Toddlers, Tiaras and TaviPosted: September 9, 2011
It rained for two straight days this week at the Open so instead of watching my boyfriend stomp around the court like a bull, I’ve been forced to entertain myself in other ways. Somehow all this free time didn’t convert itself into productivity. Far from it. Instead it manifested in a mini marathon of Toddlers and Tiaras. (Don’t hate me—hate the weather in New York or—preferably—hate the parents of these little terrors.)
I cannot find a single redeeming thing about this show. The children are freaky. The parents are overbearing, desperate and deeply disturbed. I mean, really, what part of investing time and energy into parading your small child in makeup and inappropriately adult Dynasty dresses doesn’t cry out for serious time in a shrink’s office? I had resisted T and T when it debuted because I had a more than mild obsession with the whole JonBenet Ramsay thing and figured I had already visited this topic ad nauseum. Apparently I underestimate my capacity for schlock.
I somehow pulled myself away from the Cars and Stars pageant in Indianapolis and turned my attention to the Internet where the now teenaged blogger and fashion world castoff Tavi Gevison debuted her “magazine” Rookie. To have the audacity to call Rookie a magazine is beyond grandiose. It is a blog. By a 15-year-old. Modeled on a magazine popular in the 90’s. It is also a blog that is basically a teenage girl’s take on a decade during which she mostly wore diapers. It is quite boring and unoriginal, yet the New York Times Magazine profiled Tavi and Rookie last Sunday and according to the NYT Tavi, who was originally supposed to do a reboot of Sassy with its founder Jane Pratt, instead parted ways with Pratt upon the advice of This American Life’s Ira Glass and his nosy parker wife because they were looking out for Tavi’s best interests. Someone should have looked out for this kid a long time ago and left her in school instead of allowing her teeny granny self to sit in the front row at haute couture shows.
After the announcement about the new version of Sassy there was a flurry of cloying expectation and requisite anticipatory press. So what happens next? Is it a magazine? Is it great? No. And double no. It is, however, a lot like Sassy in that it takes all of its cues from grunge rock and phony teen angst (don’t hate on other girls—love them!) In fact if I were Jane Pratt I just might be peeved at the potential Eve Harrington storyline here. Peeved enough to call old Ira Glass up and give him a piece of my mind anyway. Maybe he would put me on This American Life and I’d kill two life goals with one vitriolic phone call.
Toddlers and Tiaras and Tavi all share what I see as the “my kid is mediocre/not that cute/a terrible athlete yet I’m going to tell her she shits sparkly rainbows” syndrome. If you’ve ever been to a Little League game or a toddler pageant you know what I’m talking about. Everyone gets a fucking medal or a crown. The winners get a slightly bigger, gaudier prize, but no one is left out. How the hell will these children ever figure out that they are C students at best? That’s just it. They never will. They will continue to blow their own horns and shoot fairy dust out of their asses until they get their own reality series like the Kardashians and make kajillions of dollars, pointing their fingers at me and laughing all the way to the bank as they pass me by in my pauper’s cocoon of good taste and judgment retirement home.
Well, at least I got one good idea out of the rain delays. I’ll call it Crabby Acres: A rest home for those with discriminating taste.
Thanks God it stopped raining in New York and I can go back to watching real athletes compete for one trophy and one prize at the US Open. VAMOS RAFA!