http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef017eea918a73970d-piWhile channel surfing recently, I came across a program called Betty White’s Off Their Rockers. It’s a reality comedy series broadcast on NBC in which older adults play pranks on members of the younger generation. I’ve been a fan of Betty White for many years so I eased up on the remote and thought I’d tune in for at least a few minutes.
The show is hilarious. The younger generation’s reaction to the pranksters’ mischief is a key element to the humor. In the episode I watched, an older gentleman ran up to some young adults at the park, desperate for help because he said the man behind a nearby tree, also an older adult, was stalking him because of a Facebook connection. Pretty soon, the stalker came from behind the tree and chased the man through the park. Later, two women riding a bicycle-built-for-two flirted with two young men passing by and convinced them to hop aboard and steer the bike.
http://nfpa.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8351b9f3453ef017d431d3503970c-piI identified an important thread in each sketch. While Betty White’s crew was making mischief, they were also exercising. In NFPA’s Remembering When: A Fire and Fall Prevention Program for Older Adults, we provide eight fire prevention and eight fall prevention messages including, “Exercise regularly to build strength and improve your balance and coordination.”
While entertaining audiences, the practical jokers were reinforcing an important safety message without even realizing it.