I am not a huge believer in having celebrities as role models for our children, especially professional athletes but I did find something a little troublesome today on my way into work. Being responsible for the well being of four children, two of them entering high school, puts things into a different perspective than for someone who has no children, or has children too young to be influenced by celebs. So anyway, I was driving into work listening to some morning sports talk radio and they mentioned a poll that was done about month ago “Name your favorite male athlete”. The list included Peyton Manning, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Lebron James and some others that really didn’t make too much of an impact on me but then the mentioned who #1 and #2 were and it took me by surprise and then made me think about what kind of people we as fans are idolizing and introducing our children to.
There was a tie for first between Tiger Woods and Kobe Bryant, second place belonged to Derek Jeter. For those who have short memories, don’t follow sports or live under a rock Kobe Bryant was accused of raping a woman a few years ago in Denver and to prove his innocence he bought his wife a $4 million diamond ring and Tiger Woods has slept with so many women not named Mrs. Tiger Woods he can’t even afford to keep them quiet. Derek Jeter on the other hand is engaged, has never been married, never been involved in a sex scandal, never had to make a public apology for anything other than not winning the World Series and from all accounts is a genuinely nice human being.
This also brings to mind the fact that shows like “Secret Life of the American Teenager” and pretty much anything on MTV these days. Now again, don’t get me wrong I won’t be in line for sainthood when I die but I am no longer a kid and look at all of these things differently. In case you haven’t seen or heard anything about this show the crux of it is that all of these kids are having sex or going down on each other and two of them have gotten pregnant (one last year and one this year). Justine loves this show and Tami watches it when we have it on our DVR and I may sound a bit up and down about it but I am glad they do because we sit and watch it with them and answer any questions and be sure to point out anything that would not happen in real life when it’s on screen.
For those of you who don’t have teenage kids yet you will be here one day. You will hear a story from your teen about a friend or catch a glimpse of a show they are watching and hear the characters talking about having sex and wonder what happened to the baby that fell asleep on your chest every night.