What’s the Moral of the Story?

Hudson handed me a mini Disney board book to read to him. It’s a simple story told in 10 pages: Mickey Mouse is excited that it’s snowing and decides to go ice skating. Then he gets disappointed at the store when there are no more skates to buy. Luckily Minnie Mouse is outside making snow angels and invites him to play.

Donald Duck joins them and they build a snowman… but Mickey wishes he had skates.

Now the threesome is joined by Daisy Duck and the three ducklings: Huey, Dewey and Louie. They all go sledding… but Mickey still wishes he had skates.

I think I know where this story is going. Mickey is going to snap out of his funk and realize he doesn’t need to buy skates to have fun because he’s surrounded by friends. Snowmen and sledding is so much better!

But wait…

On the next page Minnie is consoling a bummed out Mickey when Goofy suddenly swoops in with a surprise package for him. Guess what’s inside? New skates! Then the whole gang goes ice skating and Mickey is finally happy now that’s he gotten what he wanted. The End.

Okay, I love Disney and I’m not one who would ban a book, least of all a little toddler board book. But isn’t it funny that instead of taking an opportunity to teach a lesson – for instance, “money doesn’t buy happiness” – they went the opposite way? Attention children: When you don’t get what you want, pout. Don’t waste your energy being happy until you get what you deserve because if you wait long enough someone will magically hand you what it is you’ve been wanting.

The book I’m looking forward to reading to Hudson is Aliens Love Underpants! It’s a colorful story told in fun rhyme about some friendly aliens who come to earth because of the underpants. I’ve heard this is a great companion to toilet training because it encourages toddlers to see the perk of peeing in the potty: big boy/girl underwear! I’ve just bought Hudson a potty seat and pull-ups. If this book is going to make this process easier then I’m all for it. Whether it has a moral or not.

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