Wednesday, September 12, 2012

I like Honey Boo-Boo!

     When I was a sweet, young thing, I used to watch Shirley Temple Theater religiously every Saturday afternoon. It was my great escape. While all the other kids in the neighborhood were outside biking and skating and playing Barbies on their lawn, I was hunkered down inside our TV room mesmerized by this adorable little singing/dancing sensation named Shirley Temple. She had big, curly hair, cavernous dimples and a gigantic personality that just sucked me in.

     Shirley’s all grown up now, and so am I. But I have been newly sucked-in, for lack of a better description, by a 6-year-old named Alana Holler. Most people know her by her TV name, “Honey Boo-Boo.” Watching Alana on TV is like watching Shirley Temple all over again, with a little bit of trailer park thrown in. Alana hails from McIntyre, Georgia, and she loves competing in beauty pageants. She was introduced to the world through TLC’s highly controversial show, “Toddlers & Tiaras,” and she is such a stand-out character – I mean, this little girl is a nut! — she now has her own show on TLC called, "Here Comes Honey Boo-Boo."

     Now, I’m not a fan of child beauty pageants for the same reasons you probably aren’t, either. But Honey Boo-Boo is something else. Despite how some people might feel about her dysfunctional family and her beauty-pageant hobby, she is an extraordinary child – much like Shirley Temple was — with a personality too big to be contained in that 6-year-old body, and a precociousness that is beyond reason. Her mother, June, says she was born that way.

     It would be easy to cast judgment on Honey Boo-Boo and her clan. Many people have, as they are off the radar in the family arena. Her morbidly obese single mother is into extreme couponing, hoards hundreds of rolls of toilet paper and has been rumored to serve road kill for dinner. But despite the family's preference for spoiled meat, we really have no right to judge them. I’m a single mom, too, and I know how difficult it can be to be a one-man operation. Most single parents do the best they can against impossible odds, sometimes.

     I look at Honey-Boo-Boo and see a happy, joyous little girl with a gigantic appetite for life and one of the most engaging personalities I have ever seen in a child that age. Say what you want about her "redneck" family, but her controversial mother must be doing something right to have created such an exceptional child.  I see love there.  Lots of crazy love in that family.

     Bottom line: Honey Boo-Boo makes me laugh. And that’s something this single mom could do more of.

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