My 6-year-old son, Asher, knows a lot about legos (awesome!), superheroes (not real people), dinosaurs (death by volcano) and how Santa Claus manages to deliver toys to every single child on earth in just one night (magic plus Rudolph). But he doesn’t know jack about Justin Bieber.
So a few days ago, when I was offered the chance to interview Bieber’s mom, Pattie Mallette, I went looking for the one person who knew even less about him than I do.
“Come over here and watch this boy who sings and dances with me.”
“Do I have to go to bed if I say no?”
Asher, shoulders slumping. ”Okay, I’ll watch the boy dance.”
Since they’d sent me a screener of his new movie, “Believe” (opening Christmas Day), we sat down with my computer for Ash’s first ever glimpse of the Biebster.
“I dunno,” I said. ”I guess they’re in love with him.”
“Ewwwww,” he yelled. ”That’s gross!” A pause. ”I’m never getting married but I might marry you when I grow up.”
“And daddy’s gonna be MAD!!!” Laughing oedipally.
A cacophony of screaming girls drew him back to the screen.
“I’d be scared to get up there (on stage). Is he scared?”
“I dunno. Doesn’t look scared to me.”
“Can I go play with my legos now?” He stands up, waiting.
“Let’s watch a liiiittle more.”
On screen, Justin performed in an outfit that mostly consisted of 10 to 12 inches of white underwear. Asher catapulted himself up from the sofa. ”Ewww, I see his underpants!!!!” he yelled, eyes wide open — finger pointing to the cottony expanse. ”And all those girls see his underpants!! WHY??!!!”
“Yeah. Like mine.” Asher nodded.
Suddenly there was a man with a belt lashing at Justin Bieber.
“Whoa, why is he getting a spanking? Is that his daddy?”
“That is definitely not his daddy. That’s Zach Galfkfielfkfkjf…uh, a comedian.”
“What’s a comdemium?”
“Uh, it’s his job to be silly. He didn’t really spank him. I don’t think.”
“What?” I said. ”What’s so funny?”
“That mustache is funny. Hee hee, hee hee. Is that a disguise? Hee hee.”
“If it is, it’s not a very good one.”
Asher leaned back on the couch and sighed. ”Can I go to bed now?”
“Sure, dude. Thanks for your help.”
He headed for the stairs, his mind already somewhere else. Then he looked back.
“I wanna be a Superhero when I grow up.”
“Superheros are not real, mommy.”
“Yeah, okay, maybe not. But you’re my superhero.”
“Thanks, mommy. Can I have a disguise for Christmas?”
“Okay, buddy. I’ll see if we can borrow Justin Bieber’s mustache.”
And up the stairs he went.
This is the first in a series of articles about my experience with Pattie Mallette and Justin Bieber. And my kindergartner. Please check back for more on the actual interview with Pattie and what transpired after. Hint: she called me back the next day.
Most of the questions my kid came up with were spawned by watching Justin Bieber’s new movie, “Believe.” The premiere was last night in LA and the movie opens Christmas Day. Beliebers who’ve found their way to my site, please calm down. I’m afraid all that jumping about and screaming is gonna give you an aneurysm. Just toss all that crap Santa gave you aside and get to a movie theater. Because at least for you, that’s where the real gift is.