Children’s Television Overdose

Click to visit the Siren Stories website and read more work by J.J. Barnes and check out her latest novels.

Click to visit the Siren Stories website and read more work by J.J. Barnes and check out her latest novels.

Today my brain is turning into mush.

Last night Miss Rose refused to eat her dinner and, as she is something of a gannet, I knew something was wrong. Then she complained that her belly hurt. Then she projectile vommitted assorted curdled milk, grapes and biscuit bits across me, herself and the floor. That sealed the fate of last night’s lack of sleep and today’s overdose on children’s television.

The poor lamb crashed out on the living room floor wrapped in blankets just before 8 and, as moving her seemed unfair, and keeping her well away from Z seemed wise (because 2 of them vomming would be too much), I decided to camp out downstairs with her.

Several changes of pyjamas, several pillow cases, and assorted blankets later, Miss Rose eventally passed out for the rest of the night at around half 1. She then woke up at 430 and we started the day. And we started the binge.

Photo credit Matlachu

Photo credit Matlachu

Teletubbies. Damn you, Netflix. Who’s cockamamy idea was it to allow an endless stream of the most disturbing thing ever to be accessed via my television set be made available? My genius thought was a nice cartoon film, something with pretty music and nice colours, something gentle and light that we could both doze to and pretend I had managed more than two hours sleep. No. She saw the godforsaken Teletubbies and that was it. And, because I’m a soft touch when she’s poorly, I stupidly allowed it.

Brain melting commenced. Good grief it is dreadful. Utterly ghastly. Painfully, miserably, brain damagingly awful. During that first miserable part of the day, as my poorly baby lay whimpering beside me, snuggled in her blankets, I cursed whichever sick weirdo created that show.

Then Z woke up. As The Boy brought him into the living room to start the day at a slightly less disgusting time of day, shrieks of “Peppa! Peppa!” filled the room.

Peppa bloody Pig. That stroppy, bossy, shrill little beastie with her long suffering mother, thoroughly abused father, and (admittedly the least offensive of all the characters) cry baby brother George filled my TV screen. YouTube and it’s three hours of Peppa compilation videos have a lot to answer for. Five minutes is bad enough put three hours?

Miss Rose snuggled down with some water and watched quietly, and because I hate to see her being quiet and still (she should be rampaging around playing the harmonica and planning world domination) I took comfort from the fact she seemed to be less unhappy.

Z was picked up by his mummy, and Miss Rose fell asleep. For three blissful hours The Boy and I recovered from our difficult night by watching Community, having conversations, eating food, and drinking luxurious and beautiful coffee.

Then came the era 0f UmiZoomi. Of the choices thus far I approve of UmiZoomi the most. For one thing I can see the educational value and for another thing the creatures that appear on screen are not likely to reappear later in my most haunting of nightmares. But good grief. Yes she was happy, yes she started to eat a bit and giggled with glee as the funny little maths loving creatures galavanted around the screen, but honestly I could feel my brain beginning to leak out of my ears.

The day is not yet over. We are indulging in the Cbeebies bedtime hour. Waybuloo, filled with it’s gianted headed, floating, illiterate and badly speaking little alien like creatures with no noses. But thankfully it is just one show then something else equally hideous, but equally short lived, will replace it.

Miss Rose has made a massive improvement. I’ve had to tell her off (a beautiful thing after she’s been so lethargic and sad), and she’s eaten a good handful of crackers and is agreeing to me feeding her some dinner.

She will soon be turfed off to bed for an early night, and I shall descend to a blissful land where the TV screen is dark, the floor is clean of vom, and I can sip a glass of pinot grigio and wait for The Boy to return home so we can snuggle down for an early night of our own.

And await the terrifying spectre of TinkyWinky appearing in my dreams.

You can check out all my contact info an links on, I’m on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram so you can get in touch on there, as well as find links to all my work. There’s also which has all the work by both myself and Jonathan McKinney and loads of extra content such as background stories for different characters. If you want to subscribe on Patreon, its just $1 a month to help support our work and it also grants you access to our extra podcast a week, you can go to

Thanks as always for reading, and I’ll speak to you soon I hope!


2 responses to “Children’s Television Overdose

  1. I am in the same boat as you right as we speak. Our daughter has been sick for the past couple of days. We don’t usually let her indulge in much TV, so she is making up for lost time these past two days. Netflix is all she wants too. For us it is Strawberry Shortcake, Justin Time & the worst cartoon ever Pingu. You want to talk about annoying. Ugh! She is on the mend. I think another day of rest will do her well & then I am pulling the plug. Good luck. I hope her tummy feels better soon.



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