In an unprecedented move that’s shaking things up in the Neighborhood of Make-Believe, an Indiana mother of two is suing PBS over what she’s calling “Daniel Tiger’s disturbing and appalling lack of pants.”
Katherine P. Nisphobe—or “Kat,” to those closest to her—recently spoke with our reporters about the lawsuit, which she filed on the first of the year.
“I made a resolution to stand up for what I believe in,” she said. “It’s time for that little beast to put some damn pants on.”
PBS CEO Paula Kerger has yet to publicly respond to the charges filed against her company.
“Of course they’re keeping quiet,” Nisphobe said. “They don’t want this shit going public. If you ask me, the entire PBS operation is shady. I’m starting a MOVEMENT here.
“Before you know it, there’ll be angry parents storming the streets—Sesame Street, to be exact—demanding to know why Elmo struts around in the nude, or why that blue monstrosity is always trying to get his furry paws in someone else’s cookie jar.”
Nisphobe’s primary concern is the “threat of indecent exposure” posed by Tiger’s no-pants stance. “One second is all it takes,” she explained.
“What if Daniel bends over just a little too far when he’s picking up his toys at the end of an episode? Or he decides to do a show about gymnastics, does a somersault, and flashes a little tiger peen? I don’t want to have to explain to my 3-year-old daughter why Daniel Tiger has a tail in the front and the back.”
Nisphobe took a tangential moment to explain. “You see, for her own good, we don’t acknowledge the existence of penises around our daughter. Or is it peni? Hell if I know. Anyhoo, her daddy and I told her that man evolved from monkeys, and sometimes it takes a while for boys to lose their tails. So she thinks her baby brother and Daddy have ‘tails’ and that they’ll probably fall off eventually. She’s good with that explanation. But now, if Daniel Tiger has a little ‘slip-up’ while the cameras are rolling, how the f*** am I supposed to account for TWO tails?”
When we suggested Nisphobe blame it on a genetic abnormality, or that it might be time to spill the beans about male genitalia, Kat
hissed laughed in our faces. “Well, that’s just f***ing ridiculous.”
Nisphobe is no stranger to the cats-in-pants movement. In fact, when we went to her home to conduct this interview, we found her stretched out on a yoga mat, doing sun salutations with four of the five cats she owns. (The fifth was—according to Nisphobe—“too worn out from the treadmill this morning.”) All of the cats were wearing tiny Lycra yoga pants.
Meanwhile, Nisphobe’s kids were vegged out in front of the TV, eating “Cheerios” that looked suspiciously like Meow Mix and watching the very show in question.
“Well, how else are the kitties and I supposed to get our yoga in?” she snapped when we asked why she would allow her children to watch a show that—according to her own words as stated in the lawsuit—“normalizes public nudity.”
“It’s the only thing that keeps them occupied for more than two minutes at a time. That doesn’t mean I condone Daniel Tiger’s pantslessness or that suspicious looking red hood—”
Nisphobe paused to cough up a hairball.
“Look at me. I’m getting worked up just talking about it. Where was I? Oh, the hoodie. I mean, come on—he can’t be bothered to throw on a pair of basketball shorts, but he feels the need to strut around in an oversized sweatshirt? Something’s not right there.”
When we asked if she knew for a fact that Daniel Tiger wasn’t indeed wearing bike shorts beneath that infamous red hoodie, Nisphobe referenced the Tour de France doping scandal.
“Oh, yeah, BIKE SHORTS. Maybe that’s it. Like that Lance Armstrong fellow. Remind me again what the deal was with him? You bring up a good point, actually. What does that little hoodlum need a baggy sweatshirt for, anyway? What does he keep in that giant pocket? Is he supposed to be, like, a Tony the Tiger protégé? Out slummin’ it in the ‘Hood of Make-Believe, dealing sugar-coated Frosted Flakes right under King Friday’s nose?”
At this point, Nisphobe left the room to check on her son, who sounded as if he was gagging on a “Cheerio.”
“The whole show just reeks of illicit activities,” she concluded, reentering the room and placing the toddler bowl of tuna-scented “Cheerios” in front of one of her cats, who immediately wolfed it down.
While Nisphobe waits for her lawsuit to reach the Supreme Court—as she suspects it will—she’s started a GoFundMe campaign to raise awareness (and money) for her cause. Her goal is listed as $1.2 million, but she anticipates donations to surpass that quickly, especially once this “eye-opening” interview hits the stands.
Nisphobe plans to use the money to start her own line of kitty yoga pants. She says she intends on “changing the world, one naked cat at a time.”
When we asked if she plans on taking animation classes in order to create a pair of pants for Daniel Tiger himself (since he is—you know—a cartoon), Nisphobe declined to comment.
“If you’ll excuse me, I’ve really got to get back to my yoga,” she said, ushering us out the door. “We’re trying a new pose called Downward Cat today, and it’s going to take all of my focus.”
About the Author
Samantha Wassel is a Stay-At-Home Mama to the cutest twin toddlers in the history of all Toddlerdom. When she’s not running her borderline-offensive mouth, she’s running masochistically long distances, often with the aforementioned toddlers in tow. She enjoys reading, writing, baking, marathoning, complaining, photographing, playgrounding, and Ghirardelli Midnight Reverie chocolate bars. Her writing has been featured on Scary Mommy, Club Mid, In the Powder Room, Bluntmoms, and Mamalode. Follow her on Facebook and check out her personal blog, Between the Monkey Bars.