You are reading this on a screen. That may no surprise you. Maybe your TV? Your computer? Your phone? But, a screen. Maybe you're watching the whole episode of "Sunday Morning," or just this commentary, but either way you are watching on a screen.
I wrote this and re-wrote this with the use of my computer screen. Yes, I try to make these commentaries good. I was even late to deliver this to my producer because I was wasting time on another screen. There is even an app on my phone that lets me know how much time I've wasted on my phone. Yes, there is an app for that, too.
Screens are part of our lives. They are not going away. As a father of five young children, I sometimes feel like my main parental responsibilities include hiding the screens, turning down my children's requests for screens, and wrestling the screens away from my kids. Removing a screen from a child is nothing like taking candy from a baby; it's like ripping a banana from a hungry orangutan. The struggle is real. Less tears are shed during the opening of the movie "Up" than when I remove an iPad from my six-year-old.
Some of you might be thinking, "Jim, you look overweight but you look like a moderately intelligent guy. Why would you let your children have screens?"
Because screens are part of their lives. Their homework is on screens. A screen is where information is. A screen is where their entertainment lives. And yes, a screen is where the black hole of dangerous parental neglect lies.
It's a terrifying daily struggle.
Every night after I field the relentless requests for screens (or remove screens) from an unhappy child, I can finally relax on my screen, and read about unhappy adults.
Do as I say, not as I do.
More commentaries from Jim Gaffigan:
For more info:
Story produced by Aria Shavelson.