho. Little Angel in monster footie pajamas (how appropriate) begins shouting at his parents about how books are not toys and you don't give books for Christmas. He actually said "What the heck is that?!" "No, I hate it!" "Yeah, poo! I said poo!" Little Angel quickly changes gears and begins sizing up his next wrapped gift, indicating that it better not be books.
I'm not amused. I'm horrified. Maybe books are a little unexpected at Christmas. Hell, I know that. I've unwrapped quite a few books and encyclopedias on Christmas morning, in addition to other non-toy gift items such as socks and pajamas...do you think a four year old is as excited to receive a pair of socks as she is to receive She-Ra's Crystal Castle?
Would you rather...
I asked Steve if he thought that was acceptable behavior. He said, "I would have been disappointed about getting books when I was three...then again, when I was a kid, I used to roll a bunch of socks together, call it a "ball" and play catch with myself in the yard. I was poor, remember?"
Mommy Dearest, who instead of seeing her child's Christmas tantrum as a sign of the apocalypse, or feeling ashamed that she forgot to teach manners to her son, just laughed and laughed...then posted the video on YouTube to share with friends and family...because when your child acts like a spoiled, ungrateful brat, well, that's a special moment you want to share.
The video went viral, reaching a million hits since Christmas Day last year. To date, this video has 1,945 "likes" and 836 "dislikes" wait, make that 837, and apparently the comments became so harsh and critical that Mommy Dearest disabled commenting on the video and posted this in defense of her spoiled, ungrateful child:
"After opening a whole bunch of toys, my son 3 year old came across a present with books....keep in mind that this was kinda like his first "real" Christmas....and again he's was only three years old!....let me repeat. ONLY THREE YEARS OLD... And that he could just about understand and get the concept of the whole gift getting thing. I guess much to the blame of me, the media, and every commercial out there on TV he was more under the perception that you only get "toys" for christmas. To him Books are the fun time we spend reading (no less than three) every night before he goes to bed. Let me make something clear again. HE REALLY DOES LOVE BOOKS! But I'm guessing he was "overwhelmed" after opening way too many gifts (my fault I went overboard that year) and I think he felt "tricked upon" when he opened the books.....plus the fact that we were laughing at his reaction kinda egged him on to say the Poo statement..... He really is one of the sweetest kids I know and to see this reaction (if you know him yourself) IS cute."
She goes on to assure us that she has taught him better since then. Taught him what? That Christmas is in fact not all about presents, but about the birth of Jesus? That it's more important to give than to receive? That we must remember those who are less fortunate than we are? That when given a gift, the only acceptable response is a smile and a "thank you"? No, you silly poo face! She taught him that at Christmas, in addition to lots and lots of toys, you also receive other non-toy items as gifts! That's the lesson Mommy Dearest taught Little Angel! Hey, Mommy Dearest: don't feel like it's your responsibility to teach your child about manners, gratitude, or selflessness. They'll teach it to him in public school!
Fast forward one year later. Mommy Dearest and Little Angel are on the Today Show, where Little Angel's behavior is nothing short of obnoxious. After listening to Mommy Dearest (whose fabulous parenting skills won her a trip to New York to the Today Show) bitch about how others don't find Little Angel delightful, and she doesn't understand, and he really does love books! We have a moment of truth: Amy Robach presents Little Angel with a present. Spoiler: It isn't books. Little Angel unwraps what looks to be Woody from Toy Story. Little Angel's reaction: "Oh, I already have this". Ahh, yes, Mommy Dearest, you've done a glorious job. Your work is done. After some prompting, he eventually said "Thank you". Jeez, what do you expect? I mean, he already has it!
Oh, and just to reiterate: Mommy Dearest wants you to know that he really does love books! Because, ya know, that's the only thing wrong with this video.