316px-Elmo-elmo-elmoMy love affair with Sesame Street started when my first son was sick for at least three months after his first encounter with daycare. We had nothing else to do but binge-watch Sesame Street on Netflix. I’ve always been skeptical of kid’s shows and how freaking annoying they are, but Sesame Street had me obsessed.

The celebrities! The parodies! The witty jokes! The surprisingly un-annoying puppet voices and dances! I could go on for hours. I always know when there’s a new episode, and I watch Sesame Street celebrity music videos on YouTube to entertain my son in a pinch.

With all of the Sesame Street domination in our house, it’s clear that Elmo has an influence. My two-year-old even calls the color red “Elmo.” Since I’ve let Sesame Street binge-watching become a bad habit, it’s clear that Elmo has become a partner in our parenting. Oh, and did I mention that my two-year-old calls us parents “Elmo-mama-dada”? And so it begins.

Elmo is turning three-and-a-half yet again (his permanent age) on February 3. In honor of the little guy’s birthday, I’d love to share eight ways that Elmo is obviously a better parent than me. He has a hand in raising my son, so he deserves the credit:

1. He is endlessly patient.

Elmo repeats the same words over and over and over again, and just when you think he’s done, he repeats them again. If I had one tenth of his puppety patience, I’d be parent of the year.

2. He knows people in high places.

Ricky Gervais, Cameron Diaz, Sarah Jessica Parker, the list goes on. Elmo’s entourage definitely gives him cool points in the parent category.

3. He can sing and dance.

I certainly can’t do that when trying to entertain my kids, unless it’s the awkward white girl dance. The only catch is that Elmo’s puppety legs freak me the fuck out.

4. He can entertain for hours.

That’s the beauty of Elmo on TV—he goes on a loop and never stops. If I have to read the same story more than twice, I get all twitchy inside.

5. He advocates sharing.

I hope my toddler learns from Elmo’s example because around our house, the sharing battle between him and his eight-month-old brother almost isn’t worth fighting. I give up.

6. He’s a social butterfly.

Elmo’s always hanging out with dozens of puppets doing puppet things on Sesame Street. I’d assume he’d have an in to lots of fun playdates, while I’m still trying to make a single mom friend in my area.

7. He talks in third person.

Talking in third person always, always makes you a BAMF (bad ass motherfucker). More cool points for Elmo.

8. Elmo isn’t a picky eater.

According to some Internet rumor, Elmo’s favorite food is wasabi, which is why he has no eyelids. As the third parent of my child, I hope Elmo teaches my son a little something about expanding his palate beyond macaroni and mashed potatoes.

(Image: muppet.wikia.com)