Friday, July 13, 2012

What My Family Learned from the Andy Griffith Show - Part 1

Image Credit: Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

It was a sad day at my house a few weeks ago when Andy Griffith passed away.  Little Man was especially affected by Andy's death.  I know.  It's weird that a little kid in this day and age would be affected by the death of someone who played Matlock, right?  I mean, Andy Griffith's shows aren't exactly hits with the young people these days.  But after almost a year of watching at least 2 episodes of the Andy Griffith Show EVERY SINGLE DAY,  Little Man feels like he knows the characters personally.  He has invested in each character and storyline, paying attention to little details that make each town resident unique and loveable (or not so loveable...he thinks Ernest T. Bass is the most annoying man in the world).  

Of course he completely identifies with Opie (Ron Howard), which is the reason he started watching the show in the first place.  Someone once told him he looks like Opie, so he wanted to find out who Opie was.  We found the Andy Griffith Show on Netflix and introduced Little Man to Mayberry and the rest is, well...history.  One episode of Andy Grifffith and my son was hooked.  He is now a certified Mayberry "junkie" who can't make it a day without at least an hour of his favorite show. 

He loves it so much he wants to move to Mayberry when he grows up and buy Floyd's Barbershop and eat ice cream at Walker's Drug Store.  He wants to fill up his gas tank at Wally's Filling Station and sit out in front of the Courthouse with a soda and watch the people drive by.   I kind of half heartedly tried to explain one day that Mayberry has almost certainly changed since the show was made so many years ago, but part of me wondered if maybe it would be better to let him have his dream.  I love that my child is still innocent enough to think that Mayberry would remain the same town that it was 60 years ago.  I love he recognizes and seeks out the simple morals and values that existed on the Andy Griffith show and in small town America during that era.  And I absolutely adore the fact that he aspires to be a successful and prosperous member of such a community some day.

We've learned a lot about ourselves and each other while watching the show.  It sounds stupid to say that, but it's true!  The other day while we were talking about Andy's passing, we started talking about our favorite episodes and why we liked that particular show.  It was really interesting to hear the things my kids picked up on and how what they saw and heard impacted them.  I'll have to write another post about the lessons my family has learned while watching The Andy Griffith Show.  Like how EVERYONE has a Barney Fife in his/her life.  You know it's true!  You are thinking about that person right now and nodding your head.  "Oh my gosh!" you are exclaiming in surprise. "You're right, Geri!  I DO have a Barney Fife in my life!"  I know you do.  We all do. I'll elaborate more on the next post.  In the meantime, I'm gonna follow Andy's example and take my son fishing.  Rest in Peace, Andy Griffith.    


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