Saturday, September 17, 2011
The Invisible Man?
I recently had a nightmare where I ran out of things to write about in my blog and I resorted to writing about Jon and Kate Gosselin. I woke up sweating, and then saw the source of my nightmare—a copy of People. I must have spotted it on my wife’s nightstand before falling asleep. On the cover was Kate and her eight lovely children…but where was Jon?
I never really watched Jon and Kate Plus 8, but my wife once tried to get me hooked.
“Look how cute those kids are,” she said. “And the one with glasses is named Collin."
Our son is named Colin, with only one “l” in the spelling. “Yeah, the kids are cute as puppies, but that isn’t all I see.”
After a few minutes my wife asked, “So what do you see?”
“I think Jon really hates this,” I answered, “and I think he hates Kate, too.”
“Why do you say that?” she asked.
“Just look at their body language while they’re being filmed on that couch.”
“It isn’t a couch. It’s a loveseat.”
“There isn’t much love from what I see. You have to work pretty hard to not touch when you’re sitting that close together. And why is she saying all of those terrible things about him?”
“He doesn’t help out around the house very much,” she said.
My cue to get up and leave the room.
I’ve since picked up a bit more information about this couple. I understand that Jon has always had a hard time standing up to Kate, saying “N-O” to her. They went through a messy divorce a couple of years ago and Kate has gone Hollywood, which explains why I see her face everywhere. This brings me to my irritation over that People cover. The caption reads: After six rocky years on TV, Kate and her kids face an uncertain future. “I’m really scared,” says Kate. Jon isn’t quoted. He’s barely mentioned in the People article.
From what my wife tells me, Jon sort of went off the deep end after the breakup and tried to be a party animal after separating from Kate. From what I’ve seen and read about her, I think I’d be partying if I’d suddenly been cut loose from her. But does he deserve to be wiped out as if he never existed, like those unfortunate men standing between Lenin and Stalin in doctored Soviet photographs? Jon was an integral part of that show for all but the last season, which was a ratings flop. Kate Plus 8 premiered without Jon and was pulled after only one season.
I don’t know Jon Gosselin who obviously has some growing up to do (who doesn’t) but he is the father of those kids and I’ve no reason to doubt he loves them and, like Kate, is equally concerned about their future. I have an axe to grind when it comes to deadbeat dads who, unlike Jon, don’t trouble themselves with pesky child support, but I also have a hard time with parents like Kate who exploit their children for personal gain. Programs like Toddlers and Tiaras turn my stomach. I’m sure Jon is doing everything in his capacity to provide for his children, even though his attention addicted ex has spoiled them with a lavish lifestyle few could afford.
So Jon, stand up and be counted, not in front of cameras but in the eyes of your children. Don’t disappoint me for defending you, and more important—don’t disappoint your children. The upside of your failing to do so might send you to Hollywood instead of Kate, as the lead in the next remake of The Invisible Man.
Posted by Stephen Hayes