Various Writings

Various Writings

A few quiet rants, commentaries, and interviews.

Marketplace Feature: Christie Mellor Commentary

Victims of Childproofing Commentary heard on National Public Radio’s Marketplace:  Transcript: I was at a dinner party, at the home of another couple with children. I made a quick visit to the bathroom. I came back just as quickly, and tried to explain to my hostess delicately—yet–with some urgency–that I could not unlock . . . the toilet seat. After that awkward rescue, I dropped into the kitchen for a drink. That’s when I noticed the weird covers on every doorknob, rendering them useless to all but the most sober grownups. The napkin drawer was locked. So was the flatware drawer. The drawer that holds the rubber bands? Locked. Industrial rubber siding adorned the Noguchi coffee table, Unsightly gray foam edged the entire mid-century dining room. Fashion statement? No. These seemingly intelligent–and formerly stylish friends–had fallen victim to the Child-Proofing industry, which preys upon the fears of the conscientious parent. Fear is big business. The end result: wasted money, very silly looking furniture, and at least one embarrassed guest doing a little dance in the bathroom. Now, honestly, think this through a minute before you throw away your hard-earned cash: Are you really worried that your child is going to slice an artery on the jagged edge of the plastic wrap? Is he really in danger of impaling himself on a butter knife? Has it occurred to you people how much money you could save if you simply said “no” to your child? You could purchase a set of those hideous table bumpers for $31.95, or you could simply instruct your child not to run headlong into the coffee... read more

Hometown Girl Makes Good!

From the San Francisco Chronicle: Rockin’ with Kids Erika Milvy Published 4:00 am, Sunday, March 18, 2007 The value of mixing booze and babies was memorably extolled by San Francisco native Christie Mellor, who coined the term “The Three-Martini Playdate.” Her 2004 book mocks uber-moms and micromanaged childhoods and extols the virtues of hands-off, absentee parenting. In Bay Area parlance, Mellor’s message is, essentially: Put down the homemade play dough and the sugar-free millet birthday cake and pick up a stiff drink. In chapters with titles such as “Children’s Birthday Parties: Not Just for Children!” and “Children’s Music: Why?,” Mellor’s snarky musings suggest that there must be a better way. But the children’s hour and the cocktail hour need not be mutually exclusive. Around the country and around the Bay Area, nightclubs are hopping before bedtime to accommodate tykes and tipplers. Hip Mamas and Alternadads — with AC/DC onesies on their kids and “Confessions of a Slacker Mom” paperbacks in their Petunia Pickle Bottom diaper bags — are taking back the night. The combination of cool, urban adults venturing into parenthood at later and later ages, the rise of children as a cottage industry and the emergence of an entirely palatable genre of family music (a.k.a. kiddie rock or alt kid music), has created a supply and a demand for adult-friendly kid activities, safe but not uncool spaces where young and old are free to be either young or old. Somewhat big name (in the kids’ music scene) Ralph Colvert (a.k.a. Ralph’s World) recently played a gig at 10:30 in the morning at the Fillmore, as part of his nationwide... read more