Out With the Riff-Raffi

threedayweekend2I’m confused.  How in the name of Greg/Sam, Anthony, Murray, and Jeff has my child been exposed to the likes of Raffi without my consent or knowledge?  Prior to this week I was vaguely aware of Raffi’s existence but did not know anything about him.  I had heard of the song, “Baby Beluga” but did not know the tune nor did I care to.  Imagine my surprise when my kid picks up a Raffi concert DVD at the library and says, “Let’s get this ‘Waffy’ movie, Mom!”.

I added it to our pile of goods and didn’t think much of it until last night when she asked to watch it.  I put the DVD on and went back to my magazine.  Sweet Jesus!  What the hell is going on here?  I can appreciate that the music is positive and soothing but all of the children in the crowd seem to be drugged and why in God’s name are they all wearing pinafores and/or suspenders?  Is this the1980s or the 1880s?


I decided to do some research.  Okay fine, I Googled him while eating an english muffin…  He appears to be a doe-eyed Armenian man with a penchant for using a banana as a telephone.  And the kids eat it up with a spoon!  I had seen his picture before but I think I had mistaken him for the prop comic Gallagher.  Without the hair, there is a resemblance.  And I think they both wear black, pleated pants.  So in that way, he also resembles Paula Poundstone.  Which would be Strike Two for Raffi.  If anybody’s keeping track, the Banana Phone was Strike One.

So, I still don’t know how the hell my daughter knew about Raffi if I didn’t.  We spend all of our time together and she only started Preschool last week.  My sister suggested that there may have been some playground peer pressure at work and that Raffi is only the beginning.  That terrifies me.  If Raffi is the gateway drug to Hannah Montana, please bogart that Banana Phone.  If you see me or mine on the playground, don’t pass it over to us.  We don’t want a hit.

You can read more of how Mary B. aims low (and sometimes high!) over at This Human’s Condition.


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  1. Brooke says:

    HAHAHA! Great post. I remember equally torturing my parents with the Kids Songs tapes on car rides. Of course, I didn’t know it was torture at the time, which makes me not have to deal with karma for it. ;)

    However, torturing my college friends with “Banana Phone”? I totally claim responsibility for that.

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  2. The pleated pants have turned me off to Steve on Blues Clues. Yeah, I know he’s cute in a late-’90s kind of way, but pleated pants just make too much extra room in the crotchal area for me to like him.

    Raffi? Never watched. Never will. I’d rather watch a marathon of Spongebob than have that crap on.

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    • Mary says:

      @Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing],

      Steve, Chippendales dancers, Phil Collins… All bad and all pleated pants wearers. I rest my case. ;)

  3. DefendUSA says:

    I don’t remember how we learned about Raffi, but I own all of his Cd’s. Each of my kids had a favorite song…My second kid was soothed by that voice at goon time every day…5pm. And that kid is now 17! He remembers all the words…it gives me a pain in heart in a good way.

  4. kyooty says:

    Raffi? my younger brother and sister had his “tapes”

  5. Jayme says:

    He’s just straight up CREEPY! Hide the children!

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  6. Mary says:

    I don’t recall listening to any “kid’s music” when I was a child. My mom ruled the turntable with Joan Armatrading, The Beatles and Bob Dylan. For all I know, Raffi might be the sweetest guy on the planet. Just remember: We used to think that about Peewee Herman, too… ;)

  7. Erin says:

    Wow, I had no idea that guy was still around! I saw him in concert, TWENTY FOUR YEARS AGO! I thought loved his music with all of my five-year-old heart. Now? Yikes…

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  8. IzzyMom says:

    Dude. Bananaphone. I actually DIG that song. Clearly, I’ve been brainwashed…

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