As I sat down to write this post, the wise words of the big hair band of the 80s, Great White, are humming through my mind, "My, my, my, You're Once Bitten, Twice Shy, Babe."
I wish they would have been a few months ago when I rather ignorantly introduced my youngest son Rolan to Thomas the Train. Now, as I'm sure you already know, my oldest boy Ridge has taken his fascination with Thomas into obsession. I'm sure if he was old enough to have his own means of transportation and actually realized that The Day Out with Thomas that comes annually to Oklahoma City's Railway Museum traveled from city to city, he'd drop out of Rainbow Lane and follow it around like some stoned Dead Head. He knows each little train by heart, even the ones that are the exact same color and look virtually identical to one another except for their length of funnels or some such shit. The Thomas bug bit Ridge when he was about 2 and that cheeky train has been ruining my life ever since.
Because of that, you would think I would have had the fucking foresight not to introduce this Jedi mind-controlling hogwash to the little one. Clearly, I'm like kid who repeatedly sticks her hand in fire or poor dog who runs smack dab into the glass door over and over and over. I just never learn.
So now, just when Ridge's junkie addiction to Thomas finally appeared on the verge of being overcome, Rolan is waking up each morning, demanding Thomas be turned on through the magical genius of the DVR, thus giving Ridge a daily fucking reminder of just how much he still really, really loves Thomas. Instead of one boy making forceful requests as though I'm some hostage negotiator and he's got 10 kidnapped bystanders who can only be saved if the ransom of a Thomas showing is met, I have two.
For a while, I thought I had solved the Thomas crisis through the miraculous hands of YouTube. With Ridge old enough to run a mean mouse pad, I would put the boys in front of the computer, pull up YouTube, type in Thomas the Train and let them go to town. With the similar videos listed on the bottom right of the screen, Ridge just click away, buying me much needed house cleaning time while they watched an endless sea of Thomas videos. But then one day the title of one caught my eye as I walked by, picking up toys that were no doubt Thomas related. It was, "Gordon Kills Thomas," or something along those line. Yeah, apparently some asshole has made a whole collection of videos based on the series with a twist of The Shining or some other sadistic nightmare that 4-year-olds and 2-year-olds don't need to be watching, unless of course you are just wanting them to never sleep again, in which case, bombs away. I wanted to write this dude a nasty note along the lines of, "Thanks for screwing up my sweet thing, you sick bastard," but then I remembered that he's some nut job who apparently thinks turning beloved childhood icons into serial killers is hilarious. In an attempt to not end up as some sickos skin dress or cooked in their fat lady stew, I decided to withhold from the letter and just bitch about him here for the whole Internet to read. I think that's a much safer plan, don't you?
So, after the YouTube solution turned out not to be a solution after all, I had to let the boys start watching Thomas the old-fashioned way again, on the television. And as if my plight of Thomas mania wasn't bad enough, those assholes behind the PBS series have introduced a whole new handful of trains in this season's episodes. That means each time Ridge sees one of these new pricks during his daily Thomas fix, he immediately starts chanting, "Walmart! Walmart!" at the top of his lungs. He's not going to rest until we have each and every member of the Thomas fleet, which not only includes about a million rather similar trains, but also a bus, a traction engine (that's a tractor to us Americans), a helicopter and now a freakin' jet plane named Jeremy. Ridge's new partner in his bloody rebel coup, the formerly darling Rolan, is right beside him, pounding his tiny fists to the table, as he follows his brother's call to arms.
So, I just wish I would have heard The Great White song two months ago. Perhaps it would have sparked my one remaining brain cell into having a thought, which might have then lead to preventing this catastrophe. We already go through $20 a month in batteries just keeping the Thomas and Friends buzzing around the tracks scattered through our house. Will it be $40 this time next year? Perhaps $80? Who knows. Just heed my warnings, Readers, do NOT let your children watch this devilish nightmare or you, too, will be fighting this losing battle .