Triton : Sea gull? You went up to the surface again, didn't you? Didn't you?

Ariel : Nothing happened.

Triton : Ariel, how many times must we go through this? You could have been seen by one of those barbarians, by one of those humans!

Ariel : They're not barbarians!

Triton : Do you think I want to see... my daughter snared by some fish-eater's hook?

Ariel : I'm 16 years old, Daddy. I'm not a child!

Triton : Don't take that tone of voice with me! As long as you live under my ocean, you'll obey me.

Ah, the age-old and oft-repeated conversations between a parent and a child.

For her birthday, Grandma sent a Disney movie, The Little Mermaid. In Dormouse's mind, this ranks among the Greatest Gifts of All Time. (For the record, this is the same Grandma who sent it in a padded envelope along with three cups of confetti, so any kudos for the perfect present should be reserved until after my living room floor has been vacuumed five or six more times.) Dormouse desperately bought into the pre-marketing that smacked you in face everywhere you turned months before the DVD was available and asked for it for her birthday at least six weeks before we even started to think about her birthday. Now at the top of my to-do list: have a long talk with Disney executives when I meet them in Hell.

I know it's probably nonsense to think that we could wear a hole in a DVD by simply watching it over and over, but if there's a remote possibility, we will find a way. We have already watched it dozens of times and, unfortunately, Dormouse seems to have inherited that gene from KingofHearts that makes him repeat every line in a movie he's seen over and over again in the weeks following viewing said movie. Which means we've been treated to a drove of Disney dialog this week. The funny thing is, it's a movie I had never seen before. I'm not sure how I missed it. I know I was a teenager when it came out so I was probably too cool for school to go and see it in the theaters, but by the time Beauty and the Beast came around, I was already into my lost childhood phase, so I had seen every Disney movie that was released for home viewing by that time. The Little Mermaid simply slipped through the cracks... as did Hercules and Mulan years later. I still have not seen those. But those were during the Dark Years of Disney and I believe that by now the Empire has found a way to buy back every copy that was sold, put Warner Brothers' name on them, and erase the memories of those who did see them, so those two probably don't count.

Anyway, The Little Mermaid is that ageless story of conflict between the generations and how parents just don't understand their children and their new-fangled ways and their crazy music, and the moral I take away from it is hey... go ahead, abandon your family and sell your soul to the devil because as long as the boy loves you, it'll all be worth it in the end. Somehow, I think this wasn't what Hans Christian Andersen had in mind, although according to some, his version wasn't any better.

Perhaps I'm expecting too much from an animated fish story.

Here's what Dormouse came away with:
I was feeding her lunch yesterday and I politely asked her to finished eating her meal. Or more accurately, "I'm sick of you pouring milk out on the tray and swimming peas around in it, now eat, eat, eat, like a big girl!"

She said more to her pea pool party than anyone else:
"I'm three years old, mommy. I'm not a child."

OK Disney exces... you and I have got a whole list of things to talk about during that meeting in Hell.