A few years ago I became aware of a little yellow fellow named SpongeBob Squarepants. My children and husband found him to be quite funny and I was intrigued by the constant laughter coming from them as they watched his show.
I sat down and watched his show for a few minutes on several occasions and I was very unimpressed. It seemed to me that every time I saw him he was cutting off his sponge and walking around with his brain exposed or blowing snot everywhere. My motherly nature kicked in and I felt the need to ban him from my home but my husband intervened and said that I needed to give SpongeBob a chance. I agreed to let his presence remain in my house but I didn’t intend to partake in his laughter inducing ways.
One day my family was watching SpongeBob and for some reason I sat down to watch. It was the episode where SpongeBob (SB) had been eating some homemade concoction and it gave him really bad breath. He was walking around talking to all of his friends and each friend started to shrivel and wilt, or run away screaming, or vaporize. SB assumed that his friends reacted that way because everyone thought he was so ugly.
SB was devastated and shared his agony with his best friend Patrick. The problem was that Patrick has no nose so he could not tell SB that he had terrible breath so Patrick just went with SB’s theory of ugliness. He then tried to make the inhabitants of Bikini Bottom more accepting of SB by making them look at him. He was really no help at all. Eventually Patrick ate the leftovers of the homemade concoction and when he started talking to SB and SB smelled Patrick’s breath SB realized that he wasn’t ugly he just had really bad breath.
I spent that half hour laughing so hard that at times I lost my breath. I fell in love with SB in that half hour. He was so insecure and was so flawed that I couldn’t help but relate to him. I now watch him on a regular basis with my children and have tentatively agreed to let my son have a SB bedroom theme.
SpongeBob said it best in a song, “I’m a goofy goober. We’re all goofy goobers!” He reminds me that we’re all flawed and nerdy, each in our own way. Some of us try to hide it hoping to appear calm, cool, and collected to the outside world. If that’s you I hope you will one day learn to love and accept your goofy nature. Maybe SpongeBob can help.