So, I've been watching Jon & Kate + 8. It's a fascinating show on TLC giving us a peek into the daily life of the Gosselin family in Pennsylvania with a set of six-year-old twins and a set of four-year-old sextuplets. Whoa ... now there is a couple with their hands full.
Still ... as I was watching, I couldn't help thinking ... "All this on one salary?" Oh common ... they couldn't have paid for that elaborate Disney vacation ... or that skiing trip ... or the trips to Dutch Wonderland and the Crayola Factory and Hersey's Chocolate World and ... and the list goes on. What we're seeing is product placement on steroids.
I'm not denying them their right to earn a living ... even if it is off their kids' backs. Between the income from their TLC show, the product endorsements, and freebees, neither Jon nor Kate has to work outside the home. They have nannies and people who help with household chores like laundry and such. And you know what? Good for them. BUT ... if they want the show to continue being a success, they might want to consider treading lightly ...
Let's take the Disney vacation for example. Consider the expense of driving eight children to Disney World in Orlando. The trip itself would be a large chunk of change even if you're only looking at the basics of gas, food, and a couple of rooms at LaQuinta. But their trip was light years from basic.
The JK+8 brood stayed at the Animal Kingdom Lodge ... which is astronomically priced. They ate at Chef Mickey's ... had a private meet and greet with the princesses ... and, for me, the cherry ... make that cherries ... on top were the eight tiny sets of ears that were waiting for them on their beds ... already embroidered with their names when they arrived.
It makes for great television. But it doesn't take long to grasp the reality that they're you're no longer watching a "normal" family. There were no shots of them waiting 45 minutes to ride on Dumbo ... or shots of them getting eight Fast Passes for It's A Small World ... because those experiences no longer apply to them. They're VIPs now. Would anyone watch hour after hour of Kate doing laundry or the twins doing homework or the tups playing at the park? Maybe. Maybe not.
Still, I think I'd tune in just to watch and wait for one of Kate's infamous meltdowns. And, I suspect, if TLC took away the nannies and the personal trainers and the household help and the trips to Disney ... we might see a few more of those. And if you've seen her outburst at Toys R' Us, you know that is good television ...
See him eat from a plate
Cute cute as a button
Don't you wanna make him stay up late
And we're having fun with no money
Little smile on his face.
Don't cha' love the little baby
Don't you want to make him stay up late
Talking Heads - Stay Up Late