Let me preface this weeks fuckwitterage by saying that Returned Servicemen's Clubs (RSL) and many other sporting or association clubs in Australia are generally more than just pubs. They have restaurants, gyms, swimming pools (where children can take lessons), creches and sporting fields. Some even have hotels . . water parks and more. Many have auditoriums for concerts, cabarets and schools events. Even if you live beyond the black stump, pubs and RSLs are the hub of the community and most pubs, thanks to the lovely weather have outside rooms or beer gardens where children are welcome. Gaming rooms are always separate to the main areas and children under 18 years of age are not permitted in or near public bars, only in the beer garden (until 7pm) or family friendly restaurants associated with said pub or club. All encourage families, particularly in their restaurants and beer gardens which are valuable sources of extra revenue.
Now I'm not sure about the US, but Britain and Australia have a childhood institution . . . a TV show named Playschool that's been viewing as long as television's been alive. All our kids have grown up with Jemima and Big Ted, the theme song "There's a Bear in There . ." and "I think today, we'll look through the square window! " one of three (triangle, square and round).
I remember taking my kids to live Playschool concerts when the Wiggles were still wetting their pants. They were marvellous. The yummy mummies sat in the background and nattered about the pros and cons of breastfeeding and whether Dr Spock may have had a point or whether Dr Chris Green had it right with Toddler Taming. The kids formed an undersized mosh pit and huddled around the stage to enjoy their favourite TV personalities, puppets, stories and crafts absolutely OBLIVIOUS to everything else around them. Most concerts are held in community theatres or centres but sometimes . . these are simply not available . . Now here's where the total fuckwittery comes in:
The ABC (Australian Broadcasting Commission) our national broadcaster, has staged Play School concerts in pubs and clubs for eight years, but now there is a rising voice of criticism that the public broadcaster is endorsing gambling and drinking. Damn those bananas in pyjamas if they hadn't chased teddy bears down the stairs in a drunken stupor and caused an OH&S nightmare, everything would have been just fine!
The ABC has released a statement saying if the Corporation did not book such venues, children in some areas would simply miss out. And it says the performances, featuring characters like Little Ted and Jemima, in pubs and clubs are held away from the gambling areas. The issue of pokie machines and drinking in the same venues as Play School concerts came up in Senate Estimates this week. The Greens have asked for more information about the ABC's association with Kids Promotion (well they always do because procrastination is their motto).
Play School presenters and characters feature in the live interactive 40-minute shows performed for young children.
Glenys Stradijot (Taa-daaaaaa! -I think it even rhymes with 'idiot', yep, she's the FUCKWIT!) from the lobby group Friends of the ABC, says holding Play School in venues such as pubs is exposing children to gambling and alcohol. "We think it is entirely inappropriate for the public broadcaster to be enticing people into businesses of any kind, let alone gambling and establishments that are selling alcohol," she said. "What this is doing is introducing children to the environment of gambling and alcohol establishments at an age before they are too young to determine themselves whether or not that is an appropriate place for them to be." - Gee, she's pretty cool at syntax and sentence structure as well!
For fuck's sakes Glenys, they're too young to stick a pea up their nose - well maybe not - but they're certainly too young to know what a pub or club or pokie or drunk is . . .ever seen a two year old on a sugar rush? They make drunks and crack addicts look laid back!
The ABC made a statement saying if it did not book pubs and clubs in some suburbs and towns in New South Wales, children in those areas would miss out. The broadcaster says the entertainment venue is clearly separated from the gaming activities of the clubs. The ABC also says it has not received a complaint about the suitability of these places in the eight years of touring its shows.
So stick that in your politically correct and killjoy pipe and smoke it Ms Glenys - you're officially a Friday Fuckwit . . .
Little bit of personal triv . . the Playschool CD was the first I ever bought in anticipation of the birth of my first baby! Sad, I know.