Asking the Turtle to Fly

Much has been said about this year’s Super Bowl halftime show.  I have friends that have expressed opinions on it from both angles.

Some defend the show, with lots of good arguments on why and how it was an inspiring and visionary form of entertainment, particularly when taken in cultural context.

Many others hold the stance that condemn the event, pointing to both the lack of clothing on the dancers and the not-your-typical soccer mom moves that 40+ J-Lo and Shakira displayed on the stage, complete with non-approved props.

To be honest, I watched a total of about 30 seconds of the halftime show.  Once, for about 20 seconds, and another time passing back through the room that had it going on the TV.  The oldest two kids were at a church Super Bowl event, my youngest son was upstairs playing basketball in his room (the sound from downstairs is unmistakable – it is akin to rhinoceroses playing hopscotch above you), and my wife was in and out of the room as well.

So, while I have seen enough to know what’s being talked about, I can’t really weigh in as an expert on the halftime show.

But, I still have a recommendation to offer.

My remote has a few features that those of you that are upset over the show may want to look into for your own future viewing experiences.  As a PSA, I thought I would share.

mute1 – Mute.  This button makes it possible to see what’s on TV, but not hear what’s being said.  We have used this to hear a kid call out from another part of the house or avoid a word or phrase that we don’t want the kids to hear.  (This was also handy when Joe Morgan and Tim McCarver were being used on postseason baseball broadcasts.  I don’t need it as long as they keep Smoltz and A-Rod around.)


pause2 – Pause.  This button stops what’s currently being played dead in its tracks.  It works for the DVD player, the DVR, or nowadays – even live TV (amazing!).  We do this sometimes when we are watching a show or movie that may not be appropriate for the 12-year old to see and he’s walking through the living room to the kitchen.  When you hit it a second time, the show re-starts at the exact moment from where you stopped it.


channel3 – Several buttons to choose from here, but they all will turn the channel.  Either through a “Guide” button to choose a new channel, or just “up” or “down” arrows to immediately click to something different.  While pretty obvious, I normally use this when I no longer want to watch what’s currently on the TV, but still do want to watch something.


power4 – Power.  This actually turns the entire TV off.  I use this when I no longer want the TV to be on.  Pretty self-explanatory.



I know, the huge surprise here is that this section is dripping with sarcasm.  But, here’s my diabolical scheme behind it.

Stop holding others responsible for what you pour into your life (or your children’s lives).

You stomp around, outraged over the scantily-clad females in Sunday’s show.  But, then let your 12-year old son have the Swimsuit issue from Sports Illustrated.

You take a shocking breath over the dance moves used on stage at halftime, but you don’t blink an eye at the basketball game while you embarrass yourself screaming, red-faced at officials.

You sanctimoniously express your disgust at someone not standing during the National Anthem, but are you so dedicated to your patriotism that you get up off the couch at home when it comes on?

I am protective of what my kids hear, see, and experience.  But, I cannot guarantee that they won’t hear profanity out in public, see something sexual in nature on TV, or experience something that they are too young for.  I can only do my best to shelter them as much as possible, and use the rest as teachable moments.

By placing that responsibility on those that put things on TV or in front of us in any form, I’m asking someone to perform a task that they aren’t designed for.  I wouldn’t ask the cashier at a convenience store to pull my wisdom teeth.  I wouldn’t call the barber shop and ask if they could send a guy out to check out a leaky faucet.  Nor would I take my daughter’s pet turtle out of his cage and onto the top of the house expecting him to fly when I toss him over the side of the roof.


It’s not the NFL’s job to put a halftime show on that I approve of.  It’s my job to make sure my 12-year old doesn’t see it if it doesn’t meet my standards.

Instead of grabbing our phones to express outrage, I recommend we just study up on the buttons on the remote and do our jobs as parents.


I have no greater joy than this: to hear that my children are walking in the truth.
– 3 John 1:4



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