THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID

GA Voice - - Blackgaypride - By MELISSA CARTER

Full circle. When life comes to­gether in this way it’s worth tak­ing a mo­ment to drink it in. One such mo­ment hap­pened when my son, Mr. Carter, dis­cov­ered “Sesame Street.” He isn’t even 2 years old yet and has al­ready mas­tered the iPad. When he isn’t try­ing to Skype with Grandma Mil­lie Pete, his fa­vorite pas­time is the PBS Kids Video app, where he has ac­cess to Elmo any­time he wants. Hav­ing grown up with “Sesame Street” my­self, I can’t help but tear up when the fa­mous har­mon­ica notes be­gin and I watch him sway to the same theme song I heard count­less times when I was his age. He could care less about my fa­vorites, Bert and Ernie or Big Bird, but how ful­fill­ing it is to have a tele­vi­sion pro­gram last long enough to be gen­er­a­tional.

The pro­gram that comes a close sec­ond on Mr. Carter’s fa­vorites list is an­other fa­mil­iar show, “Daniel Tiger’s Neigh­bor­hood.” Fa­mil­iar be­cause it takes place in the Land of Make Be­lieve from its in­spi­ra­tion, “Mr. Rogers Neigh­bor­hood.” All the crea­tures we got to know as kids like Daniel Striped Tiger, X the Owl, and Hen­ri­etta Pussy­cat are now grown with their own chil­dren, and those kids are the fo­cus of this modern an­i­mated se­ries. Its theme song is based on Mr. Roger’s orig­i­nal, and an­other tune that choked me up when Mr. Carter be­gan to ob­ses­sively re­peat it.

I can’t help but think of what other shows Mr. Carter might pick up from Mom. There’s the orig­i­nal “Elec­tric Com­pany,” high­light­ing the tal­ents of Mor­gan Free­man and Rita Moreno and re­spon­si­ble for the choice of Spi­derman as my fa­vorite su­per­hero. Then there’s Bugs Bunny, a sta­ple of Satur­day morn­ings in my house and the one cartoon that can bring back mem­o­ries of my fa­ther’s bel­low­ing laugh at the an­tics of Wile E. Coy­ote and Foghorn Leghorn. Just rem­i­nisc­ing about them has in­spired me to pur­chase these clas­sics and place them in tod­dler-eye view, in case some­one makes the choice to view them him­self. Just say­ing.

I have come to un­der­stand that part of our ba­sic hu­man con­di­tion is the need for ac­cep­tance, to be part of some­thing or some­one, and the ac­cep­tance by a child of the things his or her par­ents loved can be the ul­ti­mate ful­fill­ment for that adult. Be­ing able to al­ready share the same ex­pe­ri­ence of my first tele­vi­sion shows with my son is in­cred­i­bly sat­is­fy­ing, and I can’t help but feel like a lit­tle kid again when watch­ing him learn these lessons for the first time. His first words in Span­ish, the let­ter of the day, and recit­ing num­bers with The Count to name a few. He isn’t old enough to re­al­ize, how­ever, the most im­por­tant les­son about life can be found in that very nos­tal­gic song, since as an adult it’s way too easy to al­low fear to sep­a­rate your­self from the world.

Come and play, ev­ery­thing’s a-ok.

“I have come to un­der­stand that part of our ba­sic hu­man con­di­tion is the need for ac­cep­tance, to be part of some­thing or some­one, and the ac­cep­tance by a child of the things his or her par­ents loved can be the ul­ti­mate ful­fill­ment for that adult.”

Melissa Carter is one of the Morn­ing Show hosts on B98.5. In ad­di­tion, she is a writer for the Huff­in­g­ton Post. She is rec­og­nized as one of the first out ra­dio per­son­al­i­ties in Atlanta and one of the few in the coun­try. Fol­low her on Twit­ter@Melis­saCarter

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