What is up with this guy?
At least in Ron Howard’s animated movie, “Curious George 2” The Man In The Yellow you-know-what is given a girlfriend who tells him (basically—she’s not too bright—look at her choice in men): “Lose the job-obsession, or lose me. And, er, upset George.” Of course, Hat Man doesn’t get it. Unless you count the end of the movie—when job-obsession wins out with a promotion and a smattering of I LOVE MY MONKEY AND WILL SPEND MORE TIME WITH HIM type of emotion (bye-bye, girlfriend).
But who could TMITYH (The Man In The Yellow you-know-what) be paired up with, anyway—male or female? And why bother pairing him with anyone? George, the color yellow, his hat and new furniture and rugs are the only objects of any of TMITYH’s affections and he almost kills George in every single episode or movie, through carelessness, gross (nearly tragic) neglect and the inability to not be swayed by others (“Sure, send my monkey up into Space on a mission he might never return from! George! Here’s your Space helmet! Get the hell on that rocket! We’re serving science! NOW!”).
And yet, when I was a child and reading “Curious George”, I did not notice TMITYH’s flaws and pathological bone-headedness. I had eyes only for George being curious. I was never afraid for George—more pitying. I was too new to the world to blame TMITYH for putting George in life-threatening situations. If TMITYH gave his permission for George to play with the radioactive stub of nuclear waste fallout, then it must be okay—and if George started glowing and feeling sick and shed all of his monkey hair, well then it must be his fault, right? Because TMITYH is authority. And when I was a child, I was made aware that Questioning Authority was not a good idea.
However, now that I am a parent—i.e., authority—this much is certain: If it was me and TMITYH in a dark alley, I know who would emerge with George perched on her shoulder, kissing her head and making happy, grateful monkey noises to the tune of, “THANK YOU FOR SAVING MY LIFE!!!”
Unless, of course, George is suffering from Stockholm Syndrome, which is probably more the reality.
(Peace sign wristwatch—now THAT’S fashion, baby!)