Who among you grew up watching the clumsy bumbling of Scooby Doo and his mystery-happy gang? The cartoon series was an essential part of my weekends throughout my childhood, initially in Spanish and later on in English. As a child, you don’t really pay attention to the valuable life lessons this simple and rather repetitive formula cartoon series imparts, but as a parent, you tend to look out for the good values the shows your child watches can and will impart.
Obviously I am no longer a child nor a parent of a small child but I still love Scooby Doo. Looking back, with the advantage of hindsight and life colourful experiences, I realise now at a powerful teacher Scooby is:
- All monsters are human – the horror movies and books, are mere figments of someone’s imagination. The true monsters are those who manipulate people’s minds, morals, freedom, emotions, bodies, and come disguised with the best of intentions or create an illusion that entraps the vulnerable.
- Best friends come in different packages – Scooby Doo and Shaggy are the best example of teaching you that your best friend turns out to be the person you need most in your life to save you from yourself, and not necessarily the one you want. You may be the strong, confident know-it-all out to save the world, but it will take a clumsy goofball to show you the way and point you in the right direction.
- We find our own self-confidence through others – it takes a true friend to help you overcome your fears, or even better, walk with you in the dark. Even if you both stumble and perhaps even trip over each other from time to time, you have each other to prevent the other from slipping further down the hole.
- A sense of humour in the face of adversity is as important as courage – perhaps even more important. Laughter allows you to take a step or two back and find a fresh perspective on things. At first it may sound bizarre to laugh at your troubles, but it is a valuable tool in order to calm down and re-anchor yourself with more objectivity rather than charge ahead in anger and despair.
There are many treasures from the past that I have been re-discovering with a fresh perspective. That’s the thing about a treasure chest, you collect as you go along, and one day realise you have outgrown half of the things, and need to sort out. We have a strong tendency to cling to sentimental junk, allowing it to creep into the more essential spaces of our souls and preventing growth. I may have outgrown Saturday morning cartoons for many reasons, and you won’t get me to sit through Pink Panther and Daffy Duck anymore, let alone Porky Pig, but Prof. Scooby? Always!