Joe watches a lot of TV. And a lot of YouTube videos. I know people, parents, worry about screen time, but I never really have. (And this article suggests that maybe you shouldn’t either.) One of the reasons I don’t worry about Joe, is that he isn’t a passive consumer. He watches something and immediately becomes inspired.
A couple of weeks ago, we watched First Position, a Netflix documentary about a ballet competition. Within about five minutes, Joe was off the sofa, leaping, practising pirouettes, asking for more information about the countries the competitors had come from, the clothes they were wearing, the competition itself, New York (where the competition was held), ballet in general. It means that we never get to just sit and watch a film quietly, but that seems like a small price to pay when his imagination and inquisitiveness are firing.
But that was nothing compared to how fired up he got when he watched I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead, about superstar DJ Steve Aoki. I’d started watching it without him, but I knew he’d love it, so I stopped it and put it on again for him. (It’s got some language, but I figured inspiration was more important than worrying about him hearing swear words he’s already heard.) And he loved it just as much as I thought he would:
He went on to perform his own DJ show – in my bedroom – with pre-show nerves, an audience, fan selfies, security, drum machine, lighting, a stage invasion, even a pretend bottle of champagne to shake up and over the crowd in the manner of Steve Aoki himself. (Even Joe realised that crowd-surfing in an inflatable dinghy was a bit beyond our capabilities, thank god.) You can read all about it on my Twitter thread.
Everything has the potential to inspire. Everything is educational. And often it’s also pretty entertaining.