07 January 2008

Bindi the jungle girl

Okay, I admit it. I was (am) a fan of Steve Irwin the Crocodile Hunter. I know he was a geek, but he was such an entertaining geek. I spent several New Year's Eves watching the 24-hour Crocodile Hunter marathons. Animal Planet and Discovery channel (and maybe the History channel) are the only things I miss about television. Although I thought Project Runway was sort of interesting when I watched it in Las Vegas at my daughter's house.

Anyway, I do not know where Steve Irwin fell on the scale of actually doing good things for the sake of the planet, but he had lots of passion that I do not think was only geared towards making money. I think he was truly moved to work for the welfare of the world and everything in it, particularly animals that most people want to exterminate.

Maybe I am naive, but I liked watching him blunder about in his all-out, wild disdain-for-pain frenzy, finding one more "gorgeous" animal for us to see...

Today I read about his daughter, Bindi. I do not know exactly what I think about her stepping up to the plate in her father's name. I think it is hard for me to disengage the loss of a father with how I react to this story. Thinking about losing a father at such a young age makes me a bit shaky and weepy anyway. It is hard enough when you are 50...

If it is true, as her mother states, that Bindi loves doing this and that if Bindi decided one day that it was not fun any more she would stop doing it, then I think it is okay. Maybe.

Child stars usually make me uncomfortable - or rather the making of child stars makes me uncomfortable. I worry that they do not get the chance to just be kids. Not knowing what goes into all the filming for Bindi's or any other child star's performances, I cannot even begin to evaluate her mother's claims that Bindi is fine, loves what she's doing and all will be well.

The strangest complaint in the NY Times story is the one that people are making about being weirded out by Steve Irwin clips interspersed throughout the show. That does not bother me at all. If my father had left me a legacy, and if I were stepping in to continue it, and if there were film clips of him doing it, you can bet your ass that I would show the clips too.

Do people hold it against the local merchant when they proudly display photographs of the three generations of family who have owned and operated the hardware store? Or use home movies in the television advertisements for those businesses?

Then again, I may just still be enamored of out-and-out audacity of Steve Irwin. Crikey!


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