Friday, October 13, 2006

Et tu, Foo Foo?

Before WCB was born, someone gave us a little storybook version of "This Little Piggy." I noticed that several lines had been changed to make the rhyme more pleasant. Instead of

This little piggy had roast beef
This little piggy had none

it now reads

This little piggy had cookies (as not to offend vegetarians)
This little piggy had fun (as not to offend non-vegetarians)

I always read it the "right" way in protest. Cookies, my eye. This morning, I discovered that's not the only rhyme that's been sanitized for our protection. WCB and I attended a baby music class and witnessed the most bizarre interpretation of "Little Bunny Foo Foo" I've ever heard.

For those of you who didn't attend Brownie camp in the early '80s, "Little Bunny Foo Foo" goes like this:

Little Bunny Foo Foo hopping through the forest
Scoopin' up the field mice, and boppin' 'em on the head
Down came the good fairy, and she said,
"Little Bunny Foo Foo, I don't want to see you
Scoopin' up the field mice and boppin' 'em on the head
I'll give you three chances, and then I'll turn you into a goon."

The song repeats with good-for-nothing Bunny Foo Foo wasting his three chances, until -- poof! -- the good fairy turns him into a goon. The song ends with a delicious pun: "The moral of the story is ... hare today, goon tomorrow!" Needless to say, this was one of my favorite songs EVER.

Today's version, however, eliminated the good fairy and had Bunny Foo Foo's parents very un-poetically putting him in time out and telling him to think about the bad choice that he made to hit the field mouse. Bunny Foo Foo then realizes that hitting is wrong and that he should use words instead. He apologizes to the field mouse who then forgives him and the two play happily together.

I'm not making this up. I can't make this stuff up.

"Hare today, carefully considering the consequences of my actions and coming to the realization that violence -- in all its forms -- is wrong and detrimental to my relationships with mice" just doesn't have the same ring.


Karen's sister said...

You must, MUST put the words to the new version on the site. I can't even imagine how you sing that!

amanda said...

That is just too much, although it's not surprising. What kills me is that is culturally OK to sell little kids Bratz mini-prostitutes (oh, I meant Dollz) but the nursery rhymes are being sanitized.

Craziness, I tell you.

tk said...

I so love that song! I sang it to all my kids...did the hand motions too, where you smack your fist at "boppin' em on the head." My kids are grown up now, and while they are certainly not perfect, they are not arrests for assault or domestic violence anyway.

Lizard Eater said...

Wow. I'd heard "bopping" exchanged with "kissing" em on the head, but that takes it to a whole new level.

We have "Goodnight, Moon," (a video of stories, not the book -- very good, I highly recommend it, and they run it on HBO a lot) and they do Mercer Mayer's "There's a Nightmare in My Closet." But the little boy no longer shoots the nightmare with his popgun. Now, he nudges him with his toy sword and say, "I got him" (rather than "shot" him). Eh, that change isn't a big deal, in my book.

But that version of Bunny Foo-Foo ...

Q: Did we enjoy medical shows like House more or less, back when we couldn't identify the medical equipment, understand some of the lingo, etc?