Anyone who has ever read children’s books knows the premise of each story isn’t necessarily realistic. A guy named Jack who finds some magic beans that grow into a stalk that goes high, high into the sky? Really? I have a feeling I know what Jack got into, and although it was something organic, it wasn’t beans. And Jack is stingy and needs a lesson in sharing.
Even if you don’t have kids, I’m sure there’s been sometime in your life that you’ve been forced to babysit someone’s pride and joy. If not, you’re lucky, and misfortune will surely find you at some point. For those of you who have withstood such babysitting torture, you know you were forced to spend endless amounts of time reciting nursery rhymes and fairy tales from musty books, all the while wishing kids understood the meaning of “hangover” and “inside voice.” (Although part of you wanted to know about the places you’ll go. Just admit it.)
For some random reason, I recently got to thinking about children’s storybooks, and the web of crap we weave every time we present our youth with a Little Golden Book. No wonder little Johnny thinks he can create a time travel machine and make a million dollars. It’s because he thinks people will invest in his project instead of stealing the idea and then suing him for damages. Sorry Johnny. Welcome to real life. Grab a beer and join the misery.
So what if there were children’s books that actually told the truth? What would those books be about? Well, fortunately for you, I’ve thought about this issue and came up with a few book ideas that I think should be made to give kids a better understanding of real life. After all, it will just make it easier on them when they realize Santa isn’t real and the nerdy guy never gets the pretty girl…at least not until he’s 35 and owns his own video game company.
Let’s not sugar coat the truth anymore (unless “the truth” is the rim to my strawberry margarita class. Then please, sugar coat it.)
Below is the list of ideas I’ve come up with for children’s books that will most likely dash the hopes and dreams of children everywhere. Enjoy!
**WARNING: Before we go any further, please heed my advice. Don’t even think about stealing these ideas. Little Johnny may be naive about intellectual property theft, but I took two IP classes in law school and I will seriously cut you if you even think about stealing. For reals.**
Title: All that glitters, gets kicked out
Synopsis: Daddy came home covered in glitter and lipstick, so now he lives in an apartment that smells like cat pee.
Title: The Farm that never was
Synopsis: Your dog Buddy isn’t at a farm, mommy ran over him with the car and he will never come back. He’s buried in the backyard and daddy runs over his grave with the lawnmower each week.
Title: Cops and Robbers
Synopsis: What those handcuffs in mommy’s nightstand are really for.
Title: Lies Pinocchio told me
Synopsis: What happens when Pinocchio discovers his parents were the real liars. He discovers that lying doesn’t make your nose grow. Rather, size doesn’t matter at all. (Okay, maybe this is perpetuating another lie and will start a whole new set of issues, but that’s for another publisher to address.) This book will be followed up by the sequel, Pinocchio goes to Washington
Title: Swimming and eating: The real story
Synopsis: Contrary to popular belief, you can swim immediately after eating. The pool has no idea whether you ate or not, so as long as you don’t pee in the pool, no one will ever know if you go swimming immediately after eating. Do it. This is a prequel to the book No one knows if you pee in the pool.
Title: Grown ups Throw up too
Synopsis: Grown ups puke, but it isn’t for the same reasons you do. When mommy drinks too much vodka and daddy drinks too much bourbon, they end up with upset tummies. You will notice this trend occur on Friday and Saturday nights. It may also be a reason you and your brother get to watch whatever you want the morning after New Years Eve.
Title: Turn that frown upside down
Synopsis: How frowning all your life really won’t make your face get stuck that way.
Title: The lamest game
Synopsis: There is no such thing as the quiet game. It’s just a way to get you to be quiet. The only winner is the adult who convinces you there’s a prize. Demand something fun for a prize or refuse to play.
Title: Nighttime is the right time
Synopsis: What really happens after you go to sleep. Yes, it’s fun and yes, you would like it.
That’s all I have for now. I’m sure you all can think of other titles for children’s storybooks that will never make it to publication. Feel free to share those with me, but please know I may steal them and make my fortune off your idea. At least I’m honest (about telling you I will steal. Not about stealing. I will totally steal your idea).
And now I’m going to go find some kid’s dreams to crush and then steal candy from a baby, mostly because WHO GIVES CANDY TO A BABY?! Probably someone who would read these books to their kids.