A few weeks ago, we noticed that our boys kept saying "Pee Wee Sherman" in this weird voice and then laughing in an even stranger way.  "Pee Wee Sherman... Pee Wee Sherman... huh huh... huh huh..." they would say over and over.  We didn't know who or what "Pee Wee Sherman" was but the kids thought he was hysterical.  I tried to ignore it for a couple of days, until it became so obnoxious, I couldn't take it any longer.  
Me:  "Who is Pee Wee Sherman, you guys? This is driving me crazy!"  
Boys:  "He's someone Wyatt told us about. He laughs like this and does this dance and..."
Me: "Oh, do you mean Pee Wee HERMAN?"

Boys: "No, Pee Wee SHERMAN."
Me:  I'm pretty sure, you mean Pee Wee HERMAN.  (I proceed to to do a really bad Pee Wee Herman impersonation.)
Boys:  Yeah, that's Pee Wee SHERMAN.
Me: No, you mean, Pee Wee HERMAN.
Boys:  Who's Pee Wee Herman?
It went on like this for quite awhile until the boys reluctantly conceded that their beloved Pee Wee Sherman and my creepy Pee Wee Herman must be the same person indeed.

Pee Wee Herman aka Pee Wee Sherman

I was going to show them a Pee Wee [S]Herman movie until I watched one of the trailers and then I remembered, those movies are straight up weird.  Pee Wee isn't funny.  He's creepy.  This may or may not have something do with my own perception of Paul Reubens as an actor. Or maybe there is just something about a pale faced grown man riding a bike and acting like a rude little kid that I find strange and unfunny.

This past year, we have been showing the kids movies that we loved as children.  A good movie will always be entertaining. Some of the successes have been Flight of the Navigator, The Journey of Natty Gann, E.T., Back to the Future, Home Alone, The Princess Bride, Annie, and Star Wars.

In doing this I have also discovered there are many movies from my own childhood that I can't believe my parents ever let us watch.  (I don't think they were bad people, I just think we all didn't know any better back then.)  These weren't movies we just watched one time, but over and over and over and OVER again. These are the movies that are so ingrained in me that they are synonymous with memories from my childhood.  Let's just say it's interesting how much goes over your head when you are so innocent.

Keep in my mind, my kids are young.  (My oldest is 7.) So, my list might be a little different from yours.  In addition to Pee Wee's Big Adventure, here is a list of movies from my childhood that I will *probably* never show my children.

1. Spaceballs.  I saw Spaceballs before I ever saw Star Wars.  When I finally did see Star Wars, at the age of 18, all I could think about was Spaceballs while I was watching it.  I viewed it once as an adult and I couldn't get over all the sexual innuendo.  The captain even has this raunchy scene in bed with these twins. Then there is the use of the F word in a major scene at the end. What were my parents thinking letting little kids watch this?? (I love you Mom and Dad!)

Pizza the Hutt is one of the scariest creatures ever created on film. *shudder*

2. Short Circuit.  This was one of my all time favorite movies as a kid.  I watch it now and all I see is a rude robot who cusses and womanizes.  Really funny, not.

Number 5 hitting on Alley Sheedy for the umpteenth time.

3. Back to the Beach. This was my family's Princess Bride back in the day.  We watched it more times than I can count, DAILY. Would I show this to my kids? No way.  Too many skimpy bathing suits, sexual innuendo and did I mention the super skanky bathing suits?  That whole scene with Bob Denver and the breathy, barely dressed, bimbo, is uncomfortable.  Plus, Pee Wee Herman makes an appearance carried in on a surfboard.  While I still think this movie is hilarious (That "Does Dolly Parton float?" part still makes me laugh.), it's not the type of thing I want to share with my 7 year old son at the moment.

Get a room, Gilligan!

4. Little Shop of Horrors.  I'm not saying this is a bad movie, just one that isn't appropriate for little kids to watch. (Can't imagine why since the title has the word Horrors in it.) Yet for some strange reason I remember watching this as a little kid many times. My own children know the music, so they actually beg me a lot to watch it.  I refuse.  While I actually really love this movie, it's way too creepy and dark for little kids. That hasn't stopped me from telling them the story... as a bedtime story... in the dark... with a flashlight pressed up against my face... to FREAK them out!  [Insert maniacal laugh here.]

5.  Jurassic Park. I actually did show this to the kids and now I totally regret it. We were in a hotel room and it was on television. They still talk about how scary it was.  Sorry kids!


  1. Saw Little Shop on TV one weekend.....thought I'd show a little bit to Emma. Look - mommy did this show in college. She was the funny blonde lady.


  2. OH man, I remember Back to the Beach SO WELL..."My little hunny, my little baby, my little hunny bunny(say it with your lips sticking way out and a low voice). I really like that movie. (I mean, *liked*). Jurassic Park scared me when I saw it when it first came out and I was in high school!

  3. I think about this all of the time when I re-watch a movie that I saw as a kid. I'm constantly like, "That is so inappropriate!!!" It's interesting that we are so much more cautious now. My parents did a great job, what has changed? More "awareness"? Hard to think they weren't aware of violence and extreme innuendos being unfit for little eyes and ears. So strange, I just don't think anyone gave it much thought! I guess we all turned out ok, but I'm with you. My kids won't be watching many of my childhood "classics." -Devin

  4. Cristin, your writing is so awesome. How do you find the time to write all this? I envy your amazing talents. :) -Amy Barnes



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